LASIK is usually an effective and safe procedure. For those who want to be able to see without glasses or contacts, LASIK surgery is a dream come true. But even those who consider LASIK sometimes worry about potential complications after surgery.
It’s common to worry about these kinds of things for any elective procedure. LASIK is safe, with a 96% success rate with patients! It’s important to remember that even LASIK can come with side effects. Keep reading to learn some of the common eye problems after LASIK!
After surgery, many patients find that their eyes are a little sore. This can include itchiness and a feeling of grit in the eye. For some people, this can be very uncomfortable. When you’re recovering from LASIK, do not rub your eyes! Rubbing or scratching your eyes could lead to infection or other complications.
If you find that after a few days your eyes are still bothering you, anti-inflammatory drops can help. This irritation should get better after the first week of recovery. If you find that your eyes are still feeling irritated a month or more after the procedure, talk to your doctor.
It should come as no surprise that after LASIK surgery, your vision won’t be perfect at first. While you will immediately notice visual improvement, you might become sensitive to light. This is only temporary and usually goes away after a few days.
You may also notice that you see halos or bursts of light around light sources. This could take several months to go away. Even as your vision improves, things might seem hazy or smoky.
These annoying symptoms will go away once your eyes have healed. LASIK has a fast recovery period, but it can take up to a year for your eyes to fully heal. Make sure to be patient with your eyes! If you experience light sensitivity or halos for a long time, consult your doctor.
Dry eye is a common condition that sometimes happens after LASIK surgery. Before you ever get LASIK, your doctor can evaluate your risks for developing dry eye. This is by measuring your tear production.
After this test, if you are at risk of developing dry eye, you may be prescribed eye drops or supplements. These get taken before and after your procedure.
If after surgery you find your eyes continue to feel itchy, gritty, inflamed and dried out, you may have dry eye. There are several ways to help reduce symptoms of dry eye. Keep your eyes lubricated with artificial tears and anti-inflammatory eye drops.
You may also want to consider buying a humidifier and consuming more water. For more severe cases of dry eye, your doctor can insert punctal plugs. Punctal plugs are specifically designed to help your tears stay in your eyes for longer. This is not necessary for all patients who suffer from dry eyes.
Infection is rare but still possible. When you have LASIK, your surgeon makes a flap in your cornea and works under that flap to shape your eye with a laser. The flap is then replaced and acts as a bandage while your eye heals, preventing anything from getting in. As the corneal flap heals, there is a chance it could become misplaced. If this happens, there is an increased risk of infection if anything gets in the flap.
This is why it’s so important that you keep your eyes protected after LASIK! You should use your prescription eye drops, which help prevent infection. The risk of infection due to the corneal flap is rare. If you want to reduce your risks of developing complications after LASIK, take good care of your eyes!
Considering LASIK? Contact New England Eye Center today to schedule an evaluation at one of our locations!