What Can I Do For A Better Cataract Surgery Recovery?

Older couple relaxing after Cataract Surgery

If your cataracts are making it hard to complete tasks, it might be time to consider having cataract surgery. But there’s no need to stress because cataract surgery is an effective and low-risk procedure.

In fact, it’s the most commonly performed medical procedure in the country. But you may have concerns about recovery after cataract surgery.

Not to fear: recovery is quick and should cause you only minimal discomfort. And the best way to recover as fast and painlessly as possible? Just follow your doctor’s instructions and these simple tips!

Avoid Strenuous Activity

The first thing you should do when you’re recovering from cataract surgery is to try to take it easy. Avoid doing anything strenuous, like exercise or heavy lifting.

Why? Because being too active heightens your risk of straining your eyes. Even bending over too much can raise the pressure in your eye.

Increased eye pressure can delay healing and lead to severe complications. So be safe and stick to light activities for the first few days after surgery. This includes walking, very light jogging, or easy workouts on the elliptical.

Protect Your Eyes

It’s very important to keep your eye free and clear of any particles. Particles like dust can easily cause a bacterial infection while your eye is healing.

Be careful around dust, pollen, and even water. You may not realize it but tap water is the perfect environment for bacteria to grow in.

Your eyes will be more susceptible to infections as you recover so any running water could let bacteria into your eye. This could then lead to an infection.

Stick to baths for a while or be careful in the shower to keep water pointed away from your face. As for pools and hot tubs, avoid them altogether for at least two weeks.

Getting chlorine anywhere near your eyes can be very harmful. The same goes for any bodies of water including lakes, streams, rivers, and the ocean.

You’ll probably be sent home with an eye shield to wear over your eye immediately following surgery. You don’t have to wear it all the time after the first day of your recovery.

But you will need to wear it at night for the first few weeks while you sleep. This will prevent your eye from rubbing against your pillow.

When you go outside, always wear sunglasses. Your eyes will be more sensitive, especially to the sun after cataract surgery.

This is a good rule in general, but it’s especially important in aiding your recovery.

Never Rub Your Eyes

You should always avoid rubbing your eyes. But when you’re recovering from eye surgery, it’s even more important to avoid.

Even if your fingers are clean, rubbing can irritate your eyes. This can slow down your recovery or even lead to an infection!

Do your best to not touch your eyes. If they’re uncomfortable, you can talk to your doctor about using artificial tears.

Use Medication As Directed

Your doctor will prescribe medication to aid in your recovery. This will likely include antibacterial and anti-inflammatory eye drops.

It’s vital to take these medications as directed on a strict schedule. Setting an alarm to remind you when to take a dose can be helpful if you find it hard to remember when to take them.

When it comes to over-the-counter medications, have your doctor clear them before taking them. Usually, they’ll recommend preservative-free artificial tears and only mild painkillers.

But talk to them to make sure any kind of OTC medications are approved before you take them.

Concerned that you may need cataract surgery? Schedule a cataract screening at New England Eye Center in Boston, MA! If cataracts make living your life difficult, removing them may be the best solution!

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