As successful as LASIK is, it is not free from certain side effects. One of the most common side effects that patients experience is dry eye.
This occurs because the surgeon cuts through the cornea of the eye to reshape it. This is the main reason that LASIK works the way it does.
This can sever important nerves that tell the brain when the eye needs hydration. As a result, you may experience a weakened tear response and fewer tears being produced. This is what leads to dry eye in patients after LASIK.
The good news is that dry eye from LASIK is rarely severe. It is usually only temporary and almost always heals in a matter of days or weeks.
If your dry eye persists long after your surgery, or you are experiencing worse than expected symptoms, talk to your eye doctor. Keep reading to learn more about dry eye after LASIK!
Dry eye is annoying at best, and it may be painful at worst. If you are experiencing post-LASIK dry eye, there are steps you can take to help decrease symptoms as your eyes heal.
As you begin your recovery, you may find it difficult to stay off of your screens. The brain often forgets to blink while it’s being stimulated by things like the internet, television shows, or video games.
Not blinking can compound on already dry eyes, causing the problem to worsen over time. Limiting your screen time is an easy way to keep your eyes comfortable as you recover from LASIK.
Certain foods promote healthy tear production. Staying hydrated gives your body the ingredients it needs to create tears.
In particular, look for foods high in omega-3 fatty acids. This includes fish oil, walnuts, and chia seeds.
Adding water vapor to the air can help keep them stay moist. This provides a baseline atmosphere that is healthy for the eyes.
Humidifiers are best in the places that you spend the most time, like your office or bedroom.
This means you need to wear sunglasses outside. You’ll block dust and dirt and the sun’s UV rays while doing this.
You also need to be very careful to avoid getting water or shampoo in your eyes while you shower. Irritated eyes produce even less tears, a process that can feed back into itself.
Rubbing your eyes is never a good idea, but this is something you must avoid after LASIK. This does not help with dry eye in the long run.
It is also a guaranteed way to cause serious post LASIK complications. Instead of rubbing your eyes, use eye drops to relieve your dry eye.
You can use over the counter eye drops, but be sure you know what type you are getting. Eye drops with higher viscosity provide longer lasting relief.
They can make your eyesight blurry for some time. Thinner eye drops provide instant relief, though it’s relatively short-lived.
Although most LASIK patients can expect to quickly regain their normal eye functions quickly, everyone is different. If you are concerned that your eyes are taking too long to recover, contact your eye doctor and talk to them about it.
Wondering if LASIK could be the right procedure for you? The first step is to schedule a LASIK consultation at Vision Care of Maine in Brewer, ME!
LASIK is great at changing your life, but the process involved with getting it can seem intimidating. When dealing with a surgery that involves your eyesight, it’s only natural to be skeptical or apprehensive.
To make sure that you can relax and maintain enthusiasm for your new vision, here are 4 tips to make your LASIK experience better!
Knowing more about LASIK can remove a lot of the uncertainty around the subject. During your LASIK consultation at Vision Care of Maine, you can learn all about the procedure.
This will give you information about why it is so successful, and what you can do to achieve the best outcome. Feel free to ask any questions you have throughout the screening!
There’s no such thing as a dumb or bad question when it comes to your eyes, so ask away!
With everything that will be going on during the surgery, the last thing you need to worry about is how you are going to get home. Ask a friend or family member to drive you to the procedure and home when it’s over.
You can’t drive after you’ve had LASIK, as your eyes will still be numb or recovering. Your vision might be blurry or unstable, at least for a few days after the procedure.
Even if your vision is clear right after LASIK, it’s not safe to drive yourself home. Most patients can drive the next day, but ask your eye doctor to be certain.
LASIK only takes about 15 minutes per eye. Though it’s short, it is important for you to be able to remain as still as possible through parts of it.
As special as LASIK is, there’s no need to dress fancy for this occasion. Opt for some clothing that is comfortable and makes you feel relaxed.
This may be sweatpants, leggings, or a hoodie that’s well-loved. You may want to think about wearing layers in case you get cold as well.
Sleep helps to reduce stress, and even though LASIK is safe and fast, it can be stressful for some people. Going into surgery feeling well-rested can give you the confidence you need to make it through the procedure calm and collected.
On the other side of the surgery, sleep is also an important part of the healing process. Right after your procedure, you will be quite tired, so a solid nap should be high up on your short post-op to-do list.
But it is even more important that you do not bump or rub your eyes, which can be difficult to avoid while you are asleep. This is why you will receive eye shields to cover your eyes while you rest.
The shields are designed to fit comfortably, so just be sure they are on before you pass out! Sleeping for a few hours once you get home is one of the best things you can do for your eyes as they recover.
Ready to have a great LASIK experience? The first step is finding out if you’re a good candidate for the procedure!
Schedule your LASIK consultation at Vision Care of Maine in Bangor, ME today!
Not everyone can receive LASIK. To have the surgery, you need to pass a strict candidacy test to determine if the procedure is safe for you.
Some of the criteria include age, a reasonable prescription, stable vision, good health, pregnancy status, and the condition of your eyes. One condition that is particularly troublesome for LASIK hopefuls is dry eye syndrome.
Keep reading to find out if you can get LASIK if you have dry eye syndrome!
You have likely experienced the symptoms of dry eye before. Common symptoms include itchiness, redness, excessive watering, and a gritty sensation in the eyes. When you experience these symptoms frequently and without obvious reason, it may be a chronic issue.
Dry eye can happen for two different reasons. The first is your eyes are not producing enough tears or the tears produced are low-quality.
Healthy tears should be made from three basic ingredients: Water, mucus, and oil. Water carries nutrients and hydration. Mucus allows the tear to spread evenly across the surface of the eye.
Oil stops the tear from evaporating too quickly. Most people who have tear quality problems are not producing enough oil.
Decreased tear production can be due to factors like aging, as a symptom of other conditions, or damage to your tear glands. It can also be a side effect of laser surgery such as LASIK, though this is usually temporary.
The reason LASIK candidacy is affected by prior problems with dry eye is that the surgery severs nerves in the cornea. These nerves tell the eye to produce tears when it needs them.
If you are already suffering from dry eye due to other reasons, LASIK will only exacerbate the issue. This can lead to further problems with your dry eye.
You are also more likely to develop surgical complications during your recovery.
Treating your dry eye largely depends on what the underlying issue is. If you are underproducing tears, you may be prescribed medication to stimulate tear production.
You may receive inserts that block tears from draining or inserts that slowly dissolve and produce artificial tears.
If you aren’t producing enough oil for your tears, you may receive treatments to open up the oil-producing glands in your eyelids. These treatments can also help reduce inflammation.
It is not uncommon to combine dry eye treatments, especially if the case is particularly bad.
Prevention is also a key factor in treating dry eye. Environmental factors play a huge role in causing dry eye. Here are a few ways you can help your dry eye yourself:
To learn more about LASIK, set up a LASIK consultation at Vision Care of Maine in Bangor, ME!