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A Life Without Glasses: The First Days After Laser Eye Surgery

12th February 2018

Clear vision is something that many of us take for granted but for those who’s vision is less than ideal, vision correction treatments, such as Laser Eye Surgery, can be a very attractive. But what does a life after laser eye surgery look like, and how long is the recovery time?

The average total recovery period, following Laser Eye Surgery, is around 3-6 months. But don’t dismay, this is just the amount of time it takes for your eyes and vision to reach 100 percent. In the first few days after treatment, your vision will improve to near-optimal levels. Of course, everyones eyes are different, and recovery times may vary.

We’ve put together a Laser Eye Surgery recovery timeline to help give you an idea of what the first few days and weeks might look like.

The First 24 Hours

Almost immediately after the procedure, you should notice improvements in your vision. The first few hours can be a bit foggy or blurry, so it is advised that you rest and keep your eyes closed. We do not recommend driving immediately, so get a friend or family member to pick you up and take you home.

Once at home, you may return to light activities but be careful to avoid rubbing your eyes. You should also avoid all screens (TV, Smartphone, Tablet and Computers) and activities, such as reading, that require intensive use of your eyes, to prevent eye strain.

Whilst the cornea is in the early stages of recovery, you should expect a slight blur in your vision. This usually settles down within 24 hours. Take some time to rest and get into a good eye drop routine.

Day After Surgery

After some rest and recovery, you can begin to read and watch TV, as long as you remember to use lubricating eye drops to prevent your eyes from drying out. When attending your first post-operative visit, once again ask a friend or family member to take you. Your surgeon will likely give you the all clear to resume most day-to-day activities such as driving.

Returning to work after your post-op appointment, be sure to use any protective eye wear and use the eye drops if working with a screen.

If you are planning on heading off on holiday or a business trip, flying is now once again acceptable. However, be sure to keep the eye drops on hand as the air is very dry inside the cabin.

3 Days After

A few days after surgery, your cornea will have regained much of its strength allowing you to get back to light exercise such as jogging, stationary cycling and lifting light weights. As your eyes continue to heal over the next few weeks, some blurriness and fluctuation in vision may occur. Make sure you take extra care when driving in low light conditions.

At this stage, apart from vigorous exercise and taking extra care with your eyes, life will be getting back to normal.

2 weeks after

At this point, the cornea will have healed up further, making it safe to take part in sports like swimming, football, snorkelling and skiing (with the appropriate eye-wear). You should still avoid sport like rugby and water-skiing until at least one month after the procedure.

If you are unsure whether it’s safe to resume certain activities, Ask Your Surgeon.

Unlike the recovery period you’d expect after surgery, laser eye surgery patients find a quick and smooth recovery process. With a bit of rest and extra care for your eyes, you’ll be going about your life and enjoying the rewards of your newly corrected vision.

Have a question about Laser Eye Surgery or the recovery process? Take a look at our FAQs section to find answers or book a consultation with one of our highly trained consultant opthamologists who will take care of your treatment from the first consultation through to your aftercare appointments.

Related Information

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