Did you know that LASIK eye surgery has been around for more than 20 years (since 1995), and doctors have performed this surgery 19 million times since then, with a 95% satisfied rating? It seems many folks end up getting this surgery and are also highly satisfied with the results.
Are you planning to become part of this majority soon? Do you have surgery scheduled soon and wonder how to prepare for LASIK? As surgery day approaches, you’ll likely have many questions for your surgeon. And that’s completely normal. This article attempts to alleviate some of those pre-LASIK jitters.
We’ll answer questions like ways you can relieve anxiousness before your operation, what you shouldn’t do before surgery day, how to prep for your LASIK consultation, and answers to our top frequently asked questions from our scheduled LASIK patients.
Tips to Alleviate Anxiety before LASIK
Are you worried about your upcoming LASIK surgery? Maybe you have heard anonymous stories of people who flinched or sneezed during surgery and caused lasting damage to their eyes.
Rest assured, nothing that you can do during the surgery could ruin it. You are dealing with professionals who have performed thousands of these operations over their experienced lifetimes. There’s no need to worry.
But, if you need to know how to calm down before LASIK surgery, here are some things you can do:
Plan a relaxing day before your surgery. Do not do anything strenuous or stressful on the day before your surgery. And also, make sure you don’t plan anything major for the day after your surgery.
Do something relaxing, like taking a hot bath or watching a funny movie. Even better, go to sleep early and get a good night’s rest before your surgery day.
Make sure you ask all your questions. Do not worry about asking a “stupid” question. There isn’t such a thing.
Ask all your questions, big or small, before the surgery day, by contacting the assistant or consultant assigned to you. They have been asked it all before, so don’t be embarrassed.
Have a plan for who’s going to drive you after surgery. You will not be able to drive yourself after the surgery since your eyes will be irritated and light-sensitive.
It’s also recommended that you do not drive short distances 24 hours after the surgery and long distances 3 days after the surgery. That’s why having a plan for someone to pick you up after surgery and drive you home is important.
Try not to schedule anything for 3 days after the surgery, except rest, and recuperation time. If you can take time off work, then do that.
Prepare Your Eyes for Surgery
The only thing you will have to worry about during the surgery is fixing your eyes on a spot that the surgeon requests you to. One thing you can do to prepare for such periods of eye fixation is to do some eye exercises at home.
Choose an object and fix your eyes on that particular object for 30 seconds. Use a timer and challenge yourself to fix your eyes on that object, no matter what’s going on around you. Don’t get distracted or unfocused.
Do this a few times before your surgery day and on the day of the surgery, you will have no problems following the surgeon’s instructions like a pro.
What to Avoid before LASIK
A lot of LASIK surgery preparation is about avoiding certain things before surgery. Some of the before LASIK don’ts are below. But before that, remember that you don’t have to worry if you do have a pacemaker, as that doesn’t affect your surgery at all.
Contact lenses tend to mold the corneal surface, which can potentially change the curvature of your cornea and change your prescription in turn. That’s why you mustn’t wear your contact lenses before the surgery.
Depending on the kind of contact lenses you use, you will have to avoid wearing them for different periods of time.
- Soft lenses – avoid wearing them for 3 days minimum
- Rigid gas permeable/Hard Lenses – avoid wearing them for a week for every decade of use before surgery. IE: 30 years of wear means 3 weeks without RGPs
Also, you shouldn’t sleep with contact lenses on for at least a week before your LASIK surgery, as you might have dry eyes afterward. Your surgeon will give you strict instructions on this during your consultation, so make sure you follow their guidance.
As the LASIK appointment approaches, the more you might grow increasingly concerned about personally interfering with the results or the surgery itself. Rightly so! That shows that patients are taking their eye health and their recovery seriously. Showing proper concern is healthy. The following is a list of topics that patients often ask about.
Another thing to be careful of here is not to wear eye makeup at least 24 hours before the surgery and on the day of the surgery. If you don’t follow this instruction and the surgeon notices eye makeup on your eyes, your surgery could get postponed.
Another thing that you should avoid doing before getting LASIK is drinking alcohol or smoking cigarettes. This is especially important to avoid on the day before your surgery.
Alcohol can dehydrate your system, and that could delay the healing process. Of course, a couple of drinks is not such a big deal, but if you can avoid it completely, that’s the best way to go about it. Also, follow your surgeon’s guidance on this – if they say no alcohol on the day of surgery and a day before, then no alcohol it is.
It’s usually a good idea not to have Botox around the eye area before the surgery and for a few days (at least a week) after surgery as well. You can have Botox on your forehead 48 hours before LASIK, but if you can avoid doing the two procedures so close to each other, do so.
Pre LASIK FAQs
One-off questions are the reason for many phone calls we’ll receive from patients in the days leading up to their surgery. Below are some of their most frequently asked questions before LASIK surgery day. Hopefully, you will find these helpful.
Can I Take Ibuprofen before LASIK?
There are no limitations to taking Ibuprofen before surgery, so you can do that if you wish. But it is recommended that you take Ibuprofen or Tylenol after the surgery because it can help you feel more comfortable as the numbing drops in your eyes wear off.
The best thing to do after LASIK is to go home and sleep since that will help your eyes heal faster.
That’s why it’s best to clear your schedule after LASIK and just spend time recuperating at home.
Eat Whatever You Want Before Surgery
Again, there are no restrictions on what you can eat during LASIK surgery preparation. Of course, you will want to avoid overeating since you don’t want to spend time sitting on the toilet while waiting for your surgery time.
Also, you don’t want to overeat if you feel anxious, as that could result in nausea and maybe even vomiting.
You know your body best, so follow your body’s guidance and eat as much as you feel comfortable with.
What Should I Wear for the Day of Surgery?
It’s important to wear comfortable clothing on the day of the surgery. But nothing with wool or fleece, because that could create lint in the surgical suite and that’s a big no-no.
Inform Your Surgeon of Any Medications You Might On
As iterated earlier, you can take your medication as you wish on the day of the surgery and before it. But, it’s a very good idea to inform your surgeon of any medications you are on, in case there are any contraindications, and of your medical history.
Do not leave anything out, and do not hide anything related to your medical history from your surgeon. The more they know about you, the more likely it is that your surgery will go smoothly.
Hygiene & Beauty Products to Avoid on Surgery Day
Avoid wearing any alcohol-based products on the Day of your LASIK eye Surgery
You are not going to a fashion show on the day of the surgery; actually, you won’t be doing much of anything other than having surgery. The most commonly used alcohol-based products people use are hairspray, mousse, perfume, colognes, after-shaves, or anything with heavy fragrances like body lotions, creams, or fabric softeners. You’ll want to refrain from using any of these items on the day of surgery.
If you’re unsure if any of your personal hygiene products contain alcohol, just look at the ingredients. Avoid any products that contain alcohol. And err on the side of safety; if you don’t know, go without.
You can resume wearing these items a day after your surgery.
Be Properly Prepared
As you can see, it does take a bit of effort and diligence to know how to prepare for LASIK. But it is a surgery of a lifetime, and you are going to be astounded at how much your eyesight changes from before and after LASIK eye surgery. It’s worth taking the time to prepare for LASIK surgery properly and with care.
Are you ready to get your LASIK eye surgery consultation booked? Schedule a free consult today with Barnet Dulaney Perkins Eye Center.