With any procedure that enjoys as much popularity as LASIK eye surgery, there are bound to be some myths that circulate. Busting these myths for yourself is the first step toward learning the facts and deciding for yourself what you want to do next.
So, here are five myths about LASIK that you can put to rest in your mind.
Myth 1: It Will Hurt. The truth is that your eye doctor will take steps to ensure a more comfortable procedure. She will place anesthetic eye drops in your eyes to numb them for the actual work. After the numbness wears off, you may experience a little scratchiness for which many patients take over-the-counter pain relievers. The discomfort is mild and wears off quickly.
Myth 2: My Eyes are Too Bad for LASIK. It's true that early LASIK treatments could not correct some severe vision problems. Most often associated with this problem was astigmatism, which used to disqualify candidates. But modern technology has improved and now allows for correction of corneal shape problems that cause astigmatism, nearsightedness, and farsightedness. In addition, variations of LASIK are now possible for more serious vision correction.
Myth 3: I'll be Sidelined Afterward. If you're an active, busy person, you may be putting off LASIK because of the post-operative recovery time away from your favorite activities. But most people can resume normal activities after as little as a week. This includes exercising, wearing makeup, and swimming. You should be wary of contact sports for about a month, so scheduling your LASIK during the 'off-season' is an easy way to beat this challenge.
Myth 4: LASIK Is Still New. LASIK has become mainstream since it was first performed in 1991. Although you may not have heard much about it until recent years, it's actually grown into a common eye surgery for all types of people. Even those who rely on excellent vision, such as doctors and sports celebrities, have enjoyed LASIK.
Myth 5: I'll Still Need Glasses. The vast majority of LASIK patients experience such improvement in their vision — generally up to 20/25 vision — that they no longer need glasses. You may continue to use glasses while your eyes heal over the first few months. But unless your vision is extremely poor before the procedure, your results are likely to be, and remain, impressive enough to throw out your glasses or contacts.
To find out if you're a candidate for modern LASIK surgery and how much improvement you can expect, contact a qualified optometrist who specializes in it. Even if you've researched LASIK in the past, now is the time to take a fresh look at this treatment that could change your life.