Is LASIK Right for You? | Troy, Luverne, Enterprise, & Ozark, Alabama LASIK (Laser) Refractive Surgery Candidacy
If you have blurry or cloudy vision and experience difficulty seeing images or objects from far away, you may have heard about eye surgeries to correct your vision. One of the most well-known surgical procedures for vision correction is LASIK.
How Do I Know If I’m Ready For LASIK? What Does It Mean To Be A LASIK Candidate?
If you want to get rid of eyeglasses and contact lenses for good, LASIK eye surgery is an effective, life-changing experience. However, it’s essential to first determine whether you’re a good candidate for the procedure. LASIK isn’t for everyone, and the considerations involved can help you make the right decision for you.
There are some basic requirements you should be aware of before considering LASIK. These include:
- Age: You must be above 18 years old to even be a candidate. You need to be at least 21 years old for the actual procedure. What’s the difference? It’s important for each patient to have a good understanding about the health of their eyes before age 21 and prepare for LASIK later on. That’s because in their younger years, children’s and adolescent’s eyes are still developing and their vision is unstable.It’s important to be certain that the patient’s vision has stabilized before thinking about surgical vision correction, and a well-trained surgeon likely won’t even consider a patient who is under 21. It’s a good idea to schedule a consultation at Family Eye & Laser so that Dr. Moring can perform a comprehensive eye exam and gain a complete picture of your eye health and vision needs.
- Likelihood of Improved Vision: Are you moderately or severely nearsighted? Do you have astigmatism, mild or moderate farsightedness, or presbyopia (farsightedness due to aging)? These questions are required so that the doctor can determine whether LASIK surgery can effectively correct your vision, if the timing is appropriate, and other factors related to your eyes.
- Eye Health: Previous history of eye injuries, Dry Eye disease, or contact lens overuse could mean that you have corneal scars or are susceptible to eye infections, without you even being aware of it. Some eye diseases and conditions can interfere with LASIK candidacy.
- Lying Down: The LASIK procedure is performed while you’re awake and lying down. The entire process takes approximately 15 minutes to complete on both eyes, so it’s a relatively quick process. If you find the idea of lying down and remaining awake during LASIK too difficult, speak with Dr. Moring. We will do everything we can to ensure your comfort before, during, and after surgery.
- Stay Focused: Unlike following the light shown by your eye doctor, LASIK surgery requires a patient to fixate their gaze at a point of light for 1 or 2 minutes for the procedure. Before treatment, the doctor will map your cornea’s shape for the procedure. Modern lasers can follow your eye movements exactly, and only correct the refractive error as needed based on the digital map we obtain. Your eyes will remain open for a short while through the aid of medical devices and anesthetic eye drops. The eye drops numb the eyes, preventing the urge to blink, while a small device holds your eyelids open for a virtually painless procedure. Your job is simply to look straight and focus on the light ahead.
- Planning: While the recovery is usually fast, you will need to stop wearing contact lenses at least 2-4 weeks prior to your LASIK consultation and surgery. The shape of your cornea needs to remain stable, and contact lenses have a tendency to affect its shape.
- Informed Consent Form: LASIK is an elective procedure, and your LASIK surgeon will require you to sign an informed consent form. This will ensure that you understand the surgical procedure as well as any potential risks. We encourage you to ask any questions and raise any concerns that you have so that you are well-informed and comfortable.
This short list may not be an exhaustive list of what your surgeon may share. Each patient and their eyes are different, so it’s vital to schedule a LASIK consultation. Contact Family Eye & Laser for a more informed decision about your eye health and LASIK candidacy.
Does LASIK Hurt?
Laser eye surgery may sound frightening, but the LASIK procedure is one of the most common vision correction surgeries today. It is usually painless, since your eyes will be numbed before the surgery begins. Some patients have reported feeling light pressure while the laser reshapes the cornea, but there is little-to-no discomfort.
Is LASIK Safe?
LASIK is the most common type of refractive eye surgery. The risks and complications are low and most patients don’t experience long term complications from the surgery. Vision is usually improved to 20/20 vision within just one day of the procedure. Modern LASIK technology has never been better at accurately correcting one’s vision, which has reduced the number of side effects drastically compared to that of even 15 years ago!
What Kind Of Results Can I Expect?
LASIK corrects your refractive error by directly shaping the cornea. This means that results depend solely on the health and state of your cornea, current prescriptions, and medical and family history.
Patients with frequent prescription changes or who are under 21 years of age may have less predictable results. Because of this, Dr. Moring will often require you to wait a short period of time before LASIK to ensure that your eyesight has achieved a good level of stability.
LASIK surgery has many benefits with low risks. Before deciding if the procedure is right for you, consider your current vision needs and what you want to achieve. Most importantly, speak with Dr. Moring and together you can determine whether you’re a good candidate for LASIK.