LASIK and Your Return to the Digital World
Our modern standard of living revolves largely around the everyday use of technology. Most homes have at least one television and usually several more electronic devices. From gaming consoles to cellular phones to desktops and tablets, our devices are what help us get through the day. We rely on these devices in our professional life as much as our social life. It comes as no surprise to us when patients want to know how long of a break they will need to take from technology after a procedure like LASIK.
One of the advantages of LASIK laser vision correction is that this procedure is completed quickly and requires relatively little downtime for recovery. The eyes have an incredible ability to recuperate without much intervention. Usually, patients can begin using electronic devices approximately 24 hours after a LASIK procedure. The key word here is begin.
Supporting Eye Health after LASIK
One of the most common side effects of LASIK eye surgery is dryness. It is believed that dryness results from the disruption of the cornea during LASIK. Because nerves may become desensitized, the need for ocular lubrication may not be reliable after surgery. As healing occurs and nerve endings regenerate, lubrication should return to normal. Until then, the use of digital devices may exacerbate this side effect so should be approached with caution.
Computer, television, and other electronics use is not completely prohibited after LASIK. However, ophthalmologists recommend a gradual return to regular activity and strategies such as:
- Spend only a few minutes at a time in front of any screen. Increase screen time gradually by a few minutes each time.
- When using a digital device (even watching television), close your eyes for a few seconds as needed to prevent dryness. Blinking frequently promotes tear production. Sitting with your eyes closed inhibits strain that can lead to discomfort.
- Rest as often and as much as needed after LASIK. The body regenerates while we sleep, making rest one of the most valuable things we can do after surgery.
- Apply prescription eye drops as directed by your LASIK surgeon.
The Eye Institute of Houston offers LASIK and other vision-correcting procedures. To learn more, call (713) 668-7337.