LASIK Recovery Time: The First Day

what can I expect after LASIK surgery

The wonder of life after LASIK?

Many choose LASIK surgery for their laser eye procedure specifically because it tends to have a very fast visual recovery.

I have performed LASIK for over 16 years and have helped thousands through their LASIK recovery.

In addition, I have personally had LASIK.

LASIK Recovery

As I sat up from the laser after completing my LASIK, I noticed that my vision was already much better than when I entered the room.

It was better, but I was surprised that it still felt blurry, as though I had on the right glasses but they needed to defrost kind of blurry.

Prior to that time, I had always told my patients their vision would be a bit smoky as they sat up from the laser and a few of them had protested that, no, it was still blurry.  I now understood what they meant.

Clear “protectors” were taped over my eyes to prevent me from accidentally bumping my eyes and, after a brief recovery time, they let me head home with my wife.  I could see through the clear eye protectors, but they made everything look surreal.

Pain after LASIK?

I did not have any pain.

About ten minutes later the numbing wore off and my eyes felt some irritation that lasted for two hours.   The level of irritation felt the same as my eyes have felt on a hay fever day or on a day where I had some soap on my fingers when I put in my contact lenses.

This level of irritation is probably what you would experience with your LASIK since it is quite typical.  Rarely, the first two hours are more intense.  We provide some comfort drops for you, but most don’t need them at all.  Many just let the relaxing pill we prescribe help them take a nap during that time so they don’t have to worry about it either way.

Vision after LASIK

I took a nap for a couple hours after LASIK and when I awoke my vision was much clearer.  That same thing happened again later that night and by morning I was very pleased with my vision.

I remember waking up at 4:00 AM that morning, seeing the clock, rolling back over to go back to sleep, and then sitting up in bed and thinking, “Wow! I can see the clock!”  That occasioned a prayer of thanks to my maker for the miracle of vision.

If you take the relaxing pill before surgery (highly recommended) then you will probably take a good nap in the afternoon.  If you take a long nap and then go to bed at your normal time, then you will probably also sit up wide awake at around 4:o0 AM.  I can tell you that 4:00 AM will probably never look as good to you as it will that day!

The Morning after LASIK and the Rest of Your Life

The next morning I drove myself to my followup appointment.  I used the prescribed eye drops for a week and added some artificial tears a couple of times per day for the first month or so for intermittent dry eye.

I wore the eye protectors to bed for the first week.  I restarted exercise after a couple of days.  My eyes were more sensitive to wind for the first few weeks.  Mostly, I have just seen great ever since.

I love my eyes and the freedom from glasses that LASIK gives me.  Your individual LASIK recovery will vary, but my experience is typical.  To learn more about the first few weeks after LASIK please see my post, “What to expect after LASIK–The first month.”

If I can answer any other questions, please schedule a time to meet with me about your personal LASIK eye procedure.

 

 

Comments

  1. I work on a computer extensively, 8 to 10 hours a day. Would this be an issue the day after lasik surgery?

    • Katie: The age demographic for those having LASIK is filled with those spending much of their day on the computer. The only extra concern is that we unconsciously decrease our blink rate when we stare at a computer screen, presumably to not loose our place. This decreased blink rate increases dry eye. You would need to have some artificial tears by your computer workstation so you could pause at regular intervals to give your eyes a break and potentially add some artificial tears during the healing phase for the first 1-6 months.
      God Bless,
      Gary Foster