Ever since I was fifteen I have been shortsighted. I had braces at the time and so, stupidly, ignored my deteriorating eyesight as I didn’t want to have both braces and glasses. Instead, I would just squint at the whiteboard and I soon became used to my bad eyesight, gradually becoming unaware that I was seeing everything slightly blurry. This came to an end, however, when I turned seventeen and began learning to drive. After my first lesson, I went to the opticians and got glasses and have worn them ever since whenever I drove, went to the cinema or was reading from the whiteboard in class (I was in slight denial about my need for glasses, I will admit). Then two years ago, when I got a car and would be required to wear glasses pretty much every day, I converted to contact lenses and they were amazing. Up until a week ago, I wore daily soft lenses and I highly recommend them if you don’t like glasses. I was happy wearing my contacts, but my mum – who also had bad eyesight – got laser eye surgery five years ago and has said since that it is one of the greatest things she has ever done, so when she suggested for my 21st birthday that I get laser eye surgery, I definitely couldn’t pass it up.
Though my birthday was in October, we were very busy through the winter months, so decided to leave surgery until after Christmas, and I finally got around to booking a consultation in early February. My mum got her laser eye surgery with Optical Express and had a great experience, so that is where we decided to go for mine. On February 11th, I had my consultation, where they test your vision, check your eyes are healthy and talk you through the different kinds of lens surgery there are available. All the staff at the opticians were very friendly and explained everything really thoroughly.After spending over an hour there and deciding to definitely to go through with it, it was decided I would receive LASIK laser eye surgery, and so it was booked, for February 24th. I received an information package, along with a booklet that I had to sign with lots of information on the procedure.
The two weeks leading up to the surgery flew by and before I knew it my mum was driving me into town to get the surgery. I had to stop wearing my contacts a week before my surgery as they change the shape of your cornea (who knew!) and had been wearing my glasses, so it was a great thought knowing after a few hours I would never have to wear them again. Again, the staff were really friendly and made me feel comfortable, easing my nerves slightly. After a few eye tests where a 3D image was taken of my eyes, and a run through of my aftercare, I was taken through to the surgery and by this point I was incredibly nervous. I have never been great with people going near my eyes, so the thought of having a laser pointed at my eyes was making me feel pretty on edge.
I received LASIK laser eye surgery, which is the most common form of surgery. There is also LASEK surgery which is an alternative chosen usually if you are not fully suitable for LASIK. I’m sure the two types of surgery are similar in price, however LASIK surgery has a faster recovery time, with LASEK surgery usually taking four-five days to recover.
From the time I first walked into the surgery to walking out again, only fifteen minuets had passed. Around five of which were spent with the nurses talking to me and putting the numbing antiseptic drops into my eyes. These drops stung slightly, however, that only lasted a few seconds and I was then told to close my eyes and relax. Once the surgery started I didn’t feel anything and the surgeon spoke to me reassuringly the whole time. Though (as horrifying as it sounds) in those ten minutes a ring was placed on my eyes whilst a laser cut a flap on my eyes allowing a then second laser to correct the cornea’s, I didn’t feel a thing and those ten minutes flew by incredibly quickly.After the procedure I was given my eye drops and was on my way. At this point, my eyesight was a little hazy, but I could tell immediately that my sight had improved. The only way to describe it if you can imagine having clear eyesight but the weather was rather foggy. I put on my sunglasses (I highly recommend bringing sunglasses with you) to help my eyes in case I had any light sensitivity and my mum drove me home. On the way home I felt the antiseptic wear off and my eyes began to water, became slightly gritty and felt very heavy – all natural symptoms. I kept my eyes closed the whole way home and, as recommended, went straight to bed for a few hours after taking two co-codomal to help with any discomfort.
After sleeping for around two hours my eyes were still watering and heavy. The heaviness did wear off quickly once I got up, however, though I did have to force myself to keep me eyes open. My eyes were slightly swollen around my lids, however, I believe that is due to wearing the goggles they provide whilst sleeping. They help protect your eyes when you sleep and are comfortable, however, leave my eyes slightly swollen for half an hour every morning. My eyes felt gritty and watery for the next six hours, and I noticed my eyesight improving throughout the night. When I woke up the following morning my eyesight was noticeably clearer and I was seeing better than I did whilst wearing my contacts. My eyes felt fine, slightly gritty at some points, but overall they felt normal. I had my check up that day, which is basically a check to see how your eyes look and how your vision is.
My procedure was on Wednesday and it has been an amazing experience. My vision is now perfect, my eyes are comfortable and I don’t even feel like I’ve had surgery done on them. If you are considering laser eye surgery, I highly recommend it; it’s not as scary or daunting as it seems and the results are worth any nerves you may have, and I promise it is such an amazing feeling to no longer need to wear contact lenses or glasses.
ps – I apologise for how long this post is, but I just wanted to give as much detail as possible. Also, if you have any questions about my surgery, feel free to ask away and I’ll answer the best I can!