For many, LASIK surgery is a life-changing procedure. Once out of post-op, patients are always ecstatic to experience the clarity that improved vision offers and not having to deal with glasses. Everything seems perfect, but for some patients, there is one niggling issue.
Why are my eyes so dry?
You can rest easy knowing that dry eyes after LASIK eye surgery is one of the most common side effects that can occur after the procedure. For the vast majority of patients, this dryness quickly resolves itself over time. However, symptoms can still persist up to a year following surgery. During that time, here are three easy tips to help you deal with dry eyes while you recover from your operation.
1. Staying Hydrated and Changing Your Diet
It may seem a bit obvious, but staying hydrated can help keep your eyes moist and comfortable. Drink lots of water and try to cut back on coffee and dehydrating foods such as salty snacks. By keeping your body hydrated, your eyes will have more tears available to keep them moisturized and reduce irritation. Increasing your Omega-3 intake by eating fish or supplements has also been shown to benefit those who suffer from dry eyes. For a vegan alternative, flaxseed oil can also be used and is known to produce similar results. These changes can even be made before your operation to help provide a more comfortable post-op recovery. Trust us; your eyes will appreciate the change!
2. Eye Drops
Over-the-counter eye drops are a great way to bring relief to dry eyes after LASIK surgery. These drops lubricate your eyes and seal in moisture, which dramatically reduces eye dryness. Be sure to avoid eye drops with preservatives, as these preservatives can actually increase eye irritation. If the dryness is severely irritating, doctors can also prescribe medicated eye drops to relieve dryness and reduce irritation. These eye drops work by reducing inflammation, which allows your eyes to produce more tears. Be sure to talk with your doctor if you are dealing with eye dryness following your operation; they will be able to direct you to the right eye drops, depending on the severity of your irritation.
3. Collagen Punctal Plugs
If eye drops and dietary changes do not resolve your symptoms, Collagen Punctal Plugs can be installed into your tear ducts to prevent tears from draining away from your eyes. These plugs are tiny, cannot be seen, and are a great way to reduce symptoms as your eyes recover from your operation. After ten days, the plugs will dissolve, but longer-lasting silicon options are also available for those dealing with persistent irritation. If you are struggling with eye dryness after your operation and have not been able to resolve the issue using over-the-counter products, be sure to speak to your doctor.
For any of your LASIK surgery questions, we are always here to help. Don’t hesitate to contact us to book an appointment and speak to our doctor!