May 16, 2019

How Does Alcohol Affect Laser Eye Surgery?


Read the full NZ Herald article here

If you’re booked in for LASIK, your eye doctor may have mentioned that it’s not a good idea to consume alcohol before and even after your operation. There are plenty of common questions about what you can and can’t do before and after the big day, and concerns about alcohol consumption might be one of them. After all, you might have a celebration to attend right before your operation, or you want to know how long to wait post-operation to start drinking again.

Our doctors here at Re:Vision are adamant on alcohol abstaining come surgery time. Learn why that is below.

Drinking before the operation

Even though it isn’t a major health concern, and there are no formal rules on how much you can or can’t drink before your operation, many ophthalmologists recommend limiting your drinking before laser eye surgery. The primary reason for this is because alcohol dehydrates your body, including your eyes. There have been some cases in which this causes discomfort during the healing process.

Secondly, alcohol can interfere with medication. If you are prescribed medication during or after the surgery, it’s important to feel confident in its ability to help.

Finally, you want to be as comfortable as possible for the operation, and unfortunately, a hangover is going to do nothing but make the procedure more stressful for you.

Laser eye operations are often the first surgeries people will have to undergo. Sometimes, this can cause anxiety, but it’s important not to drink in order to calm your nerves. The best thing you can do is be well-rested and alcohol will only hamper a good night’s sleep.

Drinking after the operation

Similarly, once you’ve had your operation, you probably want to unwind, and for many, this means a quiet drink. However, due to the healing process as mentioned earlier, it’s often recommended to abstain from drinking for a few days or up to a week. Giving your eyes as much time as they need to heal is vital, and dehydrating yourself will only extend the time it takes to fully recover.

It’s easy to forget that LASIK is a legitimate surgical procedure as it’s so quick and painless, with amazing outcomes, but you need to keep in mind that you have just been through an eye procedure, and so should act accordingly. It may be frustrating that you have to stay sober during social engagements after laser vision correction, but putting yourself and your recovery first is important even if it doesn’t feel like you need as much rest as is recommended.

What else should be avoided?

When planning the weeks after your operation, keep in mind that whilst 97% of our patients are seeing better than 20-20 within the first 24 hours after LASIK, we recommend having a driver bring you on the day of the procedure, and ideally to your first follow-up visit as well. Putting on makeup around the eyes should be avoided for around one week, and you should avoid having your eyes in direct contact with water. This means no swimming for around about two weeks; even using a sauna can present unnecessary complications. When showering, many patients opt to use goggles to keep water out of their eyes.

There are several things you should plan to avoid after your surgery. Ultimately, it shouldn’t be too difficult to factor alcohol into the list.

Want to know more?

To find out more about what to avoid before and after your procedure, get in touch with Re:Vision Sight Correction Centre, the best clinic for laser eye surgery Auckland wide. Our friendly team are more than happy to help answer any questions you might have, including those about the industry-leading technology we use, and our comprehensive financing options, which help you see as well as you deserve, without breaking the bank.

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