Proper eye care is required after LASIK. Rubbing eyes soon after LASIK surgery is a strict no-no as it may lead to various complications. Rubbing eyes may result in corneal damage, keratoconus, and may dislodge the corneal flap If done soon after the procedure within a month .Do not rub your eyes at least for 2-3 weeks after LASIK surgery.
During LASIK surgery, the surgeon forms a thin corneal flap with the use of the microkeratome. The flap is then lifted to expose the underlying corneal tissue. With the excimer laser, the cornea is then reshaped according to the correction necessary to be treated of the eye of the patient. The surgeon then repositions the flap to its original place.
As the corneal flap requires time to heal, eye care is of utmost importance for the success of LASIK surgery. The doctor will provide a pair of glasses to protect the eyes from the external environment and touching or rubbing your eyes. The doctor advises the patients to take care of the eyes until the eyes heal naturally. There is a healing process after surgery, thus you should not rub your eyes soon after the procedure.
It is always advisable to avoid rubbing your eyes whether you have undergone ocular surgery or not. However, in the case of ocular surgery, the risk of complications increases due to the rubbing of the eyes. Following are some of the risk of rubbing eyes after LASIK surgery:
Eye infection: After the LASIK surgery, there is an increased risk of post-surgical infection. The doctor prescribes a topical antibiotic to reduce this risk. While rubbing your eyes, you may end up with eye infection due to contaminated hands.
Dislodged flap: As mentioned above, the corneal flap is formed to expose the underlying corneal tissue. Healing of corneal flap requires one weeks time. Rubbing of eyes before healing of corneal flap may lead to vision related problems and may result in reduced vision.
Weakening of the cornea (Corneal Ectasia) rubbing your eyes may give a sense of relief, but doing it frequently for a prolonged period may result in weakening of the cornea. This may also change the shape of the cornea, a condition known as Ectatic cornea.
Dark Circles: Continuously rubbing your eyes may also result in an increased incidence of dark circles. This is because of the damage to the blood vessels of the eyelids due to continuous rubbing. Avoid rubbing your eyes after LASIK surgery.
Increased eye pressure: It is to be noted that the eye is a sensitive part of the body. Rubbing the eyes may result in increased eye pressure. In a healthy individual, this might not pose any risk as the pressure returns to normal after some time. However, in patients with ocular diseases, this may lead to an eye problem.
Eye injury: People who rub their eyes may end up damaging the corneal surface. It is because if any particle irritates the eyes and the person rubs the eye, the particle may make a scratch on the cornea. This may result in distorted vision. The best way to get rid of the foreign particle is to thoroughly wash the eyes with normal water and use eye lubricants drops.
Allergic reactions: Rubbing the eyes may also result in allergic eye reactions. The patient may experience redness and watery eyes.
Because of the advancement of technology in performing the LASIK surgery, the risk of complications is far less as they were a few years before. However, proper eye care is required. Although it is advised that you should not rub your eyes if you have undergone LASIK surgery, you should wait at least for 2-3 weeks. This is the time required for your cornea to heal and get back to normal.
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