Cataract Surgery Recovery

Undergoing surgery of any kind tends to bring on worry and anxiety. One way to alleviate those feelings is by learning what to do after surgery before it takes place. Your surgeon will typically provide you with a list of written instructions during your pre-surgical visits.


The best thing to do is to ask for help from your friends or family. Give them a copy of your written recovery instructions and ask them to keep it handy. That ensures both you and your friend know what to do to help make your recovery trouble-free.


Rest After Cataract Surgery


Most folks are sedated during their cataract surgery. Immediately following the surgery, follow your doctor’s directions and rest in the recovery area before your friend or family member takes you home. Plan to rest there for at least 30 minutes to one hour. Once home, take it easy and relax. Feeling fatigued is normal for a couple of weeks following cataract surgery. Advance planning will make your recovery much easier and effective.  The last thing your eye needs is any additional pressure put on it if you strain to lift or bend repeatedly.


Eye Protection is Essential


After surgery, you’ll have a protective covering over your eye. Keep it in place and wear sunglasses whenever you are outside. Plan to keep the protective shield in place for the time period recommended by your surgeon. Normally the covering is used to protect your eyes for several days.


Protecting your eye from infection is extremely important following cataract surgery. Avoid swimming for at least one week after surgery. Swimming pools, saunas, and hot tubs often contain harmful bacteria. After cataract surgery, your eye is more susceptible to infection. Do everything you can to avoid exposing it to contamination.


Try to avoid rubbing your eyes, as you may inadvertently injure healing tissues. If you live in an area prone to windy days, try to stay indoors as you should not risk dirt, dust or debris hitting your eye. Use care when walking around. Bumping into doors or walls is easy to do when still off-balance from sedation.


Although new techniques allow your surgeon to place drops in your eyes during surgery, many cataract surgery patients still require eye drops after undergoing a cataract procedure. Take care to follow your surgeon’s directions and put drops in your eye as prescribed. This can make the difference between serious complications and successful recovery.

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