How to Properly Care for Your Eyes After LASIK Surgery

post surgery


LASIK surgery is a popular and effective procedure for correcting refractive vision errors. It involves reshaping the corneal tissue using advanced laser technology to improve vision. While LASIK is a common procedure with excellent results, proper postoperative care is crucial to ensure optimal healing and avoid complications. In this comprehensive guide, we will discuss the essential steps and precautions to take after LASIK surgery to promote a smooth recovery and maximize your visual outcomes.

Understanding the Importance of Postoperative Care

After LASIK surgery, your corneas undergo a healing process that takes several weeks. During this time, it is vital to provide your eyes with the necessary care to minimize the risk of infection, promote proper healing, and achieve the best possible visual results. By following the postoperative care instructions provided by your surgeon, you can optimize your recovery and enhance your overall LASIK experience.

Immediate Care After LASIK Surgery

Immediately after your LASIK procedure, it is normal to experience discomfort and mild pain. Your eyes may feel itchy, burning, and irritated, and you may have a sensation of having something foreign in your eyes. To ensure a smooth recovery, it is crucial to take certain precautions:

  • Arrange for Transportation: Since your vision may be temporarily blurry or unstable, it is important to have someone drive you home after LASIK surgery. If you need assistance on your day of surgery, our CLEI team will be happy to arrange transportation for you.
  • Use Sunglasses: Wear sunglasses on your way home to protect your eyes from bright sunlight and reduce discomfort caused by light sensitivity.Sunglasses will be provided for you in your CLEI post op kit which you will receive on the day of surgery.
  • Rest and Avoid Straining Your Eyes: Once you arrive home, it is recommended to take a nap or rest with your eyes closed for a two to three hours. This helps your eyes recover from the procedure and reduces the risk of inadvertently touching or rubbing them.

General Post-LASIK Care Instructions

In the days following your LASIK surgery, it is crucial to observe proper care practices to ensure optimal healing and minimize the risk of complications. Here are some general guidelines to follow:

Avoid Touching or Rubbing Your Eyes

Your eyes will be sensitive and prone to infection during the healing process. Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes to prevent damage to the corneal flap created during LASIK surgery. Touching your eyes can introduce bacteria or disrupt the healing process, potentially leading to complications.

Use Prescribed Eye Drops

To promote healing and reduce dryness, your surgeon will prescribe specific eye drops. To reduce stress, we will provide all of your initial drops for after surgery when you arrive on your surgery day.  Follow your surgeon’s instructions regarding the frequency and duration of using these eye drops. Proper use of prescribed medications will expedite the healing process and enhance your comfort.

Wear Protective Shields at Night

To protect your eyes while sleeping, it is recommended to wear the protective shields provided in your CLEI postop kit for one week after surgery. These shields prevent accidental rubbing or irritation of the eyes during sleep, ensuring the safety of the healing corneal flap.

Avoid Eye Makeup and Water Exposure

For at least one week after LASIK surgery, refrain from wearing eye makeup to minimize the risk of introducing particles or bacteria into your eyes. Additionally, avoid swimming and exposing your eyes to pool, beach or lake water, for the first two weeks after surgery. 

Limit Physical Activities and Exercise

While you may feel a quick improvement in your vision, it is important to avoid strenuous physical activities and exercise for the first few days after LASIK surgery. Activities that can potentially strain or impact your eyes, such as contact sports or vigorous exercise, should be avoided to prevent complications and ensure proper healing of the corneal tissue.

Protect Your Eyes from Dust and Environmental Irritants

To prevent irritation and protect your healing corneas, it is advisable to avoid dusty or dirty environments for at least a week after LASIK surgery. Exposure to dust, smoke, and other environmental irritants can cause discomfort and potentially lead to complications. If you need to be in such environments, consider wearing protective eyewear.

Take Time Off from Work and Computer Use

While most patients can return to work the day after LASIK surgery, it is essential to minimize activities that strain your eyes, such as prolonged computer use. Take regular breaks, blink frequently, and use lubricating eye drops to prevent dryness. Follow your surgeon’s recommendations regarding returning to work and using digital devices.

Attend Follow-Up Appointments

Regular follow-up appointments with your surgeon are crucial for monitoring your healing progress and ensuring optimal visual outcomes. Attend all scheduled appointments and discuss any concerns or questions you have with your surgeon. Our CLEI team will provide personalized guidance based on your specific needs and recovery progress.

Additional Tips for a Smooth Recovery

In addition to the general care instructions mentioned above, here are some extra tips to promote a smooth and successful recovery after LASIK surgery:

  • Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle: Eating a balanced diet, staying hydrated, and getting enough rest can contribute to overall healing and well-being. A healthy lifestyle supports the healing process and enhances your body’s ability to recover.
  • Protect Your Eyes from UV Radiation: Wear sunglasses with UV protection when outdoors, especially in the first month after LASIK surgery. UV radiation can be harmful to the healing corneal tissue, and protecting your eyes from excessive sunlight is essential.
  • Be Patient: It is normal to experience fluctuations in your vision and dryness in the weeks following LASIK surgery. Avoid comparing your progress with others and trust in the healing process. Your vision will continue to improve over time, and any temporary side effects will gradually subside. If any questions or concerns arise about your healing after surgery, a direct contact number to reach one of our refractive surgeons will be provided on the day of surgery.


Proper postoperative care is essential for a successful and comfortable recovery after LASIK surgery. By following the instructions provided by your surgeon and taking necessary precautions, you can minimize the risk of complications and achieve the best possible visual outcomes. Remember to attend all follow-up appointments and communicate any concerns or questions you have with our CLEI team. By caring for your eyes diligently, you can enjoy the long-term benefits of LASIK and experience improved vision for years to come. Book your LASIK with the Cornea and Laser Eye Institute here.

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