Recovering from LASIK laser eye surgery usually doesn’t take more than a couple of days, but you may find your exercise regime is affected for several weeks afterwards.
Immediately after the surgery, you will find that you can’t see out of the affected eye very well, and in fact it is recommended to keep a patch over it, as you’ll find yourself sensitive to light.
You’ll also find it tempting to rub the eye once the anesthetic has worn off – avoid this as much as possible, as you could end up doing permanent damage. You need to keep your eye protected while it heals, so avoid any exercise on the day of the procedure.
Generally speaking, it’s usually possible to start running again the day after your surgery, although many eye specialists will recommend you leave it a week to allow your body to fully recover.
After your vision has returned, you’ll be able to resume gentle exercise, but bear in mind the risks involved – cycling outdoors or other activities where you may end up with dust or grit in your eye are not recommended.
If you do exercise outdoors, wear a pair of sunglasses, which will keep your eyes more protected from physical elements, wind and sun. Yoga and other slow exercises are also acceptable, but ensure you are not straining yourself too hard, and wear a headband to prevent perspiration getting into your eyes.
If you’re working out in a gym, try to avoid the machines near fans or air conditioning, as these can dry your eyes out.
You should avoid swimming for 4-8 weeks, as well as any team or contact sports. During laser eye surgery, the surface of your eye is sliced open, and this can take time to heal over again. In the meantime you will likely be given eye drops and instructions to help the process along, but you can do your own part by keeping your eyes protected.
Take a look at Ultralase’s guidelines for more tips on how to recover from laser eye surgery. The whole procedure is relatively painless, so don’t let this minor change in workout put you off – you may never need worry about damaging glasses or contacts again once it’s complete!