When left untreated, cataracts can cause your vision to become blurry or cloudy, which can interfere with your daily activities. Fortunately, cataracts can be removed through surgery. Cataract surgery is one of the safest types of surgeries, and the recovery time for a cataract operation is relatively quick.
If you’re scheduled to undergo cataract surgery and you want your recovery time to be as fast and painless as possible, follow the tips below.
Recovery Tips to Follow Immediately after Surgery
Cataract surgery typically only takes about ten minutes, but you shouldn’t plan to rush out of your eye clinic as soon as the procedure is complete. You should:
- Avoid bending or leaning over immediately after the surgery, as this can put pressure on your eyes.
- Wait in the eye clinic’s recovery area after your cataract surgery until you no longer feel groggy. This may take 30-60 minutes.
- Be aware of your surroundings, and be careful not to bump into doors or furniture as your vision adjusts.
- Plan on having someone pick you up. You shouldn’t drive immediately post-cataract surgery.
- Wear sunglasses when you leave the clinic (to protect your eyes from bright light)
|Removing a cataract will result in clearer vision after your recovery period. Source: nih.gov|
Recovery Tips for the Weeks after Your Surgery
Some people report that their vision appears “wavy” or distorted immediately after cataract surgery, but this should only last for an hour or two after the procedure. In many cases, people experience clear and improved vision the same day as their surgery. However, even if your vision recovers quickly, there are still a few precautions you should take. You should:
- Keep all follow-up appointments with your eye doctor. You may need to see your eye doctor the day after your cataract surgery to ensure that your recovery is going smoothly and is without complications.
- Follow your eye doctor’s instructions for using prescription eye drops. Your eye doctor may prescribe you an antibiotic eye medication (such as Azasite) to prevent bacterial infections. He or she may also prescribe an anti-inflammatory eye drop (such as Prolensa) to bring down eye swelling.
- Don’t overexert yourself. Avoid strenuous activities for one to two weeks following surgery (ask your eye doctor for specific instructions).
- Avoid swimming pools and hot tubs for one to two weeks. This will reduce your risk of getting an eye infection.
- Keep irritants out of your eyes. Try to avoid environments where you might get dust or grime in your eyes. If you need to be outside on a windy day, consider wearing sunglasses to protect your eyes.
- Don’t rub your eyes. This is a good rule to follow even when you’re not in recovery from cataract surgery; frequently rubbing your eyes can cause damage to your corneas.
Follow these rules—and all instructions provided by your eye doctor—and you’ll be well on your way to clear, complication-free vision.