LASIK surgery permanently corrects the refractive errors that cause nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism. The treatment offers predictable, reliable results, along with a quick recovery period. Because of its great safety profile, it is no surprise that millions of patients choose to undergo LASIK vision correction surgery. Many patients who wish to undergo LASIK surgery are athletes who regularly play contact sports. Fortunately, LASIK can be performed on patients who engage in contact sports. At Chicago Cornea Consultants™, Ltd., we will perform a thorough LASIK screening to determine if you are a good candidate for treatment. If you decide to move forward with surgery, our doctors will educate you about the potential dangers of playing sports in the weeks after surgery, and advise you as to how long you should avoid engaging in contact sports after LASIK.
How Athletes Can Benefit from LASIK Surgery
Whether you play football, basketball, soccer, or another contact sport, or if you regularly play a non-contact sport such as golfing or tennis, you can benefit from LASIK surgery. For the vast majority of patients, LASIK results in 20/20 vision, eliminating the need for contact lenses or eyeglasses.
Anyone who has worn contact lenses while playing a sport can probably remember a time when a lens accidentally became dislodged after bumping into another player. Or, some sort of debris or dust has gotten into the eye, causing eye irritation. In either of these cases, the player typically needs to take a few minutes out of the game to remove or adjust the contact lens. Even after the lens has been addressed, the player may experience some eye discomfort.
Because of these problems with contact lenses, many players use special eye goggles to produce clear vision. However, these visual aids come with disadvantages as well. Eye goggles may feel uncomfortable, and they do not provide excellent peripheral vision.
For many athletes, the superior option is LASIK surgery, which can dramatically improve vision and do away with the need for contact lenses or glasses.
The Dangers of Contact Sports after LASIK
Athletes who decide to undergo LASIK surgery must be willing to stop playing for a few weeks after LASIK surgery. In the days and weeks after LASIK, the corneal flap that was created during surgery is still healing. To achieve the best LASIK results, it is important to prevent injury to the corneal flap. If an opposing player or a piece of equipment hits the eyes, it can increase the risk of the flap becoming dislodged, or cause infection.
How Soon Can I Play Contact Sports after LASIK Surgery?
To prevent an eye injury or infection, we recommend that athletes avoid engaging in contact sports for one month after surgery. Many athletes choose to undergo LASIK at the beginning of the off-season. After one month, we may advise you to wear protective eye gear for a few months. During your post-operative appointments, we will monitor your healing progress, and provide you with instructions to ensure that you achieve the best possible LASIK outcome.
To schedule your LASIK consultation, contact Chicago Cornea Consultants™, Ltd.