If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you may have noticed that last week I finally took the plunge and got LASIK Eye Surgery. Let me tell you this was no easy decision for me to arrive at, but one I’m so glad I decided to finally go through with. I know anytime you’re talking about elective surgery, it can be very nerve-wrecking. There are questions of do the pros outweigh the cons, will this benefit me in the long run, what is the recovery time, how will it affect my day-to-day life. Trust me, I know, I’ve played them all out in my head for years. That’s why going through with this made me realize I really wanted to document how I was feeling and why I made this choice for myself in hopes that if you’re sitting on the fence about it, it may help you make the best choice for you as well. So I thought I would share a few tips for finding the right doctor and making the choice to have the procedure done.
I have to warn you that some of the pictures of graphic, of my eye ball, so I hope you’ll keep reading, but don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Do. Your. Research!
Seriously friends, there are a lot of options, so it’s very important that you do your research!
Here are some things that I did that helped me make my decision. Did they get rid of my nerves on the day of surgery, nope, that was the Xanax, but it did help me feel more comfortable with the process.
I’m always a firm believer in getting 3 bids for anything you do. So in this case, for me, it was consulting at least three LASIK Eye offices to decide which one would be the best fit for me. Friends, I can’t stress this enough, be comfortable in the office + with the doctor whose performing the surgery before you commit to anything. Trust your intuition, it may be the cleanest, nicest office, but if you don’t feel the connection the doctor or the nurses and assistants in the office, maybe it’s not the perfect for for you.
How did I chose my three consults?
First I asked my eye doctor for a reference. He works with a LASIK eye center and gave me a great reference. Second, I asked friends who I knew had gone through with the surgery about their experience. How did they like the office, doctor, surgery process. How the recovery was…. if they were glad they decided to do it. Third, there was a Groupon deal happening and so I went and consulted the office of the Groupon deal.
Pick the doctor you are most comfortable with.
I say this because all three offices I visited were nice, clean, professional, but there was something about Feinerman Vision when I walked in that made me feel as though I were at my home away from home. You know that feeling you get when you walk into Starbucks and everyone makes you feel like you’re the most important person and that you’ve known each other for years? That’s how I felt. From the moment I walked into the office …. a little late I might add (eek)… everyone was so nice to me.
But here’s the real reason why I chose Feinerman Vision.
Not only was the staff so incredibly nice, but they were thorough during all the tests. On some of the machines, when measuring my eyes, they did the measurements more than once just to be sure everything was 110% accurate. They asked me questions about myself, my family, asked to see pictures of my kids. Ummm… straight to the hear people, straight to the heart. And then, when they were done, I had the chance to spend time with Dr. Feinerman asking him any questions I had. Of all my consults, Dr. Feinerman was the only one who actually spent time getting to know me so that I could feel comfortable with him as my doctor.
Plus when Dr. Feinerman told me that the procedure came with him doing the Gangnam dance, well… shoot…. who would pass that up!?
I will tell you that on the day of the surgery I was a complete ball of nerves.
The surgery wasn’t until 1pm, so I had all morning long to think about what was about to happen.
I never questioned my decision, or the Dr. I had chosen, I was simply nervous about the unknown. You know that feeling where you just don’t know how it’s going to go, how you’ll feel after, how the recover will be? I had several people tell me that they slept for 18 hours straight afterwards, or that they had a burning or itchy feeling in their eyes after, so I just had no idea what to expect.
Dress comfortably and dress warm.
They will tell you this, but do what they say! I’m so glad I listened. I mean, I contemplated wearing a cute pair of jeans a tank top, some boots and a sweater and I’m so glad I didn’t. When you’re done having the surgery, you’re tired, in part from having some pre-surgery anxiety and from the Xanax and all you’ll want to do is go home and sleep. In fact, they tell you the best way to let your eyes heal the quickest is to go home and sleep for at least 4 hours. I’m pretty sure I feel asleep in the car and Kyle woke me up to walk me inside, where I climbed into bed and went back to sleep for 4 hours.
Can you imagine if I had to come home and change out of my comfy clothes into really comfy clothes?!
Before the surgery the nurses will go over all your antibiotic drop information with you, they’ll give you some fancy goggles to wear post surgery and they will give you your Xanax to help calm your nerves and help your body relax because you are awake during the surgery.
By the time I got to the operating room, was covered by this super comfy and warm blanket, I was feeling much more relaxed than I had been all morning. The music was already playing in the room. Top 40 hits are my favorite and for me, having some of my favorite songs playing during the surgery kept me a little distracted from what was going on.
After watching Dr. Feinerman rock the Gangnam dance we got started. He walked me through the entire procedure, although, I couldn’t tell you half of what he said because I was so focused on making sure I knew where the red light was so my eye ball stayed still.
The surgery itself took 15 minutes from start to finish.
I love this picture below of me that Kyle got. This was the first time in the almost 10 years we’ve been together that I was able to clearly see him without glasses or contacts. It was pretty incredible!!!
And just look at how
hot adorable Dr. Feinerman is! Who wouldn’t want him performing your surgery right?!
Wear the Goggles and Go to Bed!
I know I totally look like a mosquito here (a cute mosquito, right?), but I’m telling you these goggles are awesome! They give them to you to wear home and then you are required to wear them when you go home to nap and the first two nights after surgery.
The reason why you wear the goggles is so that as the numbing drops are wearing off you don’t scratch or touch your eyes while you are sleeping. The reason why they tell you go to home and sleep is so that your body is relaxed as the numbing drops wear off. I was told that as the numbing drops wear off your eyes will feel itchy, burning and irritable and so sleeping as much as you can help you to avoid feeling some of that discomfort.
I ended up coming home, sleeping for four hours, then Kyle woke me up so I could start on the antibiotic drops. Personally my eyes didn’t experience any itching or burning, but there is some discomfort and almost this feeling of dryness, even though the drops keep your eyes very moist.
Sleeping also helped me because you’re not allowed to be on your phone, iPad, computer or watch tv for the first 24 hours so to avoid feeling as though I was going to climb a wall…. sleeping kept me sane.
I learned that I’m a complete social media addict and I’m pretty sure that Kyle thought I was ridiculous making him read me all my emails, twitter messages and Instagram messages.
Follow the Antibiotic directions
Now I’m like most of you when I get prescribed antibiotics, I have a tendency to take them for a couple of days and then when I’m feeling better I’ll forget more than I’ll remember, but these are your eyes people. You don’t want to risk an infection. I will admit that trying to remember to put the eye drops in (not the meds) every 15 – 30 minutes the first couple days was a bit tasking, but I’m so glad I did it. I think it’s helped my healing process go so much more smoothly. As a result, even in the first follow-up visit the next afternoon, Dr. Feinerman said my eyes were healing so well and you couldn’t even tell I’d had LASIK eye surgery. When I look at my eyes up close in the mirror, I can’t tell either.
So set an alarm or do whatever you need to do to remember to use the antibiotic drops + and the eye drops.
I’m sure you’re all wondering about the recovery process. I had the surgery last Wednesday, so I’m on 5 of the recovery process. It’s been amazing to be able to see without needing to remember my glasses or my contacts. In fact, I feel as though I can see better than I could with my contacts. At my follow-up appointment I was able to see 20/15 and even got 2 of the 5 letters on the 20/10 line correct.
The first 24 hours were the most uncomfortable for me. I felt like my eyes were strained or dry when they weren’t and there was that underlying feeling of wanting to touch or itch my eyes, even though they weren’t necessarily itchy, simply because my body knew it had surgery and was healing. I might have even over used the eye drops just to keep my eyes comfortable. Since I spend most of my day on my phone or my computer, using these drops has become a key part in my recovery to ensure that my eyes don’t feel overly strained. I have also noticed that I find myself feeling sleepy after using the antibiotic drops, but that could be partially because I feel our bodies heal best when we are asleep because we are resting and it can do its job and partially because that’s how my body tends to respond to antibiotics in general.
If I could go back in time, would I still do it?
110% YES!! In fact, I would tell my younger self not to wait. I really do wish I would’ve done it sooner. I’ve been a candidate for over 5 years, but just continued to hesitate doing it.
Now if you want to watch it, here’s a video clip Kyle got during the surgery of the LASIK process in one eye.
If you’re in the Southern California area I highly recommend you visit Dr. Greg Feinerman at Feinerman Vision! I promise you’ll love him and you’ll be so happy you did it.
Oh and be sure to tell him I sent you so he can hook you up with the Friends + Family discount!
If you have any questions about the process, please feel free to email me: alissa [at] ragstostitchesblog [dot] com
How was your weekend friends? Did you do anything exciting?