Facing Cataract Surgery? A Few Things You Should Know

As people age, cataracts become an increasingly greater threat to their vision. The cloudy pockets of hazy vision that are caused by cataracts can interfere with daily life. If your eye doctor has suggested that you pursue treatment for cataracts, don't let the idea of surgery make you nervous. Here's a look at some of the things that you need to know about cataract surgery and recovery.

Getting Ready for Surgery

Cataract surgery is generally a simple procedure that's typically done in an outpatient office. You should plan to be at the office for a couple of hours after your surgery for the anesthesia to wear off. You should also expect to have someone with you to drive you home after the surgery. In fact, most doctors won't discharge you until someone is there to bring you home. You may be given a pair of protective sunglasses to wear for a day or so. Wear them if instructed to do so, because they will protect your eyes from light sensitivity.

Understanding Your Recovery Basics

You'll likely have to wait several days after your surgery before your vision clears up completely. During those recovery days, don't be startled if things still seem cloudy and blurry. You may even see some visible bruising around the affected eye. This is usually caused by the injection of anesthesia. In most cases, the bruising looks much like a black eye, and it will fade within a couple of days after your surgery.

Your doctor will probably send you home with an antibiotic eye drop. If so, make sure that you follow the dosing instructions precisely. The drops are designed to protect your eyes from infection while they're healing. You may also have an eye drop to treat inflammation. It is equally important that you use this one according to your doctor's directions.

Plan to have someone else do your driving for a few days following your surgery. Avoid anything strenuous, because your eye tissue is sensitive and needs to heal without additional straining. In addition, your eye doctor will likely tell you to skip the swimming pool for a few days to a week after surgery to protect your eyes from infections.

Although cataract surgery may seem serious, there's no reason to let it worry you. With the tips here and the help of your eye doctor, you'll be prepared to tackle the surgery and recovery with confidence. For more info, call your local optometrist.