mummyonmymind laser eye surgery

My Laser Eye Surgery (LASIK) Experience.

Exactly one week ago, I went through a life altering surgery, and I am so happy to have gone through it. Yes, I had my LASIK surgery done and survived to tell the tale…hehe! So here it is. (Just to add, this blog post is not at all sponsored by anyone. The decision to go through with this surgery was my own, and done by using my own funds.)

Also, due to the amount of interest in my procedure, I conducted a little Questions Poll on my instastories, and as promised, I have answered the FAQs at the end of this blog post. I hope it helps you. 🙂

My eye-sight background:

I have been wearing glasses for as long as I can remember, having been diagnosed with poor eye sight at a very young age. My darling mother did all she could to have me get rid of them because of the stigma attached in that day and age in the Indian culture, which is why I still vividly remember being given gallons of carrot juice to drink on a daily basis. (Spoiler alert: My poor eyesight was not cured by this old wives tale…)

My eyesight only deteriorated with each year, and a few years ago stabilised to a -4 in one eye, and -5 in the other. So yes, you could say I was pretty much blind without my glasses. Also, I am near sighted, so things that I hold up right against my nose I can see clearly, anything past that was a blur.

My decision to opt for LASIK:

Although I have tried wearing lenses, I found that it made my eyes quite itchy due to them being dry, so I was pretty much stuck with spectacles. Any glasses-wearer will tell you how inconvenient it can be, and I really detested wearing them. I could go on and on about why, but I’m sure you get the idea. So the thought of getting laser eye surgery done to eradicate this issue was very much a decided one…it was just a matter of when and where.

I began my research into it, reading up on the procedure, looking at vlogs of others that have done it and their experience as well as live recordings of laser eye surgery being done so that I knew what to expect. (I wouldn’t recommend you do this right before your own surgery though, especially if you are squeamish!) Last year, I made the call to get it done and visited an eye clinic. Unfortunately, I was turned away because I was breast feeding at the time, and apparently you can not get laser eye surgery done until 3 months after you wean off, due to the numbers fluctuating during that time and taking 3 months to settle.

So as soon as I weaned Little Z off breast milk, and made it past the 3 month mark, I booked myself in for my laser eye surgery! This time, it was a success!

mummyonmymind laser eye surgery

My LASIK Experience:

I got my laser eye surgery done at North American LASIK & Eye Surgery Centre LLC in Jumeriah, Dubai. At the time, they had a promotional offer of a LASIK package that included a free consultation prior to the surgery, the surgery itself and a follow up after; all for AED 3700.

At my first consultation, I met up with nurses that took my eye tests to determine whether I was eligible for the surgery itself. This very much depends case to case and on your astigmatism, so you will need to get a doctor’s opinion on this matter as I am no eye expert. There were quite a few tests done, but none in the least bit painful or even time consuming – it was only a matter of seconds scanning my eyes.

Once I was told that I was indeed eligible for the surgery, I was asked to make a decision if I wanted to go through with it. With my husband’s support and encouragement, I made the decision and was asked to pay a deposit of AED 500 towards my surgery. After this, I was given eye drops to dilate my pupils, and another eye test was taken. This took a total of 15 minutes as I had to wait for my pupils to enlarge. As soon as this step was completed, I booked my LASIK surgery for a week later on a Monday evening. At the exit, I was given a prescription of 3 eye drops, which I had to begin taking the day before my surgery 4 times a day.

mummyonmymind laser eye surgery

The day of the surgery:

Preparations include:

  • Do not use contact lenses on the day of the surgery.
  • Do not drive your car, let someone else drive for you.
  • Do not put any eye make up on.

I returned to the eye centre for my surgery scheduled at 4:30 pm on Monday October 14th, arriving half an hour in advance as instructed. One more quick eye test, I was taken into the Operation Theatre at exactly 4:30 pm.

First, numbing eye drops were put into my eyes and I was asked to wear scrubs for hygiene purposes. I removed my glasses for the last time and laid down on the operation bed as instructed, making sure to fold my hands in front of me and remembering to breathe. The doctor arrived, introducing himself as Dr Abdulla, and asked whether I preferred English or Arabic. He put me at ease right away. I am someone who likes to be told what is going on, so I was very happy because the doctor was explaining what he was doing for the entire procedure, second by second. Without getting into the gory specifics of the surgery itself, he first operated on my right eye, putting a clip on my eye to stop me from blinking, covering the left with a cotton pad, and switching to the other one when the first was done.

Did I feel pain? Honestly, not a thing. Even when he said that I might feel a little pressure, I hardly felt anything. The laser itself did smell like something was burning, something that the doctor warned me before it switched on, but he counted down 20 seconds each time, and really made it a comfortable experience. I was in and out within about 10-15 minutes, with the laser beam itself lasting 20 seconds in each eye.

Once I was done, my vision was blurred around the edges, but I could still very much see. In fact, I walked up a flight of stairs, with my glasses in my hands. There was still no pain, and slowly my vision began to clear a little. Another eye test was conducted to ensure the operation went smoothly, and I was done!

After the surgery:

I wore sunglasses on my way out, walking by myself into the car that my husband drove. I was told that the numbing drops would wear off after about 3-4 hours, after which I would experience burning in my eyes, but ensured me that this was totally normal. Since we had the kids with us, and it was a school night, we went for a quick bite of Shawarma before heading home. As I reached home, I could feel the burning sensation creeping in, and kept my sunglasses on. I found myself not being able to open my eyes so got into bed and lay there in the dark.

I was asked not to fall asleep until 10 pm that night, as much as I really wanted to. My husband put the prescribed eye drops every two hours as instructed whilst I listened to the radio and podcasts to keep myself awake. I was not allowed to watch any digital screens that day, not that I could even if I wanted to, because a few hours in and my eyes were burning so I kept them clamped shut. I had some panadol to ease the pain (The nurse said I could if the pain became unbearable, which it kind of was.) I can only describe the pain as if my eye balls were being held quite tightly and squeezed, whilst burning as if I had cut one too many onions. I also felt a little pain under my eye lids where I presume the clips had been put to keep my eyes open during the procedure. It also felt like there was dirt in my eye, but again this is all normal. There was no redness or swelling though, and my eyes looked perfectly normal. The whole thing was probably only made more challenging because Little Z decided he wanted to be clingy and only put to sleep by me, so I did that…blind as a bat with my eyes clamped shut! haha! Thankfully, my husband was totally supportive throughout and pretty much did everything, even when I snapped at him. (I remember shouting at Mr Z to google how long this burning sensation would last for, to hear him reply “Google says a few hours!” haha! Sorry, Mr Z!)

I woke up in the night a couple of times, only because of a cranky Little Z, but breathed a sigh of relief as I realised that the pain had lessened each time I woke up. The next morning, there was absolutely NO pain whatsoever. Apart from getting slightly blurry as my eyes adjusted, it was as if nothing had happened at all. It was the best feeling ever, and I couldn’t stop beaming with happiness. Every minute of the short lived pain the night before was well worth it.

Post Surgery Care

Expect your vision to be a little blurred, this will only get better with time. I had my follow up two days after the procedure, where another eye test confirmed a successful surgery and that my eyes were healing well. Here’s a list of things I was asked to do after the surgery:

  • Wear sunglasses when outdoors.
  • Put your anti-inflammatory and antibiotics eye drops as prescribed
  • You may take a shower the day after the surgery, but avoid getting water, soap or shampoo in your eyes. Rinse your hair by tilting your head back in the shower.
  • Avoid hot tubs and swimming pools for a month after surgery.
  • Avoid rubbing or touching the eyes for 24 hours after the surgery.
  • Avoid driving a car until your vision is clear. For me, this was about 2 days.
  • Avoid putting eye-make up (eye liner, eye shadow, mascara) for about 2 weeks.
  • Avoid any strenuous activity such as contact sports.
mummyonmymind laser eye surgery

Most Frequently Asked Questions:

I conducted a questions poll on my Instastories last week, and have answered the FAQs below. If there are any other specific questions, feel free to drop me a DM, and I would be happy to help in any way I can.

  1. Does it hurt? 
    During the procedure – No, not one bit. Several hours after the procedure when the numbing drops wear off – Yes, it burns ALOT, but this lasts approximately 4-6 hours.
  2. What was your eye power? 
    -4 in one eye and -5 in the other.
  3. How long does the surgery take?
    In total, maybe 10-15 minutes. Super short!
  4. What is the price of the procedure and where did you get it done?
    I paid AED 3700 for the surgery at North American LASIK & Eye Surgery Centre LLC in Jumeirah. The prescribed eye drops were purchased separately.
  5. Can you bath after the surgery? Can you go out after the surgery? Can you work on computers after the surgery?
    Yes, Yes, Yes, you can do pretty much everything normally 24 hours after the surgery. Refer back to the Post Surgery Care paragraph above for more details.
  6. What are the side effects/risks? 
    As with any surgery, risks are always present. Temporary effects of LASIK include hazy vision, scratchiness, glare, halos or starbursts around light, light sensitivity, small pink or red patches on the whiteness of the eyes. This really varies from person to person, and so far, I have not experienced any negative side effects, having taken all the precautions as instructed.
  7. Can your power return back later on, making the surgery useless?
    I asked this question to my doctor directly, and she replied that in 98% of people, the power does not return. I have heard first hand of people saying their eyesight has regressed, but only after 10 years or so, which it will do any way due to the ageing process. To each their own, but for me personally, it’s completely worth it because I will at least get to be glasses free for ten whole years!
  8. When is it best to get the surgery done, as I have school going kids – weekday or weekends? 
    As a mother, I purposely chose an evening time so I would not have to parent kids during the day after the procedure, and could go to sleep after, letting my eyes do the healing whilst my kids were sleeping too. I would advise you to go for a weekend so your partner can be as involved during the entire thing as possible.
  9. “I’m afraid that I will go blind….” How did I overcome my fear of the “laser going wrong”? 
    So there is absolutely NO chance of you going completely blind in both eyes after the surgery. NONE. Can there be complications? As with any surgery, yes, but at the same time, the doctors who you choose to do your surgery will have done this a million times before and are professionals at it. It’s their job. Trust them, and above all, trust in God.
  10. Would I recommend it? 
    In a heart beat. It’s one of the best decisions I have ever made, and I would do it again if I had to. Those few hours of eye pain are a good enough sacrifice for being able to see clearly without my glasses, no doubt. One week on, and I can do pretty much everything normally, whilst being able to see perfectly well. I am taking the necessary precautions of course, but feel like a new woman!

If you got this far, WELL DONE and THANK YOU! I hope you found this post helpful. Let me know if you have gone through LASIK yourself or plan to do so, and feel free to drop me any questions if you still have any!

mummyonmymind laser eye surgery

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