One of the eyes’ most important abilities is its focusing power, allowing a person to view elements both near and far. But as a person becomes older and, hopefully, wiser, the eye’s ability to focus declines. That’s a condition called presbyopia, and it inevitably affects most people 40 and older. Perhaps presbyopia, along with graying hair, is what we exchange for wisdom and maturity.
Dealing with presbyopia usually involves wearing reading glasses. But today, there’s an emerging technology that claims to permanently correct a person’s blurry vision. This technology is called LASIK or Laser-Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis. Is LASIK the best solution for you and presbyopia?
Lasers aren’t a solution for all
LASIK is a surgical procedure. Of course, surgeries present risks that people may not be willing to take. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some of the risks of undergoing the procedure include losing a portion of your vision, experiencing troubling visual symptoms such as double vision, halos, and glares, and developing severe dry eye syndrome.
At the same time, the long-term effects and lasting effectiveness of LASIK, a relatively new technology, are still unknown. The first such surgery was performed as recently as 1998. And there is still doubt about how long the effectiveness of LASIK will last. After all, the eye’s ability to focus will continue to decline with age. With the risk of partial blindness, visual anomalies, and the probability of still suffering from blurry vision despite LASIK surgery, some people may find it healthier and more practical to use great looking or reading glasses.
Some still need reading glasses post-op
Most people assume that this surgery can effectively and permanently correct vision blurred by presbyopia. However, LASIK cannot accomplish these goals. In fact, eye surgeons do not guarantee corrected vision after one operation. Sometimes, additional treatments are needed. And even after surgery, it is still recommended that patients continue to wear reading glasses, especially when the patient is involved in activities that crucially need clear vision, such as painting, driving and operating heavy equipment. That makes the idea of LASIK less appealing. Wouldn’t it be more sensible to simply use reading glasses, instead of undergoing surgery?
Prohibitive health requirements
Despite the appeal of laser eye surgery, some people simply cannot undergo the procedure, the result of health issues. For example, if the patient has diabetes, the condition rules out the option of surgery for correcting blurry vision. The fluctuating hormones of the diabetic make the refracting ability of the eyes unsteady.
Taking medications may also affect one’s hormones. Thus, a person who regularly takes medications may not consider Laser-Assisted In-Situ Keratomileusis as an option.
Aside from health issues, a person’s daily activities may preclude LASIK. Activities that include contact sports, such as wrestling and boxing, may have a detrimental effect on eyes that have undergone surgery. It would be defeating to lose the benefits of an expensive surgery to a quick right hook.
And finally, women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should forego any plans of getting LASIK. The surgery may have harmful effects on her and on her baby.
For minor vision problems, the best option is still to use reading glasses. When compared to laser eye surgery, the risks are practically nonexistent. At the same time, frames can be selected to flatter the face and express your personality!