Cataract surgery recovery shouldn’t be something long and painful, as long as your overall health is good and there aren’t other major eye problems. According to statistics, a patient’s chances at recovering quickly and gaining sharper vision after surgery are pretty great!

Even though cataract sounds and looks like it will take long to deal with, it in facts takes about 10 minutes to perform. After the operation is done, you will need to rest for about 30 minutes to an hour in a recovery area until you are less groggy from anesthesia or sedation. Before the surgery, ask someone to pick you up after the procedure is done, as you will not be allowed to drive. To protect your eye from bright light and glare on your way home, you’ll be given a pair of sunglasses.

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You shouldn’t feel worried if you happen to feel a bit tired or sleepy when you get home. If you feel the need, rest in bed for a few hours. You will have a protective shield placed over your eye – don’t remove it until instructed to. That is, follow through with whatever your cataract surgeon advised you. You’ll probably be advised not to remove it for several hours after the procedure. Also, remember that you’ll need to be careful about the shield – will need to tape it back over your eye during naps or at night, just for protection and during recovery. This will last for several days.

What Is the Typical Cataract Surgery Recovery Time?

At first, after you remove your eye shield, your vision will be a bit blurry, distorted and cloudy. Some patients have even reported having “wavy” vision or distortions, although this phenomenon doesn’t last longer than an hour or so. Don’t be alarmed, though – this is absolutely normal. After all, your eye went through a shock – cataract was removed and now it needs some time to adjust to the intraocular lens used to replace your eye’s natural lens.

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It’s not excluded that you develop bloodshot and red eyes. This happens due to temporary damage to blood vessels on the surface of the “white” of your eye (sclera) when cataract surgery was performed. The redness should dissolve quickly as your eye heals – it’ll all be normal within several days. In case you feel “scratchiness” or your eye appears dry, it’s just one of the sensations typical for post-op time.

You may notice some bruising similar to a black eye in case you had an injection of anesthesia. This “black eye” will manifest only if the shot was injected through the skin into the lower portion of your eye. Again, no need to worry – this will fade within a few days.

Overall, it takes about a month for your eye to recover completely.

To Achieve the Best Cataract Surgery…

Many patients get pleasantly surprised at how good they feel after the surgery. Also, many say they are able to resume normal activities even the day after they have had cataract surgery done. Still, no matter how “easy” everything feels, you should listen to all advice your surgeon gave you and observe a few precautions, at least during the first week or so. This will help you not sustaining an injury to your eye while it heals or avoid developing an infection. You will be prescribed anti-inflammatory eye drops to help reduce any internal inflammation as well as eye drops to prevent infection. While you are on recovery, you will have to apply those eye drops several times a day.

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To heal even better and faster, observe these tips:

  • For a few weeks after the surgery you are advised not to do any heavy lifting or strenuous activity; also, avoid bending over because you want to avoid putting extra pressure on your eye
  • Try not to vomit or sneeze after the surgery
  • When walking after the surgery, be extra careful – don’t bump into doors and similar
  • Avoid using a hot tub or swimming during the first week, just to reduce the risk of infection
  • Try not to expose your eye to irritants such as dust, wind and grime during the healing process, that is – first few weeks after surgery. If you need to go out on food, wear glasses to reduce the risk of your eye catching an irritant
  • Don’t rub your eye

In case you need a cataract surgery done on both eyes, your surgeon will probably do them one at the time, leaving a period of about two weeks for one eye to heal before performing a procedure on the other one.

Author bio:

Diana Smith is a full time mom of two beautiful girls interested in health and alternative medicine. In her free time she enjoys exploring natural ways to deal with eye problems.