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Dry eye plagues millions of Americans every year, and the number is on the rise. Dry eye causes a wide range of symptoms like grittiness, itchy eyes, watery eyes, soreness and more.

These symptoms not only affect your life, but they can make you ineligible for LASIK.

Temporary dry eye after LASIK is a very common side effect. But a pre-existing dry eye condition can get worse after LASIK.

This is because, during LASIK, some of the nerves in the cornea get cut through. This makes the cornea less sensitive. It also makes it less responsive to signals that the eye needs hydration.

Uncontrolled dry eye can make recovering from LASIK more difficult. It can also leave you with a dangerous urge to rub your eyes that’s almost impossible to resist.

These reasons are why the condition needs to under control before getting LASIK. Wondering how this is possible? Keep reading to learn more!

Clearing Up Dry Eye

Chronic dry eye can occur because of many different factors. The easiest way to understand it is to break it down into two main reasons.

Either your eyes aren’t producing enough tears or the tears produced are low quality. Low-quality tears are usually missing important components like a water or oil layer.

If you aren’t producing enough tears, you can supplement your eyes with eye drops. If your symptoms are severe enough, ask your eye doctor for prescription eye drops.

These can help replace any tears that your eyes aren’t producing. You can also try punctal plugs, which keep your tears on the surface of the eye longer.

If your tears don’t have all the ingredients that they need to make tears, they are likely missing the oil. When tears don’t have enough oil, they evaporate from the eye too quickly.

When tears evaporate faster than they should, nutrients can’t be absorbed. This is often fixed by unblocking the glands that produce the oil. These glands (which are meibomian glands) can become blocked by a waxy discharge.

Other LASIK Disqualifiers

Dry eye isn’t the only thing you will need to think about when looking into LASIK. There are many situations and conditions that make you a bad LASIK candidate. Here are some good examples:

  • You cannot be pregnant during LASIK.
  • You must be older than 18.
  • Your vision must be stable for 1 year.
  • Your eyes cannot be injured.
  • You must be free from eye diseases.
  • You must not have any autoimmune disorders or diseases that make it difficult for you to heal.
  • Your prescription must be within a certain range.
  • You must be in generally good health.

The rules around LASIK may seem extensive, but they are only there to ensure the operation goes well. More importantly, these rules make sure you have the safest and shortest recovery.

Ready to start your visual journey towards seeing clearly? Schedule your LASIK consultation at Atlantic Laser Center in Little Silver, New Jersey! This is your chance to say goodbye to glasses and contacts! Will you take it?