Steps To Take Following The Completion Of Cataract Surgery

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, approximately 24.5 million Americans have cataracts. This number reveals just how common the condition is. In order to prevent blindness and to restore as much sight as possible, the cataracts are removed in a surgical procedure that generally takes between 20 and 30 minutes. Once the surgery comes to a conclusion, there are a few steps patients must follow to ensure their eyes heal properly. 

Wear Your Eye Shield

Each patient is different; however, it is likely that you will go home with an eye shield. Your doctor may recommend you continue to wear the shield throughout the first day, or he may suggest you simply use it at night for the first week of recovery. The shield will not only give your eye a chance to rest, since you shouldn't read or watch television the first day after surgery, but it will also keep you from accidentally rubbing or scratching the eye. 

Use the Prescription Eye Drops

Plan on stopping by the pharmacy on your way home. Your doctor will require that you use prescription eye drops for at least a week once the cataract surgery is over. These include steroidal and non-steroidal drops for reducing inflammation and antibiotic drops for preventing an infection. Always follow the product label for the exact amount of drops and how often they need to be administered. 

Restrict Physical Activity

As mentioned above, you'll need to take the first day after surgery to simply rest. You'll be able to watch television and read again on the second day; however, your physical activity will still be restricted. It is best that you refrain from lifting any heavy equipment and that you don't bend forward to pick up any dropped items. A reaching tool is handy to have nearby for this purpose and if you don't own one, you may ask a friend to borrow theirs for a few days. Your ophthalmologist will let you know when you can return to work and this is typically just a few days after the cataract surgery. 

Attend All Follow-Up Appointments

It is important to show up at all of your scheduled follow-up visits once your cataract surgery is complete. While complications are rare, they do happen. Your doctor will be able to spot them early on and treat you accordingly. Also, your doctor needs to make sure your eyes are healing properly. Your vision isn't something you want to take a chance with so it is best to set aside time for these visits. For more information, check out an eye clinic like Leader Heights Eye Center.