My thoughts on eye surgery

There has been an awful lot of marketing and advertising about laser eye treatments/eye surgery. It does sound exciting, the fact of having no more glasses and contact lenses, and having the freedom of clear vision. But is it really worth it? Considering that it is traumatising the eyes themselves.

I do know someone who has had it, and so it seems to have “worked” for them. But when I heard of things like this it got me a little excited. This was even after trying eye exercises off and on for a while (obviously my eyesight improved, but I was still myopic to a fair degree). This excitement was before doing further research into what actually goes on in the surgery. It would be stupid to say that this surgery does not damage the eye. It does damage it. If you are not familiar with eye surgery then you really should research it. Someone who has Myopia (short sightedness) has an American football shaped eye, so the focal point is not at the retina, but somewhere forward of there. What eye surgery does is it slices a flap of the cornea, peels it back, a laser then peels a tiny layer from under the flap, and then the flap is replaced. What this essentially does is force the light to focus at the retina. As you can hear from the description it does not sound too nice. Who would choose to have that done? We can also see that it actually treats the symptoms but not the cause. The real reason the eyes became weak in the first place has not been remedied, the eyes are likely to deteriorate. Granted it may take a number of years for this to happen, but it is likely to happen. There is an alternative though. Learning to relax your eyes while strengthening them through exercise. Embarking on an eye exercise routine can be done, like any exercise, at varying levels i.e. for a few minutes now and again, or embarking on a regimen of up to 30 minutes each day. This takes some dedication, and results are not immediately seen. But persistence will pay off.

More information about exercising the eyes can be found elsewhere on this site. For example, The muscles of the eye and how to exercise them is an article I wrote which teaches you exactly how to do that. Even a few minutes of eye exercise per day helps. You can take these exercises as far as you like. Here is a great video that can show you how to deal with computer eye strain. After all, you are reading this on a computer! It doesn’t take very long to do, and if you are using a computer you should be taking regular breaks. Remember the 10-10-10 rule.

Vision Correction

Glasses have been around for centuries to help improve and provide clearer vision. More modern methods of vision correction such as contact lenses and eye surgery are more advanced, but actually treat the symptoms rather than the cause, just as glasses do. Even pinhole glasses have been used to focus light rays on the retina.

It is believed that glasses promote further deterioration of the eyes, and prevent natural healing. Glasses put additional strain on the eyes. Natural vision coaches recommend their clients stop wearing, or at least get a reduced prescription, when using natural vision correction methods. Natural vision coaches teach that if the eyes are relaxed and reconditioned, vision will improve. Eye exercises are used to train coordination and flexibility for muscles in and around the eye. They strengthen the muscles and nerves in the brain and vision system to help correct vision.

Relaxed central vision is a key to natural eyesight improvement according to the natural vision coaches, or Bates Method practitioners. However there is some debate whether natural vision correction is valid. For example it is not recognized by the American Optometric Association.

People that practice natural vision correction usually are not licensed professionals however; some licensed professionals may practice natural correction on the side.

The benefits of natural vision correction are that it is a non-invasive, natural, and holistic method that can be used alongside other vision aids such as glasses and contact lenses. There is no risk involved whilst trying natural vision correction methods. The downside is that it can take time to notice any benefits.

Lasik Eye Surgery

Lasik stands for laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis, and is a surgical procedure used to “cure” shortsightedness, longsightedness, or astigmatism. “Keratomileusis” is the carving of the cornea in order to reshape it. Lasik Permanently changes the shape of the cornea using a special lazer called an eximer lazer.

As the laser reshapes the cornea, it changes the angle at which you see images and therefore strengthens your vision significantly. This reshaping adjusts and strengthens the power of your cornea to focus on objects near and far. If you are nearsighted, your doctor uses the laser to flatten your cornea that is too-steep. If you are farsighted, your doctor uses the laser to make your cornea steeper because it is too flat. For astigmatism, the laser can be used to smooth an irregular cornea into a more smooth shape. There are few other procedures like Lasik Eye Surgery that can give you these amazing results and permanently change the shape of your cornea in just minutes.

The lasic procedure of lasik is:

  • A suction ring is placed on the eye to stabalize and monitor pressure
  • A microkeratome, a cutting instrument, is attached to the suction ring. This blade cuts a flap in the cornea
  • The exposed inner layer of the cornea is reshaped with an eximer lazer
  • The corneal flap is returned to the original position

The patient walks in to the surgery, have the procedure, and walk out again being awake the whole time. The doctor performing the surgery may also administer a mild oral sedative.

The marketing for this procedure says that lasik provides benefit to millions of people, however, it doesn’t really solve the underlying cause of poor vision. If they were myopic before, their eye is still mis-shapen. They may be able to see perfectly well after the surgery, but years down the line myopia may return. There are also possibilities of complications that could affect your vision.