Recovery from Eye Surgery

After surgery, most of the healing takes place in the first few days. But it may take up to 1 month for your eye to fully heal. For the first week or two, or as your doctor recommends, you should minimize vigorous physical activity. You should restrict any lifting or deep bending, which causes increased eye pressure.

If you experience severe pain, loss of vision or a sudden increase in redness or swelling of your operated eye, call your eye doctor right away.

DOs and DON'Ts

  • Do use your medication as directed.
  • Do sit down and lift your feet to put on your shoes.
  • Do try to sleep on your back or on the unoperated side.
  • Do have someone else drive while your eye is healing.
  • Do wear sunglasses in bright light.
  • Do keep follow-up appointments with your doctor.
  • Do keep moderately active.
  • Don’t rub or press your eye.
  • Don’t bend over to pick things up; kneel instead.
  • Don’t get soap, shampoo or other irritants in your eye.

Take care of your eye

These pointers can help you recover more quickly:

Applying eye medications
Use the eye drops or ointment that your doctor prescribed to help your eye heal. This medicine protects against infection and helps decrease swelling.

How to apply eye drops or ointment
Tilt your head back. Pull your lower eyelid down to create a “cup” that holds the drops or ointment. Put in the prescribed amount of medicine and close your eye to distribute it evenly. If you have trouble doing this, ask a friend or relative for help. Start with a fresh bottle of medicine after surgery so germs don’t get transferred.

Eye shields
Your doctor may want you to use an eye shield at night to protect your eye while you sleep.