4 Ways To Reduce Your Anxiety Before LASIK Eye Surgery
LASIK eye surgery is one of the safest elective medical procedures available. It’s also one of the fastest. The whole procedure takes about 10 minutes for two eyes, although the actual laser itself is used on average for less than 20 seconds per eye. Many patients are surprised to learn how quick the overall procedure is.
Despite LASIK being an incredibly safe and effective procedure, some patients report feeling anxious or nervous ahead of their surgery – this is completely normal! That’s why we’ve rounded up the best tips and tricks to help you manage your nerves before your procedure.
Make a list of your questions or concerns.
It’s normal to have a variety of questions or concerns before your procedure, and part of our job is putting those worries to ease.
We encourage you to write down anything you want to ask ahead of your procedure and bring the list with you to your pre-operative appointment. Our team will be happy to go through all of your inquiries to make sure you fully understand the procedure and feel completely comfortable.
If you forgot to bring something up during your appointment, don’t worry! Feel free to reach out to us ahead of your procedure via phone or email with any questions. You’ll also have a chance to bring up any final queries on the day of your surgery.
Read how to prepare beforehand.
The more prepared you are for something beforehand, the more in control you generally feel. This is why we encourage all of our patients to read up on how to prepare ahead of their procedure.
We have a variety of materials to help you get ready. If you’re coming in for your first appointment, please review our checklist for how to prepare for your pre-operative consultation. Similarly, we ask that you review our checklist for how to prepare for your LASIK or PRK surgery.
It’s also a good idea to take a look at what to expect during and after the surgery. Review our pages on what to expect during the procedure as well as what to expect and how to prepare for your post-operative care. Additionally, we encourage you to watch this video to see all the steps patients go through when undergoing LASIK eye surgery. All of these resources can help make you feel prepared and at ease for your surgery.
Practice deep breathing.
Focusing on your breathing is an easy way to help you feel calmer during a stressful moment. As Very Well Health explains, when we’re stressed or anxious, our breathing is more likely to be shallow. This disrupts the oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in the body, and can lead to:
- Panic attacks
- Muscle tension
- Increased heartbeat
But this is where deep (diaphragmatic) breathing comes in. It works to stimulate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps regulate our heart rate, blood flow, and more. It can alleviate the uncomfortable symptoms of shallow breathing and help you feel better.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed ahead of your LASIK procedure, give a deep breathing exercise (or two) a try. Check out Healthline’s top ten breathing techniques aimed at relieving stress for inspiration!
If you feel consumed by your anxiety, then it could be a good idea to distract yourself. Take your mind off your LASIK procedure (or anything else bothering you) by focusing your energy on an activity.
To begin, create a list of the activities that you enjoy or boost your mood. Then, give one of them a try the next time you start to feel anxious to see if they’re a good distraction for you.
WebMD recommends choosing any sort of activity that interrupts your train of thought, even if only for a few seconds. Try standing up, stretching, going for a walk, or watching a funny video on YouTube (we recommend this clip of Taylor Swift reacting to hilarious footage of herself after her LASIK surgery).
Also, consider what you can do on the day of your procedure to keep your nerves at bay. For instance, you may find comfort listening to music while waiting for your surgery. Check out LASIK MD’s playlists on Spotify to find a wide selection of songs that will put your mind at ease before and after your surgery, and will also get you excited for your new vision!
While choosing to undergo LASIK eye surgery or another vision correction procedure is a big decision, it’s not one you should feel stressed about. Our team is here to answer all of your questions in order to put your mind at ease and to help you make a decision that’s right for you.
If you have any questions about our vision correction procedures or any concerns before your procedure, please get in contact with us. Or, if you haven’t taken the first steps towards clear vision, we invite you to book a free consultation with us where we’ll be happy to answer all your questions and recommend a procedure to you based on your needs.