Does Playing Sports Prevent You From Enjoying The Benefits Of LASIK?

Sports and Lasik

You may have heard by now that many athletes are enjoying the benefits of LASIK surgery. Many claim the procedure helps sharpen their visual acuity, thus making play easier while on the field. But, is LASIK really any safer than say, wearing contacts during a game?

Let's find out.

LASIK: Good For Some And Not For Others?
Some doctors suggest LASIK may be safer for some players than others. Much of it has to do with the amount of physical contact and the risk of having an object (like a ball or bat) hit the eye.

If you think about it, many sports put players at risk for injury to the eye. Some good examples include soccer, football, boxing, martial arts and baseball. Many doctors feel a surgeon must evaluate each person independently before they can decide whether LASIK procedures are safe for certain athletes.

When someone does have LASIK surgery performed, usually they are to refrain from vigorous sports, including football, for a minimum of two weeks. This suggests athletes interested in LASIK should consider having the procedure performed off-season.

What Did Athletes Do Before LASIK?
Before LASIK, many athletes had to wear contact lenses, glasses or go without while playing. These alone carry a risk, including a risk of breakage or damage to the cornea or retina on impact.

Athletes really did not have many options aside from contact lenses before LASIK. Now however, it is possible for athletes to enjoy the benefits of LASIK. They just have to know how to minimize their risk safely.

What Is The Risk?
For athletes the biggest risk following LASIK eye surgery is the risk for infection. It is important athletes refrain from high intensity sports until they are certain these activities are safe for them. Doctors often warn patients that bacteria and other pollutants may enter the eye from sweat or rapid movements following LASIK; this can result in irritation or damage to the newly improved cornea.

If you think about it logically however, the risk of wearing contacts during sports is just as high if not higher than LASIK. A contact lens wearer may lose a contact or worse, have one shatter from impact while playing. Contact lenses also place people at risk when they sweat from vigorous activity, allowing dirt and sweat to drip from the eyelashes into the eye. This can lead to irritation and discomfort.

LASIK surgery will allow many athletes to feel more comfortable while playing, partly because they won't have to worry about trapped bacteria under their contact. Do however, take your time and make sure you allow your eyes to heal well before getting "back into the game," or you may lose your vision. If you are not sure how long to wait before you can begin playing sports after LASIK, all you have to do is check in with your eye surgeon. Together the two of you can come up with a safe and practical plan allowing you to enjoy better vision and a better game!

Learn more about playing sports after LASIK eye surgery on our forums!