The sight is regarded as one of the most important of our senses and so are the eyes through which we see. Through the sense of sight, we go through our everyday routines with unparalleled ease. We are heavily dependent on sight most of the time and even as we interact.
Whenever we communicate to everybody around us, eye-to-eye contact is almost a must. From relaying the message to understanding emotions and even to observe reactions, we rely on what we see.
Entertainment has also been developed to better please the sight. The better we see things, the more we enjoy them. That is why the development of HD monitors and screen was welcomed by consumers of electronics. Modern gaming is even witnessing the introduction of the use of wearable eye gadgets for an improved gaming experience.
Important as it is, the eye needs to be protected and be well-cared. The organ is well-positioned for better perception and protection. Like most organs in the head, the eye ball is protected by the skull against hard objects. The frontal part of the human eye is also protected by the eyelid to prevent injury. Other glands also provides nourishment to eye tissues.
Despite the anatomic protection and proper care of the eyes, diseases and disorder may still affect the eyes and therefore the vision. Hence, it is important to cure and correct these conditions.
How We See
For us to see, the light that gets into the eyes through the hole in the eyes called ‘Pupil’ needs to be focused right at the tissue called the ‘Retina’ which is responsible for sending the message to the brain. To do this, our eyes have 2 lenses working with each other. The first one is called ‘Cornea’ which is located outside of the Pupil. The second one located behind the Pupil is simply called the Lens.
Any problem with the Cornea could affect the vision resulting in unwanted eye conditions. Common conditions are near-sightedness or myopia, farsightedness or hyperopia and astigmatism wherein images appear distorted or blurry whether near or far. These conditions are mainly due to light not focused on the Retina. If the light or image is focused before it reaches the retina when looking at a distant object, it results in myopia. When a nearby object appears to be blurry because image or light doesn’t come into focus before the retina is reached, then you get hyperopia. As for astigmatism, deformation or uneven surface of the cornea usually resulting to the image being focused twice causes all images to be distorted.
For the longest time, eyeglasses have been used to correct impaired vision. The device works by refracting or aligning the light so that the focus reaches the Retina. Through time, contact lenses were also developed so that they can be placed directly on the eye without the need for frames.
In the late 80’s and early 90’s, a newer approach is developed to address these eye conditions without the need for wearable devices and with permanent result. This method is the LASIK eye surgery.
The procedure primarily involves reshaping the Cornea to ensure that the focal point of the image reaches the Retina without having to rely on artificial lenses like eyeglasses and contact lenses. This is a one-time procedure done by ophthalmologists.
The entire procedure uses a machine run by computer system to ensure precision. The process starts by applying alcohol directly on the Epithelium so that the cells would weaken. Then, LASIK surgery equipment creates a flap of the Epithelium or the outermost layer covering the Cornea. The flap is then folded away from the laser field so that it doesn’t get in the way of the operation.
Once the outer layer is removed, the laser could now reshape the Cornea by applying laser in a finely controlled manner so that the tissues, which are usually tens of micrometers thick, evaporates. This procedure is much like shaping lenses to achieve the desire refraction of light and therefore ensuring that the focal point is right on the Retina. The process involves flattening the surface of the Cornea, to treat myopia, or making the surface much rounder for the treatment of hyperopia. As for astigmatism, the treatment works on making the surface of the Cornea much more even.
The process has both advantages and disadvantages as with other surgical procedures. But overall, the procedure has excellent success rates.
Like any photorefractive or laser surgeries, the procedure only needs to be done once and the result lasts, which means there is no need to use your eyeglasses or contact lenses anymore and no maintenance needed.
Computer-aided machines do the job which means fine precision.
Compared to other laser eye surgeries, LASIK has been proven to cause lesser quicker recovery and inflammation. It also causes lesser irritation and discomfort after the operation.
Better quality of life
After a successful operation, patients could expect to live a better life with better vision. When you can see things clearly immediately after opening your eyes without the need of eyeglasses or contact lenses, it surely means life is now hassle-free.
The eye might experience dryness after the procedure and therefore a bit of discomfort but are usually temporary. The patients are therefore usually prescribed anti-inflammatory eye-drops to address this.
Possible risks of the procedures may include loss of vision due to infection. Some patients have also reported cases of either under or over-corrected conditions. Any irregularity with the position and healing of the flap may also cause discomfort and may affect visual acuity though oftentimes could be corrected.
Most of the risks mentioned could be avoided by doing proper consultation and strictly following preoperative procedures to ensure that the eye is at its best condition. It is also necessary to follow the guidelines and care after the surgery to ensure that the eye recovers well and to avoid infection. Furthermore, patients need to find the best possible clinic offering the surgery since a more advanced equipment and a well-experienced ophthalmologists guarantees better chances of successful operation.