The rewards available for those contemplating laser eye treatment can be life changing. Laser eye surgery treatment can be carried out by many providers, but not all offer the same level of treatment and aftercare expected of such a procedure.
The exact treatment that best suits you depends on why you wish to have the procedure and what your current eyesight levels are.
You may want to have laser eye treatment to cure the following ailments:
- Near-sightedness (myopia)
- Far-sightedness (hyperopia)
Like many who undergo the treatment, you may want to have laser eye surgery treatment simply to free yourself from the hassle of having to wear glasses or contact lenses. Many who wear glasses or contacts will know that everyday activities are affected by glasses and contact lenses. From reaching for your glasses in the morning, to removing your contacts at night, and restricting your sporting activities due to a fear of them falling out, the freedom of laser eye surgery is evident to all.
If you are near-sighted, your cornea is steeply curved or elongated. This lengthening of the cornea makes it harder for light rays to reach the back of your eye resulting in blurred distant vision. Almost one-fourth of adults in the UK suffer from near-sightedness.
Alternatively, if you are long-sighted your cornea is either too flat or your eye is shorter in length than average. The result is light rays reaching too far beyond the retina, and so giving you clearer distance vision but blurred near vision. About 10% of children in the UK are affected by far-sightedness and should undergo a thorough eye test early in their lives to diagnose this.
Astigmatism results from a cornea that is oval-shaped or slightly stretched. Your eye therefore creates two different focal points that your eye picks up on – and can create distorted vision. Astigmatism affects up to one third of the UK population – both mildly and severely.
A cataract is a clouding over of the eye that prevents light from passing through smoothly – or a complete or partial opacity of the ocular lens of the eye. Cataracts can develop in one or both eyes and usually is worse in one eye than the other. The greatest cause of cataracts is undoubtedly age. However there has been links to diabetes sufferers, smokers, those exposed long-term to bright sunlight, those previously exposed to lead and radiation exposure. Approximately 50% of people aged 65 or over have some degree of lens clouding. Also, it is estimated that the amount of people suffering from cataracts is likely to rise exponentially due to people living longer. Luckily, this condition can be easily treated with surgery.
If you happen to suffer from cataracts, a refractive operation is the only solution to permanently cure this condition. An eye specialist will be able to diagnose this.
The different treatments on offer to treat the issues above depend on your myopic sight levels. The most popular treatment is LASIK laser eye surgery. This is a highly advanced laser and in the vast majority of cases is the treatment that you will be recommended. If a patient is unsuitable for a LASIK procedure the next option is LASEK. Before LASIK and LASEK there was PRK, however with advances in technology it is now perceived as old and outdated, and clinics that still use this treatment are not at the forefront of the laser industry. If you are unsure which treatment is best for you your laser eye consultant will be able to advise on the best way forward. However, in order to gain a good insight into laser eye treatment research the procedure further by researching the procedure from people who have had it done before.