When you’re looking for LASIK eye surgery near me, one of the questions you may be asking is “how old do you have to be to get LASIK?” The truth is there is no set age at which you become a good candidate for LASIK, and to understand why that’s the case, you need to know a bit about the procedure and about how your eye doctor can tell if LASIK is right for you.
What Is LASIK?
LASIK is a type of laser treatment for eyes that corrects nearsightedness, farsightedness and astigmatism, as long as they are not too severe. It involves opening a flap in the cornea, which allows the surgeon to go in and reshape it so that it can properly focus the light entering your eye.
For instance, a nearsighted person has a cornea that’s too steep, and a farsighted person has a cornea that’s not steep enough. Both of these issues can be addressed through LASIK surgery, allowing the patient to see clearly without glasses or contacts once their eyes have healed.
Who Is a Good Candidate for LASIK?
There are a number of different elements your optometrist will consider when determining if you are a good candidate for LASIK. These include the presence of an underlying eye disease or condition such as dry eyes, cataracts or uncontrolled glaucoma. If these are present, they will often have to be treated and resolved before LASIK can be performed.
You also must have a prescription that’s not too extreme, regardless of whether you’re suffering from nearsightedness or farsightedness. That’s because extreme vision problems are likely the result of an extremely misshapen cornea that would require an excessive modification or removal of corneal tissue to correct. Additionally, your cornea must be of a sufficient thickness to tolerate the procedure.
Age does play a role in determining whether you’re a good candidate for LASIK, but there is no set or guaranteed age at which you automatically qualify. Some procedures are only available to patients over 18, while others require you to be 21, but even then, you also have to have had a stable prescription for at least 12 months prior to LASIK being performed. Many teenagers and young adults have prescriptions that change frequently, and only once that fluctuation is over can LASIK be considered an option.
What Your Optometrist Can Do
If you’re interested in LASIK surgery, our optometrist will complete a thorough evaluation to determine how viable of a candidate you are. This evaluation includes a complete eye exam, review of your medical history to ensure that you have no other health issues that could preclude you, and a discussion of your expectations to help you understand what will happen before, during and after the procedure. Our doctor will also help manage your recovery after LASIK, checking to see that your eyes are progressing properly in their healing and also assisting you in managing any temporary side effects like dry eyes or glare.
Make an Appointment
To learn more about the services we offer or to schedule an appointment, call our Plano office at (972) 378-4104 or our Celina office at (972) 382-2020 today.