Glaucoma refers to elevated intraocular, or eye pressure, that can develop as a result of advancing age, heredity, genetics, certain medications, or pre-existing health conditions. While glaucoma is often asymptomatic, it can cause severe eye pain, headache, visual problems, and nausea.
When elevations in eye pressure becomes exceedingly high, your eye doctor may recommend that you undergo surgery to help relieve the pressure. While recovery from glaucoma surgery is typically uneventful, there are certain things that can raise your risk for complications such as infection, rebound elevated eye pressure, pain, bleeding, and infection. Here are three things that may raise your risk for post-operative complications and what you can do about them:
Bending down or stooping over to tie your shoes can result in elevated eye pressure after your surgery. Your eye doctor may advise you to avoid stooping or bending for a few days after your procedure to help ensure that your eye pressure doesn't rise again, which may subsequently lead to blurred or double vision, or increased eye pain. If you have dropped something that you need to pick up, bend down slowly, and avoid looking down. This will help keep your eye pressure within normal limits and help reduce your risk for intraocular pressure spikes.
If you suffer from allergies or experience frequent bouts of nasal congestion, talk to your doctor before taking any medication. Certain allergy medications such as oral decongestants may need to be avoided in people who have glaucoma or in those who have recently undergone laser surgery to treat glaucoma. Decongestants can raise your eye pressure before, during, and after glaucoma surgery.
Alternatives to using decongestant medications include using a vaporizer, drinking tea, eating spicy foods, and taking hot showers. These natural treatments will help reduce inflammation in your nasal passages and sinuses without raising your eye pressure. You should also avoid using decongestant nasal sprays, and instead rely on saline nasal spray. Saline sprays help clear out your nasal passages without medication side effects, and are typically safe for everyone, including children.
Cigarette smoking can also increase eye pressure after glaucoma surgery. In addition, smoking can damage the small capillaries in your eye, and because of this, your ocular circulation may become impaired. If intraocular circulation is impeded in any way, healing may be delayed, and your risk for infection may increase.
If you smoke, try quitting prior to your surgery. If you are unable to quit completely, at least try cutting down for a few days after your surgery. If you need help quitting, your doctor can recommend smoking cessations therapies that will not affect the outcome of your eye surgery.
If you have glaucoma and are facing surgery, avoid taking decongestants, smoking, and bending down for a few days after your procedure. After your surgery, if you develop increased eye pain, headache, nausea, eye redness, or problems with your vision, call your eye surgeon immediately. The sooner post-operative problems are recognized and treated, the more likely you'll be to enjoy a positive outcome. For more information, visit websites like http://montgomeryeye.com/.