Fear: the elephant in the room for laser eye surgeons

Conducting Laser Eye Surgery safety checks at London Vision Clinic

It’s hard to ignore the look of dread on someone’s face.

And when that face is attached to a trembling patient standing in front of you, it’s even harder to ignore.

For the surgeon, it could be their ten-thousandth time performing Laser Eye Surgery, but for the patient, it’s usually always their first.

The machines, processes, and actions are all new. Even the smells are unfamiliar and strange to the senses.

The whole experience is different from anything the patient has ever done before. No matter how many hours of research they’ve done or how many different surgeries they’ve had, it’s impossible to know what it’ll truly be like until they’re there.

The clinic and staff

The environment of the clinic and its staff play a huge part in creating a calm atmosphere and settling any pre-operative nerves of patients.

Independent and private clinics do a great job at this. This is largely due to spending more time on individuals, not focusing on how many patients can be squeezed in a day.

What’s more, this means they can also invest in the design of the clinic, the amount of and the training of staff, and the overall quality of the patient experience. If you’re lucky (which our patients are) you may even be offered some chocolate biscuits and a head massage!

Read more about how independent Laser Eye Surgery Clinics differ from chains.

Relaxing before Laser Eye Surgery

Just as spending time in a stuffy waiting room can affect nerves before surgery, spending time in a chaotic environment and surrounding yourself with stress-inducing things or information can do the same.

And with Laser Eye Surgery, it’s certainly easy to pass the time reading sensationalist stories and opinion pieces on the internet. If there’s something worrying you, speak to an expert or consult a respected and authoritative resource. But by this time you will have probably had your assessment and meeting with your Laser Eye Surgeon, and so will have been provided with all the information and literature you need.

Many patients book some annual leave and plan to do something enjoyable in the time leading up the treatment, such as sending the kids to the in-laws and going on a spa break or weekend away. This way their mind is off the nerves and they look forward to the period away from the daily grind.

Preparing for the day of the procedure

Being well prepared has long been recognised as a way of calming nerves and improving chances of success. You know what they say, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”.

Although this advice is more suited to exams and launching a business than preparing for Laser Eye Surgery, we can use it to help us succeed in gaining a hold over our nerves.

Some of the things you can do include arranging time off work, organising transport for the journey home, booking a hotel or accommodation for the night if you are travelling, and arranging for child care on the day of the treatment.

Check out this more thorough list to get a better idea of how you can best prepare for Laser Eye Surgery.

If you’d like to book a consultation at London Vision Clinic, or find out more about the risks of Laser Eye Surgery, leave us a comment or give us a call us on 020 7224 1005.