7 Signs You’ve Recovered From Cataract Surgery & Can Hit The Beach

If you live in Honolulu, we don’t blame you if you want to spend every second on the beach! But after cataract surgery, that’s not exactly wise.

Honolulu beaches are stunning. Sparkling waters, pristine sand, and picture-perfect sights as far as the eye can see!

If you have cataracts, you need to take your cataract surgery recovery seriously. Keep reading for 7 signs that you’ve recovered from cataract surgery and can hit the beach once more!

1. Your vision is no longer blurry

One of the most common side effects after cataract surgery is blurry vision. It can take several days to a week for your vision to stabilize and be less blurry.

If your vision has been stable and hasn’t been blurry for a few weeks to a month, this is a sign that recovery has started!

2. You’ve avoided swimming and strenuous activities for several weeks

old man surfing ocean

After cataract surgery, your eyes are more susceptible to infection and complications. Swimming is a bad idea because water is a place where bacteria can grow.

Since your eyes aren’t at their best, you’re more likely to get an infection from the water.

Strenuous exercising should be avoided for the first few weeks after cataract surgery. Your eyes are much more sensitive than normal.

Any kind of strenuous activities, exercise included, could cause damage. It’s best to sit back, relax, and let your body heal itself during your cataract surgery recovery!

3. Your doctor has already cleared you to drive

Old lady in care looking at camera.

When you had cataracts, it’s likely that driving was one of the things that you weren’t able to do. After cataract surgery, you can’t drive again until your doctor clears you as being safe to do so.

But if you’ve been cleared, this is a good sign! This means that your vision has stabilized enough to be trusted to get behind the wheel of a car again.

Trust us, your days at the beach and on the sand aren’t far behind you either!

4. Cataract surgery was weeks ago and you haven’t experienced any complications

The full process of recovering from cataract surgery can take several months, if not a full year. But that’s because the eyes can take a long time to fully recover.

For most people, after a month or two, their eyes have adjusted enough and they can see better than ever before. If you have any of the following symptoms, you should let your ophthalmologist know:

  • nausea
  • light flashes or excess floaters
  • vision loss
  • pain that continues even after using OTC medications

It’s a good sign that you haven’t experienced any of the above symptoms or had complications.

5. It’s been several weeks and now you’ve recovered from cataract surgery on your other eye

Most cataract surgeons prefer to perform cataract surgery on a patient one eye at a time. If you’ve now had surgery on both eyes and recovered from both procedures, your vision is at its best!

The importance of waiting between procedures may not make a lot of sense to patients. But to doctors, it’s quite logical.

If you have cataract surgery on both eyes at once, it’s much harder to see. A patient can fall, trip, or have some kind of injury because they can’t see with both eyes recovering at the same time.

Having cataract surgery several weeks apart solves this problem. It allows patients enough time to heal and their eyes enough time to adjust.

After all, the biggest part of cataract surgery involves taking out the natural lens of the eye. It’s then replaced with an artificial lens or IOL.

The IOL is where the magic happens! But it can take the eyes a little time to get used to them, which is why it’s easier to spread out cataract surgery.

6. You’ve been diligent about not wearing makeup until cleared by your doctor

Older woman applying lipstick

Remember when we told you that water is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria? The same goes for makeup.

Wearing makeup is another way that your eyes can get an infection after cataract surgery. You shouldn’t wear makeup until you’ve been cleared by your doctor.

Even after your doctor does clear you, you should throw out your old makeup, especially eye makeup. This goes for eye shadow, eyeliner, and mascara.

Old makeup is just plain dangerous after cataract surgery! To be as safe as possible, buy brand new makeup after cataract surgery.

Think of it as an extra treat to go with your brand new and improved eyesight! Do you really want to run the risk of a severe eye infection because you were too stubborn to buy new makeup?

7. You asked your doctor and they said you can go back to the beach!

Landscape shot of Hawai'i

Look, here’s a surefire way to know if you’ve recovered from cataract surgery and can go to the beach: ask your doctor! They can check your eyes and confirm that it’s safe for you to go back in the water.

Above all, you want to be safe when you go back to swimming, splashing, and enjoying all the beauty of Honolulu, right?

Wondering if it’s time for you to have cataract surgery? Contact the experts at Sugiki Portis Yim Eye Center in Honolulu, HI to schedule a cataract screening today! Isn’t it time to see the world with crystal clear clarity again?

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