LASIK and Sports

Do you dream of being the next Tiger Woods or LeBron James? Or are you just tired of messing with contacts or glasses before and during sport activities? Like many sports stars of the world (including Tiger and LeBron!), you should consider LASIK eye surgery.

Don’t let glasses or contacts hold you back from your favorite activities. Contacts or glasses can get in the way of any physical activities such as surfing, running, or golfing. If you’ve ever lost a contact in the water or had to wear sunglasses instead of your prescription glasses while playing tennis, you know the inconvenience of poor vision. By correcting your vision you not only won’t have to mess with glasses or contacts, you’ll also run the chance that LASIK will actually enhance your athletic performance (as well as your vision!)

Advantages of LASIK:

  • Around 96% of patients will have their desired vision after LASIK
  • LASIK is associated with very little pain due to numbing drops
  • Vision is corrected nearly immediately or the day after LASIK
  • No bandages or stitches are required after LASIK
  • Adjustments can be made years after LASIK to further correct vision if vision changes while you age
  • After having LASIK, most patients have a dramatic reduction in eyeglass or contact lens dependence and many patients no longer need them at all

Resuming Normal Activities After LASIK

After LASIK surgery, patients can return to normal activities normally the next day. The restrictions following LASIK surgery include no swimming for two weeks or heavy weight lifting for three days. After LASIK, you can return to most sports immediately and contact sports very soon.

Healing after LASIK eye surgery usually occurs very rapidly. Vision may be blurry and hazy for the first day, but most patients notice improved vision within a few days of surgery. In order to determine candidacy for LASIK, you must have your eyes examined by a LASIK specialist. If you are considering the surgery, contact Dr. Schneider today for your consultation.

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World Series Special!

San Francisco Giants third-baseman Pablo Sandoval had LASIK on his left eye last October, and said, when the 2012 season began, that he sees the ball better. After trying contact lenses and eyeglasses (well, goggles on the field!), he decided it was time for LASIK. That is good news for the team, all season long, and especially now that the Giants just took the National League championship, winning the playoff series against the St. Louis Cardinals on October 22. The Giants now have a shot to win the World Series against the Detroit Tigers beginning October 24.

Pablo Sandoval – affectionately called “Kung Fu Panda” – certainly used his LASIK-corrected eyesight to dominate in the playoffs: hitting .310 (13-for-42), with three homeruns, and seven RBI. During the regular season, Kung Fu Panda hit an amazing .330, 25 homeruns, and 44 doubles, with a very low strikeout total of 68, making his “contact rate” very high – this is where the vision comes into play – as baseball players from a very young age are coached to “Keep your eye on the ball,” and see it leave the bat! The Panda said earlier this year that if the LASIK for his left eye was successful he may have the procedure for his right eye as well. If so, we can only imagine how much better he will be batting next year!

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64% of Americans Watch NFL Football!?

The story of Dr. Christopher Smith’s offer of free LASIK to the NFL’s replacement referees, who officiated during the first three weeks of the NFL 2012 season, went global! It turns out he works directly with LASIK surgeons Stephen Dudley, M.D., and Gerald Clarke, M.D., in Green Bay and Appleton, Wisconsin.

Now that the National Football League has settled their contract dispute with the regular NFL officials we can all breathe a sigh of relief and look forward to a more “normal” season. To be fair, we dug a little deeper into understanding exactly who the replacement referees were, and it turns out that they are college football refs who really didn’t have time to get up to speed on the more complex NFL rules nor handle the faster pace of the professional-level game.

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NFL Refs Offered Free LASIK

Do we need more official eyes on the football field or just ones that can see better?

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“EYE on the Ball”

The London 2012 Summer Olympics have just concluded, but the importance of vision in sports continues on. Recent statistics show that about 75 percent of Americans wear eyeglasses or contact lenses, and we can imagine the number of athletes included in that figure. For anyone who has played sports and worn contacts or glasses, especially, what a hassle! One of our patients remembers when he was in his early teens and started wearing glasses and playing baseball. the glasses made my eye-hands-feet coordination worse, and had to stop wearing them – he never got used to them and wonders if that’s why he quit playing baseball!

But also just the “hardware” itself can hinder athletic performance, or even make it unsafe. In whatever sport, you know what can happen to glasses frames if you fall, collide with another player, or be struck on the face. Contacts can actually pop out, and dirt or dust can get into your eye and under a lense, irritating your eye in the heat of competition. The “end game” is visibility is very easily compromised by wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses in sports.

Having LASIK surgery in 2009, Thomas Hopkins competed on the USA men’s water polo team at the London 2012 Olympics. Before surgery, he could only read the very top line of the eye chart but after LASIK surgery his vision was better than 20/20. Obviously, corrective lenses in the pool is difficult and dangerous.

At our practice, we have many patients whose active lives and sports ambitions are enhanced with the option of laser vision correction. “A person’s sense of strength and power are enhanced with their new found visual freedom,” says Dr. Schneider. Often times, patients who were not particularly active will phase in to new activities like paddle boarding, power walking, and hiking. Those who are serious athletes will find that their game is taken to a new level in ways they hadn’t imagined!

Your sights might not be set on the 2016 Olympics in Rio, but what would you do with visual freedom?

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