When considering LASIK eye surgery, one of the most common questions we are asked about is the minimum age requirement. At Brinton Vision, we prioritize the eye health, safety, and visual acuity of our patients above all. It’s essential to understand that age plays a crucial role in determining LASIK candidacy as it relates to the stability of one’s vision. In this article, we’ll explore the age considerations for LASIK and how Brinton Vision approaches this important aspect of patient care.

How old do you have to be to get LASIK?

The United States Food and Drug Administration has set the minimum age to undergo LASIK surgery at 18 years old. However, it’s important to understand that the emphasis is on the stability of one’s vision rather than age itself.

The process of evaluating candidacy for LASIK extends beyond age. It involves thoroughly examining the patient’s ocular health, including the stability of their prescription. A stable eyeglass prescription for at least a year or two is crucial to ensure that the benefits of LASIK last for a significant time. In rare cases, such as for individuals in the military, law enforcement, or professional athletes, earlier intervention may be considered. However, these are exceptions and not the standard practice. At Brinton Vision, we aim to provide a comprehensive evaluation to determine the best approach for improving your vision, ensuring that every LASIK procedure is customized to each individual’s unique needs and circumstances.

Is there an ideal age to have LASIK?

Some ophthalmologists believe the best age for undergoing LASIK is between 25 and 40 years old. However, Brinton Vision prioritizes each patient’s needs, looking at their vision stability to determine the best time for each individual. Such stability is critical for achieving the best possible outcomes from the procedure and minimizing potential complications. Determining the ideal age for LASIK eye surgery is a crucial part of the consultation process at Brinton Vision.

Patients as young as 18 can receive LASIK if their vision has stabilized and their eyes are healthy. Brinton Vision take prescription stability into account, along with the other information gathered through the Brinton Vision Ocular Analysis — a series of advanced tests to examine eye health and measurements — to determine candidacy.

Opting for LASIK later, such as your late-20s to the end of your 30s is also an option due to the likelihood of prescription stability and because it precedes the typical onset of presbyopia. Presbyopia, a condition that affects your ability to focus on close objects, usually begins in the mid-to-late 40s. Having LASIK before this age can ensure that patients enjoy an extended period of improved vision before age-related changes occur. For patients over 40, custom lens replacement is often a better vision correction procedure for their specific needs. The team of doctors at Brinton Vision will determine the best procedure for you at your BVOA consultation.

The FDA has approved LASIK for individuals 18 and older, and Brinton Vision is excited to provide patients with clear and lens-free vision as soon as their eyes are ready. The combination of a stable prescription and general eye health makes a prime candidate for LASIK surgery.

Seeing Clearly with Brinton Vision: Navigating the Best Time for LASIK

Deciding to improve your vision with LASIK refractive surgery is a significant step towards a life less dependent on glasses or contact lenses. At Brinton Vision, we are committed to guiding you through this journey, ensuring that the timing of your procedure aligns with the optimal conditions for lasting results. Remember, the key to a successful outcome is not just the number of candles on your birthday cake, but the stability of your vision and overall eye health.

If you’re considering LASIK surgery and wondering if now is the right time, we invite you to schedule a consultation with our experienced doctors at Brinton Vision. Our team is dedicated to providing personalized care, assessing your unique vision needs, and determining the best path forward for your eyes. Don’t let uncertainty about your age or prescription stability hold you back from experiencing the world with clearer vision. Reach out to us today, and take the first step towards a brighter, more vivid tomorrow.

Are you ready to take the next step in your visual freedom?

More FAQ’s About How Old Do You Have To Be To Get LASIK

Can teenagers undergo LASIK surgery?

At Brinton Vision, we understand the eagerness of teenagers to explore laser vision correction as a solution for their vision correction needs. However, due to the necessity for ocular maturity and prescription stability, LASIK surgery is generally not recommended for individuals under 18. During adolescence, the human eye undergoes changes that can affect refraction and contribute to refractive errors such as nearsightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia), and astigmatism. Since teenagers’ eyes are still developing, and their prescriptions may change, this could affect the long-term success of the procedure.

Is there an upper age limit for LASIK surgery?

At Brinton Vision, we don’t strictly define an upper age limit for LASIK surgery. Suitability for the procedure is more about your overall eye health, the stability of your vision, and the absence of certain eye conditions rather than age alone. Many patients over 40 can be good candidates, depending on individual assessments.

How soon after my prescription stabilizes can I get LASIK?

Once your prescription has been stable for at least one to two years, Brinton Vision considers you a potential candidate for LASIK. A stable prescription means no significant changes in your corrective lens needs, as determined by a refraction test during your eye examination. This stability indicates that your eyes have reached a point where LASIK results are more likely to be long-lasting, ensuring the effectiveness of your investment in clearer vision.

Do young adults need to wait until their mid-20s for LASIK?

The FDA approves LASIK for individuals 18 and older, and at Brinton Vision, we use prescription stability and ocular maturity as a sign that a patient is ready for LASIK. Optometry and ophthalmology experts agree that waiting ensures the eyes’ tissue has fully matured, minimizing the risks of changes in visual perception.

What factors disqualify someone from getting LASIK?

Factors that may disqualify someone from LASIK at Brinton Vision include unstable vision prescription, inadequate corneal thickness, active eye diseases (e.g., keratoconus), severe dry eye syndrome, pregnancy, and certain systemic health conditions. A comprehensive eye exam is essential to determine LASIK candidacy. In addition, a comprehensive medical history review is essential, as conditions like diabetes, glaucoma, severe dry eyes, or other eye health issues can affect candidacy.

How does LASIK technology ensure safety for younger patients?

Brinton Vision utilizes state-of-the-art LASIK technology, which includes advanced mapping and laser techniques to ensure precise and safe corrections. This technology allows us to tailor the procedure to each patient’s specific eye characteristics, enhancing safety and effectiveness across all ages deemed suitable for LASIK. Advanced laser eye surgery techniques are designed to correct refractive errors with precision, minimizing tissue disruption and promoting quick recovery.

Will undergoing LASIK at the minimum age require touch-ups later in life?

While LASIK performed at or near the minimum age of 18 can provide significant improvements in vision, some individuals may require enhancements or touch-ups later in life, especially if their prescription was not fully stabilized at the time of the initial surgery. Changes in visual acuity due to factors like presbyopia or the development of cataracts may necessitate adjustments or additional procedures. Regular eye exams post-LASIK can help monitor and address any changes in vision.

How does eye maturity impact LASIK outcomes?

Eye maturity plays a crucial role in achieving stable and lasting LASIK outcomes. At Brinton Vision, we emphasize that a mature eye — typically not achieved until 18-20 — is less likely to undergo significant prescription changes, making it an ideal condition for LASIK. The stability of the retina and the absence of significant refractive error changes are crucial for long-lasting outcomes.

Is it better to have LASIK before or after presbyopia sets in?

Undergoing LASIK before presbyopia develops can provide years of clear vision. However, at Brinton Vision, we carefully evaluate each patient’s vision and age to determine the best timing for LASIK. For individuals nearing or experiencing presbyopia, we explore options such as monovision LASIK, Custom Lens Replacement, or other corrective surgeries tailored to their changing visual needs.

What pre-LASIK considerations are important for young adults?

For young adults considering LASIK, Brinton Vision focuses on several key considerations: ensuring vision prescription stability, evaluating overall eye health, and discussing lifestyle and occupational needs. These factors help determine the appropriateness of LASIK and the timing that will provide the most benefit to the patient. An eye examination will assess risks and the potential need for corrective lenses post-surgery, while your ophthalmologist will also evaluate for near-sightedness, far-sightedness, and astigmatism.

How do hormonal changes in young adults affect LASIK candidacy?

Hormonal fluctuations can impact eye health and vision, particularly in young adults. Hormonal changes can lead to fluctuations in visual acuity, thus impacting the timing of laser eye surgery. At Brinton Vision, your eye doctor will assess hormonal stability as part of the LASIK candidacy evaluation, especially for young women, to ensure that any changes do not affect the surgery’s outcome or the long-term stability of the results.

Dr. Jason P. Brinton is an internationally recognized specialist in the field of LASIK and refractive surgery. He is a graduate of Harvard College, earned his medical doctorate from the Harvard Medical School and is board certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology.