How Old Do You Need to Be for LASIK?

Last updated on June 6th, 2017 at 05:44 pm

The short answer: You have to be at least 18 years of age to have LASIK surgery. And often it’s better to wait longer. Why? Primarily, the factor there’s a minimum age requirement for LASIK is to increase the likelihood that your eyes are stable and your refractive mistake — the quantity of nearsightedness, farsightedness and/or astigmatism you have — is unlikely to get worse after you have your LASIK surgery.

How Old Do You Have to Be to Get LASIK Surgery?

In particular, the majority of people who are interested in LASIK are nearsighted, and myopia tends to worsen throughout childhood as well as into early the adult years. It’s best for you to have annual eye tests for at least two years prior to LASIK surgery and for your spectacles prescription to be stable (less than +/ -0.50 diopter modification) for a minimum of one year before proceeding with surgery.

If your myopia does intensify after LASIK surgery, a follow-up procedure called a LASIK improvement typically can be performed to restore clear vision. But making sure your refractive error is stable before your main LASIK surgery is preferable.


How Old Do You Need to Be for LASIK?

When is Someone Too Young or Too Old to Have LASIK?

Age marks lots of turning points: driving, voting, working and retiring. But there’s no set age for LASIK. Many service providers won’t perform LASIK on those under 18 because eyes have the tendency to keep becoming early adulthood. But laser eye surgery has been carried out on children (with severe vision problems) and octogenarians alike.

These are outliers to many cases. The most typical age for LASIK, in reality, falls in between the ages of 20 and 40.

LASIK Age Defined

LASIK is FDA-approved for those 18 and older. Most suppliers encourage young adults to wait till their mid-20s because, till this time, a person’s prescription may be still changing. Having a steady prescription for a minimum of two years is frequently required as evidence prior to anyone, young or old, is deemed a good LASIK prospect.

From the point of steady prescription on, the majority of adults simultaneously grow their savings, begin taking a trip for work and enjoyment, and maybe develop an irritation or fatigue with contacts and eye glasses. This produces the popular duration during which the majority of people have LASIK.

Around the age of 40, an individual’s eyes begin to change once again. Soon thereafter, many individuals begin to need reading glasses due to a condition known as presbyopia. LASIK does not correct presbyopia, but some individuals with the condition choose to have monovision. Monovision is a laser eye surgery that leaves one eye corrected for near vision and the other eye remedied for distance vision.

Also read: Teens and Contact Lenses: How Old Do You Have to Be to Get Contacts

At age 60, the eyes start to alter once again. This is when risk of cataracts increases. Some adults get to age 70 or 80 with no cataracts and have otherwise healthy eyes. In spite of being outside the typical LASIK age spectrum, these individuals can be excellent prospects for laser eye surgery. It’s possible that a 70-year-old without cataracts or other eye diseases is actually a much better prospect than a 30-year-old with very dry eyes and diabetes.

Age definitely affects one’s LASIK candidateship, but it by no means draws an outright boundary. If you are in good health, have a stable prescription and are considering LASIK, ask a laser vision correction provider to evaluate your candidateship.

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Comments: 1
  1. Todd Slater

    I would add, but this is simply an individual view, I would not even suggest it for someone of 18 or early 20s as my own vision scrubby every year. You can’t continue having top up LASIK so if you have it too young, then your eyes can still alter as they would have done anyway but it will end up being required to revert to a low strength of glasses in time (my view only so you may like to research).
    Essentially we get bad vision through weak muscles, bad practices and these continue, LASIK or no LASIK. It would be much better to wait unbtil your distance vision has actually plateaued in later years IMHO prior to contemplating such an important undoable surgery.

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