Is Eye Dilation Painful?

Your St. Petersburg Eye Doctor Serving Pinellas County

It’s probably safe to say that not very many people enjoy having their eyes dilated during an eye exam. Still, eye dilation is a necessary part of comprehensive eye exams because it allows Dr. Ryczek to fully assess the health of your eye and not just your vision.

The main thing to understand is that eye dilation is not a painful experience. Though the drops can induce a temporary stinging sensation that can make your eyes water, it is more so briefly uncomfortable rather than painful.

Eye Dilation 101

So why do so many patients dread eye dilation? Well, here a few reasons we can think of that aren’t as bad as they seem.

  1. Dilation requires eye drops to be administered – If you’re a contact lens wearer, eye drops probably aren’t an issue for you, but some patients are intimidated by the mere thought of drops being put in their eyes.
  2. Your vision gets temporarily blurry – If you’ve never needed vision correction, having your eyes dilated can be a strange experience because our drops will cause your vision to temporarily become blurry. Even for patients with their proper corrective solutions, your vision will still be blurry during the dilation period.
  3. You need to plan ahead – When Dr. Ryczek dilates your eyes, it takes about 30 minutes for the drops to work. Once your eyes are dilated, the effects can last for a few hours, which means that you’ll need to organize a driver or plan to wait at our office while your eyesight returns to normal. Though this adds a little extra time to your visit, it’s crucial to performing a full ocular health assessment.

As you can see, while eye dilation is not something everyone enjoys, it’s not a painful experience and the health benefits far outweigh the minor inconveniences.

If you have questions about eye dilation, or if you want to schedule your next eye exam with our experienced eye doctor, call our optometry office in St. Petersburg at 727-327-8855.

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