Author: Dr Val Phua MBBS, MMed (Ophth), FRCOphth, FAMS
Photo by: Apostolos Vamvouras
Freedom from glasses and contact lenses is a dream that many have achieved through procedures like LASIK and ICL surgery. Some occupations have strict health and fitness requirements due to the higher risks involved and greater responsibilities. Achieving 6/6 or 20/20 vision is just part of what is needed to see and function well because other aspects include focusing, aiming and tracking. Here are some roles which require excellent vision in order to excel.
Transitioning into parenthood is a step nothing can truly prepare you completely for. For many, it is arguably the most challenging phase in their life having to adapt to multiple changes at the same time. It is easy to get overwhelmed with the many little things that need to get settled and overlook the need for excellent distance and near vision to not only ensure that the children are safe, but also to enjoy the countless moments of inexpressible joy that comes as well. One of the more frightening yet not uncommon stories involve toddlers putting small objects into their mouths. This ranges from beads, small toys and even batteries. In severe cases, emergency surgery would need to be performed to prevent a disastrous outcome. Similarly, those involved with taking care of elderly folk e.g.preparing their medication also require good vision. Wrong medications and wrong dosing have resulted in some serious health consequences for some.
Pilots and air-traffic controllers
Be it a commercial airline or a military fighter jet, pilots have one of the most stringent criteria for vision requirements and understandably so. At those speeds, a split second can mean the difference between life and death for many! In addition to vision requirements, they also need to have excellent visual fiends. Imagine being able to see clearly straight ahead but having no idea what goes on in your peripheral vision; it can certainly be disastrous. Procedures like LASIK or ICL are often used to avoid the need for glasses or contact lenses. One can only imagine what could happen if a pilot suddenly lost vision due to lost glasses or a dropped contact lens.
Firefighters need to be in great physical shape and have excellent vision to do their job well. They operate in dangerous environments (Fire, smoke, poor lighting and water) which makes the need for good eyesight more critical. Time is of the essence and any mis-steps due to poor vision can cost lives. Many in this line have undergone LASIK or ICL to help them optimise their vision and excel at their work. It is safe to have these procedures done despite the possibility of facing such harsh environments; the flap does not melt nor does the implanted ICL.
The life of a construction worker is tough. Not only do they need to be physically strong, they need good eyesight to operate machinery and build without any accidents. Their job often involves drilling and cutting with a lot of debris flying through the air and it is not uncommon that they come into the emergency room after having some metallic or concrete foreign body hit the eye which can cause a range of eye problems from a corneal abrasion to a penetrating injury of the eye. Protective eyewear is often used to prevent these unwanted and potentially devastating injuries.
Surgeons deal with multiple diseases of the body ranging from excision of tumours, replacement of specific parts (e.g. Joints, heart valve) to even organ transplant. In some cases, they literally hold the life of the patient in their hands. Excellent vision is needed to know precisely where to cut, identify bleeding points and suture where needed. Poor vision in these scenarios lead to poor patient outcomes and can even result in mortality. Some people comment that eye doctors do not undergo laser vision correction themselves and this is a myth as many eye specialists have undergone these types of corrective procedures. This includes myself where I underwent PRK or Epi-lasik many years ago with excellent visual outcomes and a lifetime of convenience.
If you are looking to restore your vision and achieve glasses and contact lens freedom, laser vision correction or ICL surgery may be suitable for you. Book an appointment to see which procedure best suits your visual needs.