This page gives you instructions for putting drops into your eyes and how to care for your eyes after surgery.

How to put drops into your eyes

  1. Wash your hands.
  2. If eye lids are sticky bathe with cool boiled water.
  3. Shake the bottle.
  4. Tilt your head back.
  5. Gently pull down your lower lid with one finger.
  6. Look up.
  7. Allow the drop to fall inside the lower lid.
  8. Do not let the dropper touch the skin or eye.
Time Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4

A similar table will be completed by the nursing staff.

Advice following eye surgery

  • Please remember that you have had an operation on your eye and you should try to rest as much as possible for the rest of the day.
  • Your eye may stay closed after the operation until the anaesthetic has worn off.
  • You may experience some double vision; this will settle over the afternoon and evening.
  • Your eye may feel itchy and gritty, it may be red and watery with blood-stained tears.
  • Leave the shield/eye pad over your eye until tomorrow morning. You should then start your eye drops as advised. You may also be advised to use the shield overnight for 2 weeks.
  • It is normal to have a little pain and watering of the eye after the operation. Take your normal pain relief, such as paracetamol, if needed. Please follow the dosage instructions in the pack.
  • Your vision may be blurred after the operation. It should gradually clear but you may not notice the full benefit of the operation until you have had your glasses changed.
  • Do not rub your eye.
  • Be careful not to get anything in your eye, such as water, soap, dirt or make up. This means that you must not go swimming for 1 month.
  • Hair washing is allowed but we advise you not to get soapy water in the operated eye for 2 weeks.
  • Do not do anything really strenuous or heavy lifting for 2 weeks while your eye is healing.
  • Do not drive for about a week as you must be able to read a number plate at 20.5 metres. Your insurance company will be able to advise you.
  • Wait until after your follow up appointment before having your eyes tested. You may find it useful to remove the lens from your glasses on the operated side.
  • Use the eye drops as per the instructions at the beginning of this page.
  • If you are currently using eye drops for glaucoma, please continue but start fresh bottles for the operated eye.
  • You will receive a follow up appointment to see either the hospital or a community optician.

Contact information

Contact the Emergency Eye Care Triage Line if:

  • You have severe pain that does not settle after taking pain relief.
  • Your vision gets worse and you have new flashes, floaters or curtain effect.
  • Your eye becomes more red.
  • Your eye becomes sticky.

Emergency Eye Care Triage Line

Tel: 0300 422 3578

Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 1:00pm and 2:00pm to 6:00pm

(The line is closed from 1:00pm to 2:00pm)

After 6:00pm all emergency calls are taken by the switchboard operator and directed to the on-call surgeon.

For routine enquiries please contact:

Eyford Unit

Tel: 0300 422 4002

Monday to Friday, 9:00am and 5:00pm

Printable version of this page

Eye drop instructions and advice following eye surgery GHPI1458_03_24 Department: Ophthalmology Review due: March 2027 PDF, 283.8 KB, 4 pages
Reference number GHPI1458_03_24
Department Ophthalmology
Review due March 2027