LASIK is a very popular option for patients who want to eliminate or greatly reduce the need for prescription glasses or contact lenses. It is an elective procedure, and insurance providers typically do not cover it. However, many vision centers offer financing. This can make the treatment more affordable for many patients. It is important to shop around and compare prices before committing to a particular facility, but also to be aware of additional fees that may not be included in the price quote. For example, some eye centers charge for pre- and post-op visits. Some also require patients to purchase artificial tears, which are not covered by insurance. Also, newer laser devices often cost more than older ones.
The cost of LASIK can be high, but it is important to consider the long-term savings. Most people find that the money saved from not having to buy glasses or contacts pays for the procedure within about 10 years. Also, some LASIK providers offer lifetime touch-ups at no extra cost to patients who need it.
Another way to minimize the costs is to take advantage of employer-sponsored health care plans that allow you to use flexible spending or health savings accounts. These funds can be used to pay for LASIK or other elective procedures. Also, some LASIK surgeons offer a technique called monovision, in which one eye is corrected for distance vision and the other is corrected for near vision. This can allow you to enjoy a glasses-free lifestyle into your 40's and beyond.