Nearsightedness and Self-defense?
This is a discussion on Nearsightedness and Self-defense? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; If you're considering Lasik, make sure you do thorough research. I was considering Lasik before I got contacts, but my eye doc advised against it. ...
January 19th, 2006 10:10 AM
If you're considering Lasik, make sure you do thorough research. I was considering Lasik before I got contacts, but my eye doc advised against it. Because of my young age, my poor vision, and the fact that I stare at a computer all day, he said my eyes will still change after I get the surgery and a few years down the road, I'll need glasses (or contacts) again. So the only benefit of having Lasik now is enjoying a couple glasses-free years, and then I'm back to sticking lenses on my eyeballs again. It wasn't worth it in my case.
So I settle for the disposable contact lenses, and 12 pairs turned out to be half the price of one pair of glasses! I keep my glasses for night-time use, and keep an older pair for backup in my bugout bag.
And if you do decide to get Lasik - don't get the "budget eye job" you see gleefully advertised (unless you want to see weird halos); you really need to spend the extra $ to get the custom eye job tailored for your prescription.
"Americans have the will to resist because you have weapons. If you don't have a gun, freedom of speech has no power." - Yoshimi Ishikawa
January 19th, 2006 10:21 AM
Get in a good Combatives class, teaching transition of force in both directions. Training for body-index shooting could be helpful- practice slowly and carefully with your glasses on, and note what you physically do to make hits. Then. Take the glasses off and try a couple of shots at "the Blob" using the same posture (isosolese, mod Weaver, whatever was working), reevaluate. Try again, ad nauseum.
Basically, build your confidence "handicapped", and get comfortable transitioning to the "gun-as-a-club", knife, empty hand, etc..
January 19th, 2006 12:29 PM
Good points, Betty, but even if your vision changes, and I agree that it will, you may have ten or more years of good vision before correction is needed. Plus, even if/when you need glasses/contacts they won't have to be as strong (thick, heavy, etc.). Hence even if you lost you contact/glasses for whatever reason, you would likely still be "operational".
Originally Posted by Betty
Also, if in 5 - 10 years your eyes need correction, it's likely that it would be possible to get "lasik" adjustments instead of going the glasses/contact route.
Just some things to think about.
January 19th, 2006 01:48 PM
Same thing here--I'm nearsighted with a terrible astigmatism. I wear my glasses every waking moment and am pretty helpless without them. I have no interest in Lasik due to potential complications (I'm a juvenile diabetic), not to mention I'm not a fan of elective surgeries to begin with.
The most important thing I do is always ensure that I buy glasses that fit properly and offer a wide field of vision. I don't want to look like some dweeb from the 50's, but I'll sacrifice style to protect effectiveness any day. When you can see well, you're more aware of your surroundings, and when your glasses fit well, they're less prone to falling off or being knocked off.
I will also wear a neck strap if necessary (haven't had the need outside of strenuous physical activities), so that's something to consider as well. Looks goofy, but life is more important than looks.
Most of all, I check my six and evaluate my surroundings continuously so I have time to think and react if I end up in a dangerous sitution. I don't have 'Principles of Personal Defense' in front of me, but Cooper referenced a quote that went something like this: "A [battlefield] commander may be forgiven for being defeated, but never for being surprised."
Remember that surprise is principle seven--make sure it stays with you and not the bad guy.
SIC SEMPER TYRANNIS
Proud member NRA, GOA, VCDL
January 19th, 2006 02:14 PM
this is a tough one
I have contacts and am severely nearsighted w/out them. Have glasses for the evening. I've been contemplating the corrective surgery (my wife had it and loves it and cannot figure out why I have not done it yet) or trying the 24 hour contacts. I do have extra pairs of last prescription glasses in my vehicles and my bag when I go to work.
The only thing that comes to mind was, I think, the FBI Miami gunfight where the best shot lost his glasses in the auto collision that was the prelude to the gunfight.
Losing glasses during a SD situation scares me. I'd like to get the surgery today, but am waiting for hopefully better technology.
January 19th, 2006 02:24 PM
Wow, thanks everyone! You've given me a lot to think about. I suppose I should clarify the fact that I have every intention of pursuing surgery within the next few years, but would like to come up with some more ideas about what to do in the meantime. Also, it's very possible that I won't be a candidate for surgery with my astigmatism. I can't do it anytime soon because I'm in college right now and funds are pretty limited. I do understand that age will catch up with me eventually and start to reduce the effectiveness of the Lasik correction, but honestly it can't get any worse than it is now unless I go blind. I can't read 12 point type at 12" and sure as heck can't see ANY sights at arms length. It's an effort to even see the gun. Surgery should be able to at least get me to 20/300 or something usable, so I'm not completely helpless without glasses. Right now all I can distinguish beyond arm's length is light and movement.
I'm also looking at getting contacts again now that I don't use the computer quite so much. I wore them for several years in high school and again for a while in the Army, then switched to glasses again since I was always at a computer terminal. Just gotta find some cash and schedule the appointment.
Betty, thank you for the warning about cheapo surgery. Believe me, I won't trust my eyes to just anyone! That's why I didn't let the Army do it, even though they offer free Lasik. I'd rather pay well to have the job done right.
Rob, I'll look into more training. The main problem is that there is absolutely no way for me to effectively identify a target without glasses. I may still be able to use my weapon in a confrontation if the BG knocks me down, if I maintain awareness of his position and he stays close. Then I can just point at the 'blob' and fire. If I lose contact though, that blob is just that, a faceless blob. It could be an innocent bystander and I won't take the chance of firing. Likewise if he's more than five feet away. There's no way for my point shooting to be responsibly accurate and the bullet could go anywhere. Essentially I'm afraid of being a hazard to my surroundings. I could blindly spray and pray, likely scaring the BG off, but I'm responsible for each of those bullets and the damage they will cause. Not a risk I'm willing to take.
QKShooter, good suggestion. I should dig out my backups.
ExSoldier, I've been meaning to get some of those for a while. I'm back in the Reserves now and really should have something effective for a combat zone as well.
Thanks again to everyone for all of your suggestions.
“Freedom is the sure possession of those alone who have the courage to defend it.” ~Pericles of Athens
Primary Carry - Colt Commander .45 in a Brommeland Max-Con V
January 19th, 2006 10:58 PM
<<I'd like to get the surgery today, but am waiting for hopefully better technology.>>
The military is paying for servicemembers to get vision correction surgery left and right. Glasses are bad in combat, contacts are bad in the desert.
I know at least 7 Soldiers who have had it in the last 18 months or so. Every last one is incredibly happy with the result.
To echo Betty, don't go for the bargain basement job. These are your eyes and you get what you pay for.
EDIT: Just saw were you turned down the surgery from the Army. I don't know how long ago that was, but today they are turning out outstanding results... and, at least here at Carson, they use civilian surgeons... and not the cheap guys either, from what I understand.
"I am a Soldier. I fight where I am told, and I win where I fight." GEN George S. Patton, Jr.
January 19th, 2006 11:35 PM
I think you got me confused w/ another poster. I posted about better technology, but my DD214 has a date of 1988. Been a while since I was one of Uncle Sams Misguided Children.
Originally Posted by tanksoldier
I know lasik makes the cornea thinner, which is a concern for anyone severely nearsighted and participates in impact sports. Right now, I am not ready to take the lasik risk. I think there is another surgery that keeps the thickness of the cornea, but it takes more time to heal.
Every year at my eye exam, I always ask about the surgery, but then back off of actually getting it. Maybe someday.
January 20th, 2006 12:34 AM
If fixing your vision isn't possible, perhaps you should invest in as big of a can of OC spray (a good brand, like Fox Labs) as you can carry. If the worst happens and you lose your glasses or can't get to them, just take the "spray and pray" approach with the OC spray.
January 20th, 2006 05:39 AM
Had mine done in 2001. My vision was 20/900. I was so nearsighted, I was unable to see 6 inches in front of me without corrective lenses, and those only brought me to 20/40 or so. Had both eyes done by Lasik at the same time. Terrifying. The doc told me to stare at the little red light, and try not to move my eyes, as it could affect the outcome. He forgot to tell me that when they fold back your lens, the little red light turns into a giant fuzzy orange light.
15 minutes after surgery, my eyes were examined and assessed as 20/35! Two days after surgery, my vision was 20/25, and steadily improved for the next six months. Eventually, I ended up with 20/20 vision. I still wear glasses when driving due to a slight astigmatism(which they can now correct with Lasik), but that's personal choice. I can drive fine without them.
Would I do it again, to correct my astigmatism? Not right now. Would I do it again, to correct a vision deficiency? Absolutely. Best thing I ever did for myself. I wore glasses for 20 years before the surgery. No more fumbling in the dark for glasses, I can swim, I can shoot, the world is a changed place. I've had no trouble with halos, or anything like that. I do have dryer eyes than I used to, so in summer months or when in a lot of heat or A/C, I use eyedrops once a day or so.
Definitely research your doctor. A lot of docs will do it cheaper, but that doesn't mean it's a bargain. Not all doctors are the same. My doctor was Jefferey Turner, of the Turner Eye Institute, in San Leandro, CA. He also has an office in S.F., IIRC. You might be able to get a recommendation from his office for your area, as these guys tend to know each other.
Good luck, if you decide to do it. Feel free to email me with any questions you have. I'll do my best to answer them.
"Water can flow, or it can crash. Be like water, my friend."-Bruce Lee
"Luck, often enough, will save a man if his courage does hold."
January 21st, 2006 09:56 PM
January 21st, 2006 10:38 PM
You got better eyesight than me! :) I have 20/20 corrected, but can't read a newspaper unless it touches my nose.
When I was a Reserve Sheriffs Deputy I wore contacts so I could take a hit. Contacts suck.... PERIOD
I checked on Lasik, but I had a 50/50 chance of improvement with the same chance of losing the ability to correct my current eyesight to 20/20. I chose not to risk losing the 20/20 corrected.
When I was in Aikido I wore some basketball sport glasses that looked stupid but it took a hard hit to move them.
Just realize you vulnerability and go from there. Have backup glasses, always put your glasses in the same spot when you sleep, and learn to shoot at sounds. :)
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