Some prospective questions..

Discussion in 'Join the Army - Regular Officer Recruiting' started by Altaïr, Jan 15, 2011.

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  1. Hi
    Basically I'm a 2 year uni student, 4 year course, and I'm considering joining after I graduate. I'm really just at the stage where I'm reading, and seeing if I am eligible and if its the right choice for me.

    Anyway the real question. I wear glasses, I'm not super blind, I'm within the army's limits, however I know I would be pretty useless without them. After watching documentaries of the armed forces, I really wouldn't fancy wearing them while serving. With this and my own interests considered, I've been thinking about laser eye surgery. Not the crappy cheap stuff, the decent clinics and looking at the types the army allows. I know (at least I think I know) the army has a 1 year medical lay off between surgery and applications, but I don't really know what I would do with this time. Is there anything that is really worthwhile doing, in terms of strengthening my application rather than just bumming around waiting? Also does anyone have any experience of wearing glasses or of having laser eye surgery in the army?

    Hope I haven't too much of a noob question.
  2. Short answer is that I would not recommend it. The army policy on laser eye surgery is a bit vague to say the least and with lots of people applying to join at the moment you might be chancing your luck. I would recommend that you apply and join up (assuming you pass) and then re think it once you are in. There are some genuine post surgery potential infection concerns which remain even after a year after the surgery.
  3. Just think carefully about my following:



    That doesn't bother you at all?

    Hmmm....having had the attentions of doctors for stuff much less sensitive than eyes and thankfully after commissioning (so no bar to enlistment), there can always be risk attached to surgery. My example, 18 months after a surgical procedure, I developed complications - who knows what might happen with eye surgery.

    I know the ads say it's perfectly safe, but they're probably not expecting recipients to go and get thrashed to death at RMAS for a year, just to start their job and then be worked hard thereafter.

    All that above to one side, I was pretty sure it was not allowed in any case, due to the potential risks.

    Best bet, ask your ACIO. Personally I wouldn't worry about having to wear glasses if you meet the eyesight standards.
  4. Thank for the replies guys.
    I had a bit of a look around, and I can't find anything that means the Army wouldn't let me have laser surgery, but I would have to have a 12 month post surgery gap with no complications. I think I would probably have to talk to a recruiter and ask how the Army views entry and then asking for a 12 month lay off for somewhat unnecessary surgery. I would imagine not too favourably. I had an eye test today, got even blinder, I'm only -2.25 away from being able to apply for a dog!

    django_strikes : It doesn't really bother me, I work with lasers in my degree, there are lots of different types, bot just the "and now you die Mr Bond!" scary ones. So long as I know the person who is doing it has done it lots of times successfully before, and the equipement is up to date. Put is this way the place I have in mind does the eye's of plenty of famous people and charges £2000 per eye with unlimited aftercare.
  5. I too have been taught (and forgotten) a thing or two about lasers. I don't have a massive drama with laser eye surgery itself, it is the fact that they remove the epidermis before lasing the lens of your eye and then lay it back over the scarred lens. The epidermis, I am told never fully reattaches, meaning that you are for ever susceptible to infection and in theory it separating completely. While this is fine in most civilian walks of life, a soldier may put himself through a bit more than the average civi.

    I must profess that I am not an eye surgeon and that above is only my understanding of how the process works and the risks attached. Therefore if you are considering it you should do your own research. However if I am substantially correct in my understanding and given the rather vague Army policy on laser eye surgery, then I would not consider getting it done until I was through training and only then if I was in the sort of job in which I would be less likely to be exposed to infection and blast.
  6. There's another thing I don't know about the laser treatment. You state that your eyesight has got worse since your last test. Will the surgery halt this deterioration as well? Or, will you just start from 'perfect' and then get worse with time again?
  7. If i could of had it done before i rmas i would. Three muckers in my platoon have had it done and can't rate it high enough. Yeah of course people are going to say don't risk it blah blah but if they can deal with the pain in the arse that is contacts and glasses good for them.

    On ex i just use the extended wear contacts, had no probs with them so far. What they'll be like in Afghan i do not know, but people manage. Besides when/if you get to rmas you get issue specs that make you look like a proper sex offender, which during Jr term the Csgts take great pleasure in forcing you to wear and then calling you 'spectron'...'speccy twat' etc
  8. Yeah, I think the flap re-opening is really to do with LASIK, which is the banned type, where they cut a flap, LASEK and PRK they use a solution and move it and it heals completely after a short period, which is why US pilots are allowed it.

    Also as Snoreador has pointed out this is all prospective, I need my eyesight to stop getting worse before I could have it done, otherwise it is near pointless.
  9. Yeah, this is one of the things I was worried about, wearing glasses that suit you in Civvy life is annoying, some Army spec massive combat glasses must be terrible. I don't fancy singling myself out for extra punishment either.

    Are you going to Afganistan? If so then good luck, I hope your contacts are the most significant problem you encounter :)
  10. I was wondering about this. I only wear my glasses for watching TV. My uncorrected eyesight is actually spot on what the entry requirements state that vision must be correctable to - does this mean I will be able to just carry on as I do currently, i.e. hardly ever wearing them?