January 27, 2019

Ordinarily, I welcome the opportunity to sneeze. Like my father before me, I love a good, loud, free sneeze.

But these are not normal times. I'm having cataract surgery in 10 days, and the instructions say that, post-surgery, you're not supposed to sneeze. Having researched methods for preventing a sneeze, I understand why sneezing is to be avoided. The nerve structure around your nose also ropes in your eyeballs! You don't want that kind of pressure and vibration on the site of the surgery.

Yesterday I watched this video...



... and this morning — when the urge to sneeze happened — I did it and it worked. I have 10 more days to respond to sneeze urges and to test that method, but I'm very optimistic that this is it. And it's so well explained in that video!

110 comments:

William said...

Thanks for posting. I have seasonal allergies. I guess it would be prudent to postpone surgery until after the pollen season. Winter is bad too because of the indoor dryness. Is summer the ideal time for cataract surgery?

FleetUSA said...

Amazing. thanks for info.

Annie C said...

I wonder if your coloring of the rats will change after your surgery.

Hey Skipper said...

Recently, I got a new piece of professional equipment, not too heavy, about 10 pounds.

When done using it, I'd pick it up, twist to the left about as far as I could, and set it down again.

About two weeks afterward, I had to sneeze, and there was a sudden sharp pain in my back that stopped that sneeze, and all subsequent ones, in their tracks.

A week or so later, the obvious finally became apparent enough for even me to grasp: my motion was jamming my left scapula into the underlying muscles.

Stopped that, and within a week I could sneeze normally again.

All in all, though, your suggestion sounds superior.

tcrosse said...

Gesundheit.

Fritz said...

I don't remember the warnings and I don't remember having any problems sneezing.

Ralph L said...

Wasn't pressing the extended finger horizontally under the nose a standard sneeze pose in old cartoons?

Bob Boyd said...

Stop any sneezes that don't spark joy.

Fritz said...

Annie C said...

I wonder if your coloring of the rats will change after your surgery.


I remember after my first cataract (left side) surgery, the world was a whole lot bluer on the left side.

There's an interesting story about Claude Monet getting cataract surgery, and how it affected his paintings:

The effect of cataracts and cataract surgery on Claude Monet

Jamie said...

What a useful post - sort of niche, yes, but when you need this technique, you may really need it. Thanks!

Humperdink said...

Good to know. This will help next archery season when I'm up a tree.

dreams said...

I remember a teacher in grade school telling us about that method to stop a sneeze though she used the side of her finger like in the video. I've tried it and know it works.

PJ57 said...

Is this surgery going to possibly interrupt your Gehrig-like consecutive days of blogging streak, Professor? Or have you stockpiled enough packaged blogs for Meade to post?

rhhardin said...

I knew that as a kid. But as finger across the area.

MadisonMan said...

I have always pushed under my nose -- along those two ridges, I know they have a name, but I can't recall it -- to suppress sneezes.

Usually, I actually want to sneeze when I feel one coming on and I find that looking at the Sun hastens things along.

stevew said...

Plenty of time left to practice! Good luck.

Qwinn said...

I've always found staring directly into a bright light to work... but that may not be advisable either after cataract surgery, so.

Rob said...

I hesitate to imagine the technique for preventing a fart.

Ann Althouse said...

"Winter is bad too because of the indoor dryness."

The solution to that — which I learned decades ago — is to turn down the thermostat. I used to get a sinus infection every winter, but I've never had one since I learned how to solve the dryness problem. We keep the temperature at 62° during the day and we turn it down another 10 degrees at night. I would do this if only to deal with the dryness problem but there are other reasons to do it. Highly recommended!

FIDO said...

Hmm. Is there anyway to politically twist this to make Althouse seem a bad person? No?


This is useful information and I am glad you shared it.

Fernandistein said...

cataract surgery in 10 days,

It's pretty trivial. Nobody mentioned sneezing to me, probably because -

"Today’s cataract wounds are very secure and coughing or sneezing should cause no problem."

Bob Boyd said...

"I hesitate to imagine the technique for preventing a fart."

Just don't use the same finger for both.

Ann Althouse said...

"Wasn't pressing the extended finger horizontally under the nose a standard sneeze pose in old cartoons?"

Yes, and it was always done after the person had said "Ah ah ah" and it always worked but only until the finger was removed at which point we got a huge "CHOO!"

Tommy Duncan said...

My wife had cataract surgery on both eyes (two weeks apart) in November. Her recovery time was very short. She opted for corrective lens implants, which she loves. Previously she was near sighted with correction on the upper portion of her bifocals. With the corrective lens implants she now has her eyeglass correction on the lower portion of her bifocals and can get by with just "cheaters".

Clark said...

I have been doing this (the horizontal finger method) for many years in those cases where I want to stop the sneeze. As long as I do it soon enough, it always works. There is a point of no return about a half second before the sneeze takes off.

Clark said...

"only until the finger is removed . . ." Ah yes! You have to hold it a few seconds longer than you might think until the urge really goes away.

Ann Althouse said...

"Today’s cataract wounds are very secure and coughing or sneezing should cause no problem."

Yes, I saw that in my research, but I was given written instructions from my doctor and it says not to sneeze and I intend to follow the instructions.

I'm also told not to vomit, not to bend over, not to lift anything heavy, and to stay out of wind and dust. I'm going to do all of that.

I have only vomited twice in my entire adult life. Once, in college, as a result of eating apple pancakes and sausage in the dorm cafeteria, and once a few years ago when I woke up with severe vertigo. I've had less severe vertigo on and off since then, but it only made me vomit the first (and worst) time.

Anyway, I thought you'd like to know about my history of not vomiting.

Ann Althouse said...

"should cause no problem" sounds like an expression of probability, not an assurance that it is no problem at all.

gilbar said...

Our Professor said...
We keep the temperature at 62° during the day and we turn it down another 10 degrees at night.

don't you have problems with your pipe freezing?
I suppose your house is super well insulated, so probably not.
I wonder if you will this Wednesday

Ann Althouse said...

"Is this surgery going to possibly interrupt your Gehrig-like consecutive days of blogging streak, Professor?"

No, not unless something extremely unlucky happens. I've had medical things before in the 15-year streak. I had a colonoscopy and I've had surgery on my foot and I've had some dental work that involved sedation. These things don't put you out for the whole day! The most difficult days to include blogging have been when I wanted to get on the road very early. You might remember the day a couple years ago when we went out west. One day I didn't do morning blogging when we were seeing Arches National Park. I got a huge amount of traffic that day. More than when I actually put up posts, and there were a lot of comments where people were worried that something had happened. So I don't really like to do that.

"Or have you stockpiled enough packaged blogs for Meade to post?"

I have never put up posts that are pre-written. I always publish as soon as I get them written. Years ago, I used to occasionally schedule a post to go up a few hours later, only because I thought there were too many posts in a row and thought they should be spaced out over the day a bit. Even that, I did rarely. But the last time I did that, the blog malfunctioned, and I have been afraid ever to do that again.

It's never the case that Meade takes over for me and pretends to be me. It is possible that if I were too impaired visually, I might ask him to do things I can't do, but I've been working with visual impairment for a long time. It's actually quite hard for me to read, and I don't know why I still read for many hours a day. I expect to be insanely elated by how easy it will be to read in a couple weeks!

Ann Althouse said...

"I have never put up posts that are pre-written."

By that I mean that I've never stockpiled things to cover days when I'm not actually active. I want everything to be new and I can't resist hitting the publish button, which I do ever before I proofread, so I have to edit a published post to fix typos and other errors. I have occasionally, but not recently set a post to go up a few hours later, just to undo what seems like a logjam. But I don't do that anymore, because I don't trust the software.

Ann Althouse said...

"which I do ever before I proofread"

See what I mean?

Ironclad said...

As someone who has had both lens replaced for cataracts - unless you are having some special surgery and not just the regular quick replacement type - the only warning I got was not to go to gym for a week and to remember the drops afterward. Other than a quick trip to Walmart after the 2nd lens to buy a few pair of cheater glasses so I could read until I got my final prescription glasses - that was it. And wear a clear pirate patch for 24 hours and when sleeping - that was it.

I hope your surgery goes well - it took a minute but getting you prepped takes around 45 min. For something with so much effect - it was so simple.

Ralph L said...

My father once dated a widow who kept her thermostat in the high 50's all year long--while wearing sleeveless blouses.

Molly said...

(eaglebeak)

Good luck with the surgery! Hope all goes very well.

Fritz said...

It shouldn't interrupt "the streak". The operation itself takes about 15 minutes. Assuming it's in the morning (and most of them are), she should be out of surgery center, and looking for food by noon. They recommend not making "important decisions" the day of the surgery (like signing contracts and such) because of residual effects of the "don't give a damn" juice that's part of the anesthesia, but I didn't notice it, and more importantly, neither did my wife. Other than having to wear a patch and an eye shield overnight, it shouldn't keep her away from the keyboard.

I look forward to your take on the operation.

EDH said...

Even if you cannot suppress the sneeze, I've found that you can mitigate any resultant trauma by regulating the velocity of the air expulsion using your inner bent elbow (preferable with a good amount of clothing creating a pillow effect).

Kind of like a trumpet mute, you only let some of the air out rather than the "loud, free sneeze".

I actually prefer that to preventing a sneeze.

Christopher said...

Thanks for that video and hey, best wishes for the surgery!

Bay Area Guy said...

I hope the surgery goes well and I wish you good health.

MadisonMan said...

I thought you'd like to know about my history of not vomiting

Have you ever had Apple/Sausage pancakes since event #1? My son once threw up in a spectacular fashion (meaning it required a spectacular amount of cleaning) after eating a whole bunch of chocolate ice cream. He's never eaten chocolate ice cream since -- his choice.

Anyway, your streak is impressive. My daughter is on a similar streak. Hasn't thrown up since she was a toddler. I had migraines into my 40s, and they always always ended with vomiting. In fact vomiting was a true relief!

Ralph L said...

In 1980, my grandmother spent the night in the hospital and wore a patch for several days after a lens replacement. It was outpatient surgery 5 years later when she was 87.

Temujin said...

I was wondering what the eye surgery in February was. Good luck on that. I'm sure you're going to be very elated by clear sight again. And we look forward to your posts that day and on through the years. Gehrig-like indeed. You'll be good for another 20 years of blogging. (yikes!)

EDH said...

What about coughing?

One night before an oral argument, I had a headache. I planned to take an aspirin (which I rarely use) and go to bed early.

Instead, the pill got stuck in my wind pipe. I choked and coughed violently for over an hour, turning my eyes completely red with busted blood vessels and I couldn't get to sleep. And I still had a headache.

Ralph L said...

I haven't vomited since 1978, but my brother did need to give me a Heimlich 20 years ago. I haven't had even a little lamb since, but he had a daughter, Mary, soon after.

alanc709 said...

Ralph L said...
Wasn't pressing the extended finger horizontally under the nose a standard sneeze pose in old cartoons? Yes, it was

etbass said...

Never got any warnings before my cataract surgery over ten years ago. Everything went smoothly, including the recovery. Had one of the lenses laser blasted a year ago to remove crud that had accumulated and now both are still functioning normally. Still amazed at how good my distant vision is after a lifetime of being near sighted. Reading glasses is a minor irritation, mainly finding them when mis-placed. Use drug store reading glasses. When I break a pair by sitting on them, just go buy a new pair.

tim maguire said...

Years ago my wife had a pituitary tumor removed through her nose and she wasn't allowed to sneeze for 5 days. It sounded like an impossible demand, but she made it.

SayAahh said...

Can sneeze, even vigorously, safely by using a wide open mouth.

FullMoon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Abdul Abulbul Amir said...

I had cataract surgery about 15 years ago. A great outcome. Wish I had done it sooner.

Jersey Fled said...

Like you, I enjoy a good, loud, free sneeze. Mostly I do it because it annoys my wife.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Excellent video and good information.

I often have sneezing attacks that irritate my husband. Uncontrollable sneezing 5 or more times in a row. It is quite embarrassing if out in public. I'll try this method the next time.

Not looking forward to it, but probably will need to have the cataract surgery in the near future too. A friend just had his and he relieved a lot of my anxiety about the procedure. My fear was to be able to SEE the instruments or the doctor doing the operation. He said that he was conscious and didn't even know it had happened until it was all over. Whew..relieved.

Mike said...

This technique works most the time. I also have the verified cure for hiccups if you’re ever afflicted by that gnome.

Mary Beth said...

I have always pushed under my nose -- along those two ridges, I know they have a name, but I can't recall it -- to suppress sneezes.

Philtrum.

Bob Boyd said...

"I also have the verified cure for hiccups if you’re ever afflicted by that gnome."

What is it?

Inga...Allie Oop said...

I didn’t sneeze once during the recovery period for cataract surgery on either eye. Don’t worry about sneezing. The surgeon told me the only complication he had in a patient was from infection by toxoplasmosis when the lady cleaned her cat box.

mockturtle said...

Great information! Thank you. My ophthalmologist said I would eventually have to have this procedure but my cataracts haven't reached that stage yet. When my allergies are acting up I can sneeze fifty or more times consecutively. I'll have my hand[s] full.

Re vomiting: A college friend once asked me what 'nausea' feels like---!!!---and I told her it's what you feel just before you throw up. She swore she had never in her 20 years, vomited. I found it hard to believe but it could be true.

Fritz said...

Not looking forward to it, but probably will need to have the cataract surgery in the near future too. A friend just had his and he relieved a lot of my anxiety about the procedure. My fear was to be able to SEE the instruments or the doctor doing the operation. He said that he was conscious and didn't even know it had happened until it was all over. Whew..relieved.

Shouldn't happen. And did I tell you about the "don't give a damn" juice?

My second cataract surgery went slightly awry, and I needed a vitrectomy the next day (They take out all the eyeball jelly). The Dr. warned me ahead of time that they would probably wake me up during the surgery, and communicate with me. They did, and it was very odd, but the "don't give a damn juice" works very well. I was able to hold a semi-rationale conversation with three different probes stuck in the eye (you don't see any of this).

Inga...Allie Oop said...

You don’t see anything but a bright light. They paralyze the optic nerve with drops.

richardsson said...

I had cataract surgery 10 years ago. I don't recall anything about sneezing but I had mine done one month apart in the middle of summer in L.A. I opted for distance vision and had an amazing result. I'm now 20/15. I wear +2.50 readers and +4.00 readers on occasion instead of a using a magnifying glass.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

HOLDING BACK A SNEEZE MIGHT JUST KILL YOU, DOCTORS WARN AS MAN RUPTURES THROAT

All caps, not mine.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

And did I tell you about the "don't give a damn" juice?

Tell me more!! Seriously. That is what I want when the operation will eventually happen.

Losing eyesight has always been a fear/phobia of mine ever since I almost lost an eye when I was a young child (8 yrs old) due to doing the stupid things that kids do. I spent a month in a hospital heavily sedated to keep my eyes as still as possible to stop the hemorrhaging. Then had to wear an eye patch for quite some time after being released. That eye never actually completely recovered. I'm hoping that a cataract surgery would help. nervous:-(

I take heart in everyone else's success stories and wish Althouse all the best with a speedy recovery.

Inga...Allie Oop said...

“Is it a problem if I sneeze or cough during or soon after cataract surgery?

FEB 21, 2014

Question:
What if I sneeze or cough during or soon after cataract surgery? Can this cause any problems?


Answer:
Today’s cataract wounds are very secure and coughing or sneezing should cause no problem.


Answered By: Jeffrey Whitman MD OCS

https://www.aao.org/eye-health/ask-ophthalmologist-q/risks-of-sneezing-coughing-after-cataract-surgery

MayBee said...

I think Althouse needs to go to Japan.

Ann Althouse said...

“I remember after my first cataract (left side) surgery, the world was a whole lot bluer on the left side.”

I’m currently seeing brighter red in my worse eye, so I will predict that blue will become brighter for me. I know I keep choosing blue and green for the drawings, and I suspect the colors look much more brilliant to you than to me.

I expect white to be much brighter and I suspect I’m using white in a weird way I don’t understand.

Yancey Ward said...

My mother was very pleased with her results (she had the procedures 5 years ago)- she had lens replacements in both eyes done about a month apart. I don't remember any instructions about sneezing, though.

Earnest Prole said...

Since I was young I've used a similar horizontal-finger technique but pushing up and in firmly at a 45 degree angle where the cartilage of the nose connects above the lips.

iowan2 said...

Sneezes! Something we are all experts on. Always a good topic to include the masses. I like your attitude about following the Dr's orders, in spite of contradictory findings in your self education and research. Dad explained to us kids that research is required, and you can never have too much. Reminded us not forget to research the expert we are going to use, to gain trust in them. In the end the most efficient use of our limited assets is to hire people that are experts in their fields while you concentrate on the field you are an expert in.

What I know about sneezes, is that it is the most full filling physical feeling in the world you can experience...with you clothes on.

Ingachuck'stoothlessARM said...

will you be sporting the new iPatch?

gadfly said...

Apparently, not all opthamologists caution against sneezing after cataract surgery.

Cataract surgery today is a highly sophisticated and reliable procedure that can be safely performed by an ophthalmologist in roughly fifteen minutes. Its success rate? About 95 percent. No procedure is risk-free, but this is a procedure that has staggering odds of success and has the power to restore your vision and improve your quality of life. Of course, as with most surgical procedures, patients have to take it easy for a week or two following the operation and they should be mindful about anything coming into contact with their eyes. It is a straightforward procedure with a relatively quick recovery time.

Surgery is performed using whoopee juice for curing patient nervousness, local anesthesia eliminates pain in the eye and they strap your head down. Listening to the chatter among the operating room personnel makes you think that they are not paying attention to the task at hand.

I am told that cataract surgery is the most common surgery performed - you get old, so when your natural lens gets cloudy and hardens, it is simply replaced with an artificial one is that often restores vision to 20-20.

Darrell said...

What about sneezes with a short fuse?
Often, I have less than a 1/10 of a second to react.

cubanbob said...

Reading the comments on this thread leads me to the conclusion that all of the commenters ( myself included) and perhaps most of the readers are alter kakers.

Krumhorn said...

Like Mockturtle, I get on a sneezing/cursing jag that won’t stop. I’ll certainly try this...but I’m doubtful.

Good luck, Ann! The thought of someone digging around on my eyeball makes me squirm like a worm on the sidewalk.

- Krumhorn

rhhardin said...

Speak roughly to your little boy,
And beat him when he sneezes:
He only does it to annoy,
Because he knows it teases.

tcrosse said...

Our son's Thai mother-in-law announced that she had Cadillacs. Huh? One in each eye.
Oh.

mockturtle said...

Ann, I pray your procedure and recovery go well. My mother and sister were very happy with the results.

Black Bellamy said...

When I was a little boy I read a mystery novel for kids, the protagonist was hiding in a closet trying to listen in on some bad guys when he was overcome with the need to sneeze. Since, the book explained, he knew that it was impossible to sneeze without closing ones eyes, he held them open and the sneeze went away. So the next time I had to sneeze, I used both hands to pry my eyelids open and that was that. 100% successful all my life.

Todd Galle said...

I too suffer from sneezing fits, to the extent that my family will expect me to remove myself to the basement or garage. If I remember right my record is 75 consecutive. It can be exhausting for all concerned. I also think it is somewhat hereditable, as my maternal side is rife with similar situations, although I think I took the crown after the last funeral. I wish I could figure out what the trigger is, but it happens in so many locations, weather conditions, etc. that I'm at a loss.

Kevin said...

Finally got to try this today. 100% suppressed sneeze. Held. Waited. Waited. Waited. Waited. Waited. Waited. Took finger off - sneezed.

So I guess it works if there is something you absolutely can't sneeze in, but you have the leeway to sneeze as soon as you take your finger away. The massage scenario she mentions in the video is interesting, however, isn't the whole point of massage using your hands? You'd basically be using the finger to buy yourself enough time to turn away/get away.

Given my (admittedly limited) experiment, it doesn't sound like it would help with post-surgery, because you'd never be able hold it long enough. Maybe it would buy you time to get into some position to soften it somehow.

traditionalguy said...

Free not. Cataract surgery is the easiest and least dangerous there is. Sneeze all you want.

traditionalguy said...

That’s FEAR not. All you have to fear is Auto-correct.

Browndog said...

Plug your nose when you feel a sneeze coming. Taught that as a kid when going to Mass. Works every time.

Best to let her fly, in my opinion, unless in a quiet public setting. Sneezes happen for a reason.

Browndog said...

BTW- If you wait too long, and are sucking air for the sneeze, you'll blow your ear drums out-

Well, not exactly, but it feels like it.

Kathryn51 said...

If I recall correctly, I read about this trick over 40 years ago - I believe it was in Glamour magazine of all things. I always had some form of mild hay fever and the occasional sneezing came with it. It was a lifesaver in law school and afterwards in meetings. It doesn't work for major sneezing episodes - after all, there is a reason the body needs to sneeze when you are really sick.

And the cure for hiccups is a 1/2 tsp of pure sugar. I have no idea why it works, but it does - at least for me and my family.

Although the same age as Althouse, I haven't received the dreaded cataract surgery edict yet, but my eye doctor says it is only a matter of time (lots of micro cataracts showing up, apparently). I'm looking forward to reading Althouse's description of her experience. Even better would be a 5 minute video - I miss the blogginghead debates.

Big Mike said...

Good luck with the surgery, Professor. I recommend laser incisions, even though Medicare doesn’t cover them (CMS classifies lazer incisions as “experimental”). Things can go wrong, and my second eye surgery had to be postponed for five weeks because of slow healing with the first eye (the second went smoothly, no problem). Make sure you have very dark sunglasses or a cheap eye patch because you may be photophobic for a couple days.

tim in vermont said...

And the cure for hiccups is a 1/2 tsp of pure sugar.

You have to swallow it while it is still grainy.

320Busdriver said...

Is there a remedy to prevent oneself from vomiting, just because I am watching Kamala Harris announce her candidacy, so it’s needed.

320Busdriver said...

Oh boy, she’s gonna spend a lot. Enjoy your Medicare for all peeps! You’re gonna luv it..

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Speaking of sneezing

Migrant with flesh-eating bacteria detained at US border

Great news for Pelosi.

Crimso said...

"Anyway, I thought you'd like to know about my history of not vomiting."

You might end up needing an "Althouse is like Seinfeld" tag.

tim in vermont said...

Blogger 320Busdriver said...
Oh boy, she’s gonna spend a lot. Enjoy your Medicare for all peeps! You’re gonna luv it..


Math is oppression.

Jay Elink said...

The Japanese word for "sneeze" is ...kushami.

Say it out loud a few times and you'll see why.

Kathryn51 said...

tim in vermont said...
And the cure for hiccups is a 1/2 tsp of pure sugar.

You have to swallow it while it is still grainy.


Agreed - but I have no idea why it works. Never understood why the sneeze trick worked until day - something to do with acupuncture. :-)


Ken B said...

This is another hardin vindication thread in disguise. As others have noted, this is a well known and common way to try to avert a sneeze. But Althouse peddles the idea it’s “acupuncture”. Acupuncture is pseudoscience, like other “alternative medicine.” Alternative medicine that actually works is called medicine.

BUMBLE BEE said...

tcrosse... Some Thais have Cadillacs others have Rincolns.
Captain Billy's Whiz Bang?

FullMoon said...

This is another hardin vindication thread in disguise. As others have noted, this is a well known and common way to try to avert a sneeze. But Althouse peddles the idea it’s “acupuncture”. Acupuncture is pseudoscience, like other “alternative medicine.

Well, just like medicalmarijuana pain relief anecdotes, I have an acupunture one.

Elderly relative had droopy neck. Had to wear a brace to keep head upright.
Dr.said operation was only cure.
You can guess what happened next.

And that sneeze thing is not acupuncture, no puncture involved.

Leora said...

Best of luck. I'm looking forward to the surgery posts.

Ralph L said...

She plans to live-blog it.

Ralph L said...

You can guess what happened next.

A stockade of pins around her neck?

Joanne Jacobs said...

It's like an old detergent commercial: The whites are whiter and the brights are brighter!

FullMoon said...


A stockade of pins around her neck?

No, didn't work.

FullMoon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mark Daniels said...

Last week, my brother-in-law sneezed. I thought nothing of it, but he told me, "Excuse me." Then he told me, "I hate to sneeze." I'd never thought about sneezing as something one either hates or loves, just something that your body does.

But I can understand why, after cataract surgery, sneezing isn't a good idea.

Best wishes for your surgery...and on avoiding sneezes.

(By the way, while I was typing this comment, I felt a sneeze coming on. [Maybe the result of reading your post?] So I tried the little technique recommended here and it suppressed the sneeze. It didn't, though, prevent what always happens to me after a sneeze: the need to blow my nose.)

ceowens said...

Without having read most of the comments, I find that using my fingernail to poke that spot with enough pressure to cause slight discomfort works best for me.

By the way, when you were a kid, did you close your eyes and tilt your head up towards the summer sun to induce a sneeze?

Unknown said...

Good luck with your cataract surgery! I had mine 6 1/2 years ago. There was no discomfort whatsoever.

I wanted to go to a really famous ophthalmologist, but neither Rand Paul nor Bashar al-Assad were taking patients. :)

Bob R said...

I'l try the sneeze technique. Good luck with the surgery. When my mother had hers done, she came back home and realized how dirty her kitchen was. (It wasn't really all that dirty, but, you know, Mom.) Hope you have no surprises.

Mike said...

And the cure for hiccups is a 1/2 tsp of pure sugar.

This isn't my method, which works 100% of the time.

Pettifogger said...

I'll be trying this technique. I tend to sneeze often and loudly. My sneezes make the glass-breakage alarm beep, which keeps us from setting the alarm when we are home. And I catch no end of grief for my sneezing from she-who-must-be-obeyed.

Known Unknown said...

"My father once dated a widow who kept her thermostat in the high 50's all year long--while wearing sleeveless blouses."

Was that because she wanted to show off her nipples?

Known Unknown said...

I've had cataract surgery -- and it was a breeze. 15 minutes. You're back to normal the next day. You'll do great.