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How Long Will My Eyes Stay Dilated?


Updated June 02, 2014

Ophthalmologist putting eye drops in woman's eye
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Question: How long should my pupils stay dilated after an eye exam?

Answer: After a dilated eye exam, your pupils will normally remain dilated for about three to four hours. This time varies according to the type of drop the doctor uses and the color of your eyes.

Children are often dilated with stronger drops in order to improve the accuracy of the examination. It is not uncommon for some children to wake up the next morning with dilated pupils. Dark-colored eyes, however, tend to have very short dilation periods, whereas light-colored eyes may stay dilated up to eight hours.

If you feel that your eyes are remaining dilated for an abnormally long period of time, contact your eye doctor.


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