General anesthesia is a very weird thing, and I understand why it might be scary. Someone else is in complete control of your consciousness, your mind, your pain levels, your nerves, your organs, your life. Do understand this, though… it's not at all like sleep. The time you are under is just… gone.
It's like a jump cut in a movie… one second you're in the theatre and the anesthesiologist is getting you to count backwards or something… then suddenly you're waking up in recovery and it's all done. The whole process takes a subjective few seconds, and doesn't feel particularly weird at all, other than waking up absolutely calm. The calmness and drowsiness is part of the plan. Quite frankly, even if you are terrified going under… the effect of the anaesthetic means you are physically incapable of being terrified when you wake up, so you know in advance you're going to be chilled out by then.
For something like eye surgery… I would be terrified of trying to deal with that under local or a nerve block, because while they cut the pain and sensation, they do nothing for any anxiety you have about the procedure. You want that general. It's being offered because it's the least dangerous and least stressful way to get the job done. It is less stressful for your emotional health and less stressful for the doctors because they know you will be calm and not remember anything. When I was under general anesthesia for my back surgeries, I didn't even dream. I just time traveled!
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