Our Lead Technician, Carol Marsh-Urquhart and her very special friend, Corey
Two 11 year old kids – Corey and Alliston – came into the Visionary Eyecare Office in Pembroke Pines… they were selling candy TO BUY THEIR OWN school supplies when our lead tech, Carol Marsh-Urquhart, was in charge. Carol was so touched by their humbleness and exuberant entrepreneurial energy in finding a way to buy their own school supplies that she thought of ANOTHER WAY to help them get their supplies.
She contacted her church – Christ The Rock in Cooper City – and inquired about any program that would help kids in need. Carol was able to get 2 book bags filled with school supplies for the two youngsters. She then called the kids, Corey and Alliston, who were extremely happy to FINALLY have their school supplies!!!
During this encounter, Carol also had noticed that Corey had a very severe and cosmetically troublesome eye turn and thought about ways in which she could help him with his problem – maybe there was a way that she could help him get his eyes properly aligned….
Carol spoke with our Eye Doctor, then connected him with Nova Optometry Pediatric Department for his specialized optometrist eye exam and then connected him with the Lenscrafters OneSight Program so he was able to get a new pair of glasses.
Carol also was able to contact a local Pediatric Ophthalmologist, Dr Bruce Miller, for Corey. After a couple of visits to the Ophthalmologist, surgery is now scheduled to correct Corey’s eye turn. Corey’s mother had absolutely NO IDEA that her son’s eye turn could be resolved – she thought that Corey was just born that way and that nothing could be done about this very cosmetic eye turn problem. She thought that Corey would have to live with his eye turn forever.
Corey and his mother are now eternally thankful to Visionary Eyecare’s lead tech, Carol, for helping her son to be able to live his life without this troublesome eye turn – called strabismus.
Susan Scott is a local artist and patient of Dr Dawn Bearden at Visionary Eyecare(The Indepenedent Doctor of Optometry Next to Lenscrafters) in Pembroke Pines. She had previously always had a problem finding an eye doctor who could address all of her creative and artistic visual needs.
One day she was having problems doing an art project and her friend, Evelyn (who is an artist and a patient of Dr Bearden) recommended that Susan go to see Dr Dawn Bearden.
This is Susan’s story…
While Susan and Evelyn were doing an art project together – Susan had THREE pairs of glasses in front of her and still seemed to be having difficulty seeing what she was doing. None of the glasses seemed to meet her artistic visual needs. She felt that she just could not find an Eye Doctor that could give her a prescription that would allow her to see clearly enough to create her art.
After Susan was recommended to Optometrist, Dr Dawn Bearden, from her friend, Evelyn, she realized that Dr Bearden is ALSO an artist. Evelyn originally met Dr Bearden Evelyn because Evelyn was teaching Dr Bearden how to make stained glass art at her store – Glass By Design. Dr Bearden is also passionate about photography. Dr Bearden started taking pictures around age 12 when she was in middle school, she had minored in Photography in College and also had recently attended the Ft Lauderdale Art Institute for Photography. For as long as she can remember – Dr Bearden has ALWAYS had a camera in her hand. Susan felt a connection with Dr Bearden because she felt that they were both artistic and creative individuals. She felt at ease because she knew that THIS particular Doctor would understand her specific visual needs.
After the eye exam, Susan was very happy with the thoroughness of the eye examination. She FINALLY received a glasses prescription that met ALL of her artistic visual needs and she was impressed that the Doctor answered all of her questions in a very clear manner in which Susan could completely understand.
Susan recently moved to Washington, DC – BUT, she still plans yearly trips to South Florida so she can come to Visionary Eyecare and see Dr Dawn Bearden for her annual eye exam.
Starlene Carter came into Visionary Eyecare (Next to Lenscrafters) in Pembroke Pines in January 2001. She was in the area and decided to stop in to schedule an eye examination for herself the following week. She was not intending to get an eye exam that day – her plans were to spend that day shopping!
Our Office Manager, Carol Marsh, was there that day and convinced Starlene to go ahead and get her eye exam that same day since the office was not busy and the Doctor (Dr Dawn Bearden) would be able to see her right away. Starlene agreed but, was insistent that she would NOT have her pupils dilated that day. Her shopping was waiting and she did not want to “mess up her day” with that “dilation thing”. Carol told her that the Doctor would talk to her during the exam about the importance of dilation. Still Starlene would just not be convinced….
When Starlene met Dr Bearden for the first time – Dr Bearden began to explain and stress the importance of pupillary dilation. Dr Bearden explained that this was Starlene’s first eye exam in our Visionary Eyecare office, there could be a multitude of eye diseases or problems that Starlene may be unaware of (because most eye problems do NOT cause any symptoms like blurry vision, headache, eye pain etc) and that Dr Bearden may NOT be able to detect these issues if Starlene did not allow the Doctor to dilate her pupils. Dr Bearden also explained that Florida laws requires your Optometrist to dilate your pupils on the initial eye exam when you have an eye exam with a new Optometrist. Reluctantly…..VERY reluctantly….Starlene finally agreed.
This simple decision absolutely saved Starlene’s vision.
During the eye exam, all seemed very normal. Starlene had no family history of eye disease, she was able to see 20/20 in each eye with her new glasses prescription, she had NO eye pain, NO headaches, NO discomfort, her eye pressures were normal, her blood pressure was normal, good color vision etc. But, when Dr Dawn Bearden dilated Starlene’s pupils – she saw 2 very LARGE retinal tears (retinal detachments) in Starlene’s right eye that posed a HUGE threat to Starlene’s vision in her right eye. These tears could have eventually caused blindness in her eye had they not been detected during the dilation and then properly treated.
Immediately, Dr Bearden called Dr Jay Levy – who is a local ophthalmologist who specializes in surgery of the retina. Dr Bearden sent Starlene to see Dr Levy – who did surgery on Starlene’s right eye to repair the retinal tears in her right eye.
Starlene is now a loyal patient of Dr Dawn Bearden’s. She is still able to see 20/20 in each eye and has had no further problems from the retinal tears that were surgically repaired by Dr Levy. Each and every year during her routine eye exam with Dr Bearden, you can find Starlene out in the waiting room telling her story to ALL of the other patients in the office. She does a GREAT job in educating people and everyone that she comes in contact with about the importance of yearly eye examinations and the VITALimportance of pupillary dilation.
It saved Starlene’s vision…..and it can do the same for you and for the people in your life who come in for their annual eye exam!
Around 10 million school children in America have vision conditionsthat can negatively affect learning. This can be prevented by taking kids to get their first formal eye exam with an Eye Dr in an Eye Clinic BEFORE they enter school. A child’s first eye test with an Eye Doctor should be done between ages 3 and 4. At Visionary Eyecare in Pembroke Pines, Sunrise (Next to Lenscrafters) and Davie (Next to Pearle Vision) – our Optometrists, Dr Bearden, Dr Tenn and Dr McCulloh, begin to see children at age 4.
Allen Picture Cards
A child does NOT need to be able to verbalize or know their alphabetfor the examinerto perform a comprehensive eye examination.
There are numerous eye charts for children!!
Lea Flip Chart
Allen and Lea charts have pictures or shapes on them that youngsters can identify. The Broken wheel chartallows the child to tell the examiner which wheel on the car is “broken” . The Tumbling E chart (also known as the illiterate chart) allows a child to just POINT in the direction that the “legs of the E” are pointing in.
Allen Picture Eye Chart
Often our children can not express to us when they are having problems with their vision. They may not even realize that they are experiencing vision problems. Sometimes children will try to compensate for vision issues by closing one eye, rubbing their eyes excessively, squinting, skipping over words or loose their place when they are reading.
Kids may start having difficulty in school due to an “unknown” reason. A recent study indicated that up to 60 percent of youngsters that have been identified as “problem learners” or “learning disorder” actually suffer from an undetected visual condition.
Tumbling E Eye Chart
A vision problem is not suspected in many children because they were able to pass the school vision screening or the pediatrician vision screening. These children may still have visual issues but, they were not detected on the screening. Only a comprehensive eye exam, done by an Eye Doctor (Optometrist or Ophthalmologist) will be able to detect subtle vision problems.
Broken Wheel Eye Test
Vision issues need to be detected and corrected before age 7 to prevent lifelong problems such as lazy eye (amblyopia), eye turn (strabismus), learning disabilities and behavior problems.
Do you need help remembering when to discard your disposable contact lenses or when to see your eye doctor for your yearly eye exam? Well you can go to www.AcuMinder.comand register for this FREE service to get reminders sent to you via Email, text message or a computer desktop widget to help you remember. They even have a new Facebook application that will help you remember!
Getting an annual eye exam is very important in maintaining the health of your eyes as well as keeping your vision as clear and crisp as possible. Also it is vital to discard your contact lenses every 2 weeks or when your doctor recommends the lenses to be discarded.
Contact lenses act like little sponges that can soak up bacteria, fungus, viral particles, mucus, debris, smoke and other environmental agents. Even if you clean your contacts every night – these agents do build up on your contact lenses each and every day. Cleaning them nightly often does not get rid of 100% of these irritants. These irritants build up – day in and day out….so its important to discard the lenses and put in a new pair – even if your eyes feel “fine”.
When contact lenses are not discarded on schedule – patients can come in with distortions on the front of their eye (on their cornea) or develop allergies to the contacts. Most of the time, patients are not yet aware that these issues are even happening until its too late. Some of these issues can lead to lifelong problems with wearing contacts.
Ask Dr Bearden, Dr Tenn or Dr McCulloh in our Pembroke Pines or Sunrise (Sawgrass Mall) office for a free Acuminder.com information card. We will fill it in with your most recent exam date, the brand of contacts that you are currently using, your correct discard schedule, your eye doctor’s name and telephone number. You will need this information when you register at www.Acuminder.com
This is a story of how an eye exam can actually change the course of a child’s life.
Jennifer is a loving mother of an 5 year old little boy. Her son is absolutely adorable and a really good child yet, in school he was being labeled a “difficult / problem child” and a “disturbance in the classroom”. He often did not want to pay attention in school, frequently “acted out” and even threw his books. He just did not seem to be interested in reading or learning – at ALL.
As a mother, she knew that this behavior in school seemed a bit odd and out of character for the sweet, loving boy that she knew her son to be at home. The comments from the school really alarmed Jennifer that something was definitely wrong.
Her young son had passed his Pediatrician’s vision screening, AS WELL AS the school vision screening but, acting on motherly instinct – she ignored the comments that “his vision is fine” and took him to see the Optometrist, Dr Dawn Bearden, for a routine eye exam. Eye Doctor, Dr Bearden, manages the Visionary Eyecare (Independent Doctor of Optometry) offices next to Lenscrafters in Pembroke Pinesand Sunrise and also next to Pearle Vision in Davie.
During the routine eye examination – Dr Bearden discovered that Jennifer’s son was able to read the eye chart with just a little bit of blur but, he needed eyeglasses to correct the strain that he was feeling while reading. Once the strain was relieved from wearing the glasses full time…the child suddenly became more attentive in school and began reading ALL THE TIME.
Actually, he loved reading SO MUCH that he won an award from his kindergarten teacher for reading!! He even received an award from the school’s Principal for “Most Improved Reader”…he actually read 26 books within 30 days. WOW!!
Jennifer is now a HUGE advocate to have children get eye exams from an eye doctor and for parents NOT to be lulled into complacency by their child passing a vision screening. Her child could have gone through life in the classroom being labeled a “problem” and a “disturbance” simply because he could not see well and his eyes were being strained in school.
Jennifer states the following in her video:
No matter how well a parent THINKS their child sees well or if a child is labeled a “problem” in the classroom because he does not pay attention…it may just be because he can’t see well.
The eye exam has made a HUGE difference and my son has excelled, he is doing wonderful and his behavior is like “night and day”!
“I’m a big ADVOCATE…get your child checked by a (eye care) professional!!”
A Visual Representation of the Visionary Eyecare Blog
Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words!!
And sometimes that picture is made from a thousand words…..
Here are some visual representations of the Visionary Eyecare Blog from Wordle.
It visibly shows that our blog talks about the Eye, an Optometrist, an Eye Exam, Pembroke Pines, Sunrise, Eye Dr, Contacts, Dr Dawn Bearden, Dr Emily McCulluh, Dr Anna-Kay Tenn, Lenscrafters, an Eye Doctor, Vision, Eye Care, Eye Health and more….
Just by scanning one of these images – a reader can immediately get a feel for what the Visionary Eyecare Blog is all about!!
Ask Dr Dawn Bearden… or any Eye Doctor or Staff member at Visionary Eyecare in Pembroke Pines or Sunrise….and they will always tell you that having an annual eye exam is very important. But why?!?!???
Is it because your eyeglasses prescription changes every year and you need to get new glasses?!?!??! Well, often the prescription can change from year to year BUT, there are MORE IMPORTANT reasons to have your eyes checked annually.
Martha Stewart recently interviewed Optometrist, Dr Rhonda Robinson, about annual eye examinations. Dr. Robinson explained that the reasons to have an annual eye exam change as a person goes through each life stage.
We are in a new age where the visual demands of children and teens are being stressed in completely different ways – iPods, cell phones, computers, Blackberries, MySpace & Facebook, texting….the list is endless.
Even SMALL changes in a prescription can make a HUGE difference in visual comfort.
Adults need to have a yearly eye exam to ensure good eye and systemic health. The majority of eye medical issues DO NOT cause any visual problems or blur…eye health issues like glaucoma, retinal holes and tears, tumors in and behind the eye etc may be completely asymptomatic. A comprehensive eye exam can also help detect systemic problems that you may be unaware of – like diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, multiple sclerosis, brain tumors and more…
Adults around 40 and over usually experience near vision blur called Presbyopia. Now there are a multitude of options to help correct Presbyopia and give clear near vision while reading – reading glasses, multifocal/bifocal/progressive eye glasses, multifocal/bifocal contact lenses.
This incredible technology allows your Eye Doctor to scan the internal lining of your eye called the retina and save this image on the computer for year to year comparisons. The retina has about 1 million nerve fibers in it and is an extension of your brain. The retina is also the ONLY place in the human body where a doctor can observe working nerve fibers and blood vessels WITHOUT cutting into the body. Subtle eye health changes can be documented, monitored and compared each year.
Your retina can show early signs of systemic problems that can cause damage to nerves and blood vessels such as Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol and more. Your retina can also demonstrate eye health issues such as Glaucoma, Retinal Detachment, Macular Degeneration and Eye Tumors and/or Eye Cancer.
Most of the time the patient does not need to have their eyes dilated in order for the Optometrist to obtain a good Optomap retinal scan – so this is a big benefit.
The TV show called “The Doctors” aired a segment discussing theOptomap Retinal Scan and the benefits of this technology during your yearly eye examination to preserve BOTH your eye health and your systemic health.
Erik Nunez is a South Florida resident and was a patient of Dr Dawn Bearden a few years ago in the Pembroke Pines office. When he was due for his last eye exam he just happened to be out of the country and visiting his family in Argentina. Erik had his eye examination from an eye doctor in Argentina and was never able to see out of his glasses very well.
Many people over the age of 40 start to notice eye strain and/or blurry vision at near distances – especially for small print. This is called presbyopia.
People who are over 40 with presbyopia need to wear some type of vision correction to read comfortably for small print held at a reading distance. If you are over the age of 40 – you are probably wearing reading glasses, progressive glasses or bifocal glasses. If you don’t wear these corrections now – chances are that you will soon need this type of correction to help you read comfortably at near.
But did you know that if you don’t want to depend on reading glasses or bifocal glasses – there IS another option available for you?? You could wear multifocal or bifocal contactsthat would allow you to see far away and close up at the same time.
Each Eye Doctor at Visionary Eyecare (in Pembroke Pines and Sunrise) is highly skilled at fitting bifocal and multifocal contact lenses for you. There are many different brands of bifocal contact lenses so the doctor will customize your contact lens fitting with the precise bifocal or multifocal contact lensfor you during your contact lens eye exam. Not everyone is a candidate to wear bifocal contact lenses so, the Optometrist will tell you if you are able to wear bifocal contact lenses and which lens would be the best fit for you.
If you are not a candidate for multifocal or bifocal contact lenes – there may be other options available to allow you to see distance and near at the same time. The doctor may be able to fit you with “monovision” contacts. “Monovision” is usually fit for people who have too much astigmatistm and are unable to wear the bifocal contact lenses. Monovision is when the doctor fits your dominant eye with a contact lens to see distance and your other eye with a contact lens that allows you to see near. Your brain usually adapts to this over time and you are able to see far away and close up without the use of glasses.
Every Visionary Eyecare Optometrist is skilled at fitting all of the above contact lenses but, not every eye doctor is comfortable fitting bifocal, multifocal or monovision contact lenses. So, if you are thinking of getting these types of contacts – check to see if your eye doctor is comfortable performing these types of custom contact lens fittings and evaluations.
We would like to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy Holiday season!!
Along with the holiday season comes the end of the year rush to get your eye exam and use your vision insurance benefits and/or your flex spending account. It gets REALLY busy the last week of the year…so don’t miss out on your opportunity to see the Eye Doctor this year…use your vision benefits today! You can use the links below to make an online appointment for your eye examination !
Well, if you were there – we’re sure you had a great time….Free Gift, Free Chair Massage, Raffle for Free IPod!!Visionary Eyecare in Pembroke Pines created a really fun Patient Appreciation event along with Lenscrafters Customer Appreciation event….. and here are the pictures to prove it!