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Optometry Specialist

Scarbrough Family Eyecare

Optometry located in Traverse City, MI & Beulah, MI

At Scarbrough Family Eyecare, our optometrists Dr. Scarbrough and Dr. Reed practice full-scope optometry. This means that in addition to managing vision conditions like nearsightedness and farsightedness, they diagnose and treat certain ocular diseases as well as monitor general health conditions that can affect ocular health or vision. The field of optometry has changed tremendously over the last 30 years and new technology has made it possible to better detect and manage most ocular conditions.

Optometry Q & A

What is the difference between an ophthalmologist and an optometrist?

The two main types of eye doctors are optometrists and ophthalmologists. The difference between an optometrist and an ophthalmologist is similar to the difference between a dentist and an oral surgeon.

Both optometrists and ophthalmologists have to undergo extensive training and are qualified to examine the eyes for vision and health problems. Both can diagnose refractive errors, such as farsightedness, nearsightedness, and astigmatism, and prescribe eyeglasses or contact lenses.

As optometrists, Dr. Scarbrough and Dr. Reed are qualified to diagnose and treat a wide range of common eye conditions and prescribe medications if deemed appropriate. However, if you need surgery or specialty care, they may refer you to an ophthalmologist. Scarbrough Family Eyecare is happy to serve as the primary care source for your eye health needs and can even provide pre- and post-operative eye surgery care.

Why do I need to get regular eye exams?

Eye exams help determine how clearly you see. They also allow you to get a prescription for corrective lenses to treat refractive errors like nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism. In addition, eye exams are crucial to detect eye health problems, which is why it’s important to get them regularly, and not just when you notice changes in your vision.

If your vision has gotten worse, you may simply need stronger glasses or contacts. However, vision changes may also be a sign of a serious condition, like glaucoma, macular degeneration, and diabetic retinopathy. Many of these conditions only cause noticeable symptoms after they cause significant vision damage, so the best way to treat them is by catching them early, through an eye exam.

Depending on your age and eye health risk factors, you may need an exam once a year or once every two years.

What happens during an eye exam?

Eye exams include a series of tests to evaluate your vision and eye health. They usually last at least a half hour. Your exam at Scarbrough Family Eyecare may include:

Visual acuity test

You look at letters on a chart or screen that get smaller as they go down. This measures how clearly you can see and determines if you have 20/20 vision (or how far your vision is from 20/20).

Refraction assessment

We have the latest computerized refracting system so you will receive an accurate prescription with a minimal amount of choices between “which is better, 1 or 2?”.

Glaucoma test

We will not only check the eye pressure to screen for glaucoma risk, but we use the latest technology to scan the optic nerve for damage and a visual field instrument to measure peripheral vision.

Pupil dilation

Your doctor may give you eye drops that enlarge your pupils so they can see the structures in the back of your retina. We also have the latest wide-field retinal scan called the Optomap that may allow us to adequately assess the retinal health without having to use dilating drops.