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Bright Eyes Family Vision Care in New Tampa FL
Bright Eyes Kids in Westchase Fl

2 locations, 1 phone number
New Tampa & Westchase

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Bright Eyes News

Bright Eyes Myopia Control Superstars!!

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Here at Bright Eyes, we’ve been able to get a lot done in 2021! One of those things is our new wall display celebrating our Myopia Control Super Stars! We requested help with ideas earlier this year. Over the last dozen years, we’ve had hundreds of successful patients patients. We wanted to celebrate them with pictures!

In the main hallway at Bright Eyes Family Vision Care and in the waiting room Bright Eyes Kids we have the display: the friendly green circle in the middle surrounded by pictures of all kinds of patients. Some are in the exam room and some are doing whatever they love!

We are so proud of these Super Stars! They are in a program to help keep their vision from worsening. Different modes of evidence-supported myopia control treatment are MiSight 1-Day Contact lenses, Orthokeratology, and atropine medicated eyedrops. Every patient is different and each program is individualized for each patient.

We want more pictures! If your child is in our Myopia Control program to help keep their vision from getting worse and would like to send a picture for the Myopia Control Super Star Wall, email it to us at office@brighteyestampa.com! The best pictures are the ones.

-Dr. Nate

PS: If you have concerns about your children’s vision getting worse each year, call our office at (813) 792-0637.

Dr. Beth is a New Partner at Bright Eyes!

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Dr. Beth and Dr. Nate with the 2021 Best Practice Award

When Dr. Elizabeth Knighton “Dr. Beth” joined Bright Eyes in 2014, we were thrilled to have her. After all, she had specialty training in children’s vision and is extremely nice. Initially she saw patients two days a week and only at the Bright Eyes Family location in Westchase because the Bright Eyes Kids location in New Tampa was brand new and itself was only open 2 days a week.

Since then Dr. Beth has grown significantly with us. She has worked full-time with us for quite some time, splits her time between Bright Eyes Family and Bright Eyes Kids, and provides primary eye care, vision therapy, and sports vision. Additionally, she has weathered not only the challenges of the large expansion of Bright Eyes Family office, but also the global COVID-19 pandemic. She has also been through the great times, such as when Bright Eyes recently received the CooperVision Best Practices Award (above).

During the seven years that Dr. Beth has worked at Bright Eyes, she has truly embodied our mission to “to empower people by providing the best in friendly, professional, and innovative eye care.” She gives her all for patients, as patients tell us in Google reviews, like the one that says,

“My daughter has special needs and Dr. Beth was so amazing with her! Lots of patience and very kind. Highly recommend!”

So it is for all these reasons that I am incredibly excited to announce that Dr. Beth is no longer an associate doctor, but she is now joining me and Cristina as partner at Bright Eyes! This partnership will allow Dr. Beth more opportunities to improve patient care at Bright Eyes.

We look forward to working with her for a very long time!!

-Dr. Nate and Cristina

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Dr. Beth (second from right) and Dr. Nate (right) after completing the Keys 100 relay race.

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Dr. Beth and friends at the 10 Year Bright Eyes Anniversary.

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Dr. Beth and staff at the opening of Bright Eyes Kids.

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Dr. Nate, Dr. Beth, and a patient in Lego form.

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Dr. Beth being interviewed.

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Dr. Beth created a Great American Teach in Video in 2020.

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Dr. Nate and Dr. Beth podcasting.

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Dr. Beth and staff at The Glow Run in 2015

Bright Eye Wins “Best Practice” Award from CooperVision!

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Dr. Nate, Dr. Beth, and Cristina are proud to announce that Bright Eyes Family Vision Care has been honored with the 2021 CooperVision Best Practices donation! In the photo above, you can see the Bright Eye staff showing off the new plaque. This award is very meaningful because it shows how strong our passion is for our patients and their care. Every year CooperVision’s Best Practices program highlights optometric practices in the U.S. that advance the profession through innovation, industry leadership, and exceptional patient experience.

As CooperVision explains:

“Every year, we seek eye care practices who have tackled the profession’s challenges head on. But when we launched the Best Practices program, we never could have imagined a year like 2020 and the impact it would have on optometry. We weren’t sure what we would see in this year’s applications,” said Michele Andrews, OD, Vice President of Professional and Government Affairs, North America, CooperVision. “The stories we received were remarkable. It has been a true testament to the strength and resiliency of eye care professionals—that they have not only made it through the hardships associated with the pandemic, but that they have embraced them to make their practices stronger than ever. And they’re ready to share their secrets to success for the benefit of others. I’m so proud to partner with these new honorees.”

This is a great way for us to start 2021 off strong! We are ready for bigger and better things in the future!

-Dr. Nate

 

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Dr. Nate Earns Fellowship in the International Academy of Orthokeratology and Myopia Control

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I am excited to share that I am now a full-fledged Fellow of The International Academy of Orthokeratology and Myopia Control (IAOMC), a non-profit organization of practitioners and academics devoted to the science and education of Orthokeratology and Myopia Control. Since I have offered myopia management options for over a decade, becoming a Fellow has long been a goal of mine.

  • Ortho-K (short for Orthokeratology) is a non-surgical procedure using specially designed contact lenses to gently reshape the curvature of the eye to improve vision.
  • Myopia is a progressive visual disorder that results in poor distance vision. If the myopia is severe, it will impair near vision as well. Myopia is also known as “near-sighted” or “Short-sighted”.” Options exist to help limit the progression of myopia as a child grows.

 

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According to the Academy, these are qualities of a Fellow:

  • Fellows have undergone advanced training and rigorous testing to demonstrate their level of expertise in myopia control and orthokeratology
  • A Fellow is the gold standard and represents the highest level of knowledge, ethics and patient care in the myopia control.
  • Fellows serve as mentors and role models for other practitioners as well as the general public.

This was a year-long process which included presenting multiple complex case reports, passing both written and oral exams. The exams were supposed to take place at the annual meeting in Seattle in April, but the meeting was canceled due to COVID -19 and the testing process had to be completed remotely.

There are approximately 150 Fellows of the The International Academy of Orthokeratology and Myopia Control around the world. And I am one of only a handful that have earned 3 fellowships in the International Academy of Orthokeratology, the College of Optometrists in Vision Development, and the American Academy of Optometry.

I have learned a great deal in the process of becoming a fellow and I look forward to using this knowledge to better help my patients.

-Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD, FAAO, FCOVD, FIAOMC

BRIGHT EYES FAMILY VISION CARE AND BRIGHT EYES KIDS OFFER NEW APPROACH TO TREAT CHILDREN WITH NEARSIGHTEDNESS

 

First and only FDA approved contact lens to slow the progression of myopia in kids – call 813-792-0637 or click here to request an appointment.

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With the high demand of screen time from virtual learning it is crucial to keep an eye on kids’ sight. The increased screen time on computers and electronic devices can cause problems with nearsightedness, but there is a new treatment for Myopia. Dr. Nathan Bonilla-Warford from Bright Eyes Family Vision Care and Bright Eyes Kids is one of the first optometrists in the country to be certified in the first and only U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved MiSight contact lens.

 

The MiSight contact lens is a single use, disposable, soft contact lens that is discarded at the end of each day and is not intended to be worn overnight. The child can insert the contact lenses in their eyes in the morning and wear them for at least 10 hours during the day, then dispose them in the evening. The design allows the child to see clearly while benefiting from the treatment effect. The average age of children in the FDA trial is between eight to 12 years old, but the office is also seeing patients younger and older for this treatment.

 

“This is the first time the FDA has approved any method of treatment for Myopia and it is a landmark. Myopia is a problem that exists and MiSight is an option we can offer to our patients for their treatment,” said Dr. Nathan Bonilla-Warford of Bright Eyes Family Vision Care and Bright Eyes Kids in Tampa. Dr. Bonilla-Warford has noticed an increase in children who are visually symptomatic following the spring of online learning.

 

People with Myopia have good near vision, but poor distance vision. Myopia is very common in children and tends to increase, as they get older. Uncorrected vision problems can impair a child’s development and they may be susceptible to other future eye problems. The Bright Eyes team also offers additional treatment methods for Myopia management including eye drops and orthokeratology, specialized contact lenses that reshape the eye. It’s estimated that more than one-third of Americans are nearsighted, and it is increasing. The certification for MiSight is part of the Brilliant Futures Myopia Management Program.

 

The office is taking many safety precautions to protect patients and staff including screenings, enhanced cleaning, appropriate use of PPE and all paper work will be filled out online prior to the appointment. Bright Eyes also offers options for remote vision therapy sessions.

 

The Bright Eyes Lego Glasses Challenge!

If you have ever been to Bright Eyes Family Vision Care or Bright Eyes Kids, you have probably noticed the various Lego sculptures around. My kids and I are big Lego fans! And although we have 65 billion Lego bricks at home (low estimate), after one week of Virtual School, my daughter was already asking for a new Lego set. Your kids probably have been asking for Lego sets as well. While not every set is as expensive as the Imperial Star Destroyer, we know parents are not excited about spending money on toys right now either.

Bright Eyes is here to help with the #LEGOGLASSESCHALLENGE! Think of it as your child being on an episode of Lego Masters where they make Lego Glasses, but not, you know, actually on TV.

Skinny: Make Lego glasses and win one of two (2) $50 Lego gift cards.

Here is how to enter:

Step one:

Have your child (under 18 years of age) build some glasses with Lego bricks. They do not need to be functional glasses like mine, but they do need to be wearable, at least for a minute or two.

Step two:

Take a picture of your child wearing their Lego glasses.

Step three:

Post the picture as a comment on THIS FACEBOOK POST. Have your child write a sentence or more about what the idea is behind their Lego glasses on or before April 30th, 2020.

 

On May 1st, 2020, the Bright Eyes Staff will vote on the entries. These are the criteria we will be judging:

  • The creativity of the Lego glasses build. Go crazy and have fun!
  • The story behind the inspiration of the design. The more imaginative, the better!
  • The number of Likes their entry gets on Facebook. Get friends and family to vote!

On May 2nd, we will announce the two winners!!! We would LOVE to personally deliver the Lego sets to you, but we think that it is safer to just mail you a $50 gift card.

We cannot wait to see what you come up with!!!! 🙂

-Dr. Nate

Fine print: No purchase necessary to enter. By commenting on the Facebook post, you are entering the contest. Bright Eyes will not save, screenshot, download, or use the entries, nor identify the entrants in any way. Entrants must be younger than 18 years old. Entrants do not need to be established patients of Bright Eyes Family Vision Care or Bright Eyes Kids. Winners do not receive Lego sets or money. Two winners will receive a Gift Card redeemable for $50 at Lego.com or a Lego Store. Bright Eyes is not associated with Lego in any way. Lego is copyright Lego Group, Inc. If you have any questions or concerns about the Lego Glasses Challenge contest, please contact us directly.

 

Update: Contact Lenses and Coronavirus

We know that it is “information overload” right now, but we wanted to provide an update that is relevant to many of our patients: Contact lenses. Although the CDC has recommended refraining from routine eyecare visits, there is NO recommendation that you discontinue contact lens wear. You can wear contacts. Yes, there is a recommendation that all people try not to touch our eyes, nose, and mouth. As a contact lens wearer this is difficult.

In general, and specifically right now to reduce possible coronavirus infection, we always recommend that you wash your hands thoroughly (there is no shortage of ways to help you do that) before insert and removing contact lenses. Also follow all manufacturer recommendations and doctor recommendations.

If you will be needing a supply of contact lenses in the next 2-3 months you can order them here. We will soon be closing to non-urgent visits; however we are available by phone, text, and email, to help you. To help you out, we are extending contact lens prescriptions on a case by case basis without an evaluation. We are not sure how long the distributors will have contact lenses available so you may want to order sooner rather than later.

Please let us know what questions you have!

 

-Dr. Nate, Dr. Beth, and the Bright Eyes Staff.

 

 

Bright Eyes COVID-19 Clinical Update

Our patients’ health and safety is our number one concern.

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At this time the COVID-19 level in Hillsborough County and surrounding counties is HIGH. You can find specific details about about Hillsborough County rates, hospitalization, and deaths here.

As health care providers, our top priority is to protect our patients and staff. In addition to regular safety protocol, during high levels:

  • Do not come to the office with any symptoms of cough, fever, or symptoms of illness.
  • Masks are required in exam rooms and therapy rooms for all pts 2 years and older.
  • Masks are recommended in all other places in the office.
  • If you do not have a mask with you, we will provide one.
  • If all members of your family are not willing or able to wear a mask in the exam or therapy rooms, please contact us to reschedule your appointment when the COVID-19 risk is lower in Hillsborough County.
  • If you have questions or concerns, please contact us at (813)792-0637) to discuss.

For reference, here are our general safety policies. When you come to the office please be advised of these procedures:

  • DON’T COME TO THE OFFICE SICK. Please reschedule your visit.
  • FORMS: Please complete intake forms prior to your visit. These will be sent to you via email or text, to reduce paperwork and time in the office.
  • MASKS: All Bright Eyes staff members and patients over the age of 2 must wear masks or face coverings while in the office. This is to protect staff and other patients. If you have concerns about masks, please contact us BEFORE your visit.
  • HAND-WASHING & SANITATION: We ask that all patients and staff wash hands before exams or therapy visits. All equipment will be sanitized between patients. Eyeglasses will be cleaned after each patient.
  • RETINAL IMAGING: Our doctors want all patients, who are physically able, to have retinal imaging every annual exam. This is the best way to evaluate eye health and reduce prolonged close contact. Retinal problems such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, retinal holes, retinal detachment, and diabetes can be more easily found and documented.

 

Thanks for your cooperation and continued support! This page will be updated as the COVID condition change.

 

– Dr. Nate Bonilla-Warford, Dr. Beth Knighton, and the Bright Eyes Staff.

 

What one mom said after her experience at Bright Eyes:

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Order contacts through Bright Eyes NEW Contact Lens Webstore!

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At Bright Eyes, we take the health and safety of our staff and patients very seriously. Nationwide, people are practicing social distancing and enhanced hygiene to avoid the coronavirus.

While we are not usually crowded at Bright Eyes, we are adjusting the flow of patients overall – to continue to offer services, while keeping patient-to-patient contact to a minimum.

Want to order contacts, but don’t want to travel to the office?

Check out Bright Eyes’ new contact lens webstore: https://brighteyes.myclstore.com/

Enter your prescription yourself, or call the office and we will enter your prescription into the system.

We already offer competitive pricing, compared with major online retailers. Through April 30, we are adding special promos on all contact lens orders:

  • Extra 10% off our already competitive pricing (in-office or online)
  • If you buy an annual supply of contacts, you are eligible for an extra 10% off – meaning 20% off your contact lens order! (Please call or email our office to receive this extra discount!)
  • Free shipping for any number of boxes.

 

Many people don’t realize that Bright Eyes is a family-owned business, not a chain optical! Support your local business while enjoying the convenience of shopping online!

Thank you for your business! If there is anything we can do to help, just let us know.

 

-Dr. Nate and the Bright Eyes Staff

 

 

 

Vision Therapy and COVID-19 (updated)

Bright Eyes Family and Bright Eye Kids are now closed to all but eye emergency visits. We plan to reopen for vision therapy sessions as soon as the CDC and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis allow it.

 

Question: Do patients keep doing vision therapy if my child can’t come into the office?

Answer: This question will be answered on a case-by-case basis – contact your therapist!

To all of our patients and families enrolled in vision therapy, Like you, my family is adapting to life at home. My children are doing virtual school and taking online guitar and cello lessons. We have friends that are doing online taekwondo training. That is just how it is for a little while, but we don’t need to let it take control of our lives.

With schoolwork and leisure being held on digital devices during this time, helping our patients with visual symptoms is now more important than ever. Fortunately, Bright Eyes staff have experience doing online “remote vision therapy” – we have helped patients in different states and even different countries. There is no reason to lose momentum during this time. If your therapist has not already, we will be reaching out to you soon to discuss how we will proceed in your individual case. If there is anything we can do to help you, please let me know.

If a patient or family member actually contracts coronavirus, they may be too sick to do therapy or assist their child with therapy. If your family is in self-quarantine but the patient feels well, we recommend you continue home therapy activities and contact your therapist – we can email you ideas and variations! In the event that Bright Eyes must close for a period of time, we may offer remote therapy sessions on a case-by-case basis. (While remote therapy sessions are not the ideal way for patients to learn in the long term, we do not want patients to lose momentum, or to take an extended time to complete therapy, if possible.)

If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to us! We will remain vigilant, constantly monitoring the CDC’s standards, as well as city and state government advisories, and will openly communicate with you as the situation progresses. We care about our patients and staff, and will continue to work hard to keep everyone safe and healthy! Thank you for trusting us with your family’s vision!

– Dr. Nate, Dr. Beth and the Bright Eyes Family

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Read this Important Information About COVID-19 and Bright Eyes!