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Podcast Episode #1 – Who We Are

Note: This is the first episode of our new podcast that will cover all aspects of vision care. You can listen in the player below or read the transcript. The show is available via Stitcher, Google Play, iTunes, and the webplayer below. You can find all episodes here. If you have any suggestions for future episodes, please email office@BrightEyesTampa.com.

-Dr. Nate

Episode 1 transcript:

Dr. Nate: [00:00:00] From sunny Tampa Bay is the Bright Eyes podcast. This is episode number one. I’m Dr. Nate Bonilla-Warford.

Dr. Beth: [00:00:09] And I am Dr. Beth Knighton.

Dr. Nate: [00:00:11] And today’s episode is all about us. In the future, we’re going to talk about different aspects of eyes and vision care and different things that you can do to take care of your eyes and improve your vision. But for today since this is our very first podcast episode we’re going to introduce you a little bit about us our practice and how we do things. So how are you feeling, Beth?

Dr. Beth: [00:00:39] I’m feeling great.

Dr. Nate: [00:00:41] Are you excited?Warford 2597 color 239x300

Dr. Beth: [00:00:42] Yes.

Dr. Nate: [00:00:42] Are you excited to be doing podcasts?

Dr. Beth: [00:00:44] Yeah. 🙂

Dr. Nate: [00:00:46] So first off, I have lots of experience in podcasting. My first podcast was in 2010 to 2013. I also do another podcast with an ophthalmologist which we do every month and I think it is a wonderful medium to share information. I’m an avid podcast listener. I listen to podcasts literally every day. So I think it’s fantastic and I’m excited to do it. What about your experience?

Dr. Beth: [00:01:19] Yes I am excited to do this new adventure here learning about podcasts and getting our information out there to everybody.

Dr. Nate: [00:01:29] Great. So a little bit about me. I grew up in north central Florida and I went to University of Florida. I got my Optometry degree at the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago. I did my residency in Pediatric Vision and Vision Therapy also at ICO and then we moved back to Florida and we opened Bright Eyes Family Vision Care here in Westchase in 2006. We’ve been working here for the last 11 years. I say we because my wife Cristina is the office manager and we’ve grown from a tiny office with just a handful of staff to two offices with about 16 staff members.Dr EK Pic 224x300

Dr. Beth: [00:02:16] I grew up in Clearwater, Florida. I went to the University of South Florida in Tampa for my undergraduate degree and then I also went to the Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago like Dr. Nate and went on to do my Pediatric Residency at the University of Houston in Texas and I stayed on there teaching for a little while. But Florida is my home and I was able to come back this way. So now back in the Tampa Bay area I reached out to Dr. Nate. And at that time he was looking to expand to create the second office which is Bright Eyes Kids and so I was able to join the Bright Eyes family in 2014 and started out part time and grew as the practice did. And now here at the Bright Eyes Westchase office and the Bright Eyes Kids office full time with Dr. Nate

Dr. Nate: [00:03:17] Yes. And it is fantastic. I love having a doctor that I can work with and ask questions to and we can talk about cases and different experiences even though we both went to the same optometry school we did different residencies and so we have different experiences and that helps us serve our patients better.

Dr. Beth: [00:03:44] And it’s really great – it is a lot of fun.

Dr. Nate: [00:03:48] Dr. Beth spends a little bit more time at the family practice. I spend a little bit more time at the kids office and that’s primarily just because she lives closer to the Westchase office and I live closer to the New Tampa office because we’re both plenty capable of doing both but we have a lot of fun.

Dr. Beth: [00:04:09] We really like our job and working with patients of all ages. It’s surprising to people when they find out that we routinely see patients that are six months old. Sometimes a little younger. It’s something that we really enjoy.

Dr. Nate: [00:04:28] What do you do when you’re not working with patients.

Dr. Beth: [00:04:33] I love spending time with my family and I especially love spending time out on my small sailboat. I love being outside doing pretty much anything whether it’s camping or biking. We always love being outside and Florida is a great place to be doing all those things as opposed to our cold winters that we had in Chicago.

Dr. Nate: [00:05:01] It was cold. It’s true. I also like doing things outside. I like to run and go camping. We have a lot of people in my family who play music and so we make music and I like to read and spend time with my family. And sometimes when we have time we like to travel and I’d say that’s mostly what we do.

Dr. Nate: [00:05:31] So we’re going to cover many topics about eyes and vision glasses contacts and vision therapy and Ortho-K. What other topics are we going to cover?

Dr. Beth: [00:05:45] We’re going to cover brain injuries and how that affects the eyes. We will cover why sunglasses are important for your vision and even topics about certain eye diseases you may have heard of like cataracts and macular degeneration.

Dr. Nate: [00:06:02] Yes. So thank you for listening to our very first episode ever. If you have any questions comments or suggestions you can e-mail us at office@BrightEyesTampa.com. Until next time. Have fun and be safe.

If you have questions about your or your children’s eyes or vision please call us at 813-792-0637 or use the button below to request an appointment.
Schedule An Appointment

Brought to you by Bright Eyes Family Vision Care and Bright Eyes Kids. Find previous episodes and more detailed information at BrightEyesTampa.com. Creative Commons Copyright attribution, non-commercial use.

The only purpose of this podcast is to educate and to inform. It is no substitute for professional care by a doctor experienced in the area you require. This podcast is provided on the understanding that it does not constitute medical or other professional advice or services. Please consult your physician for diagnosis and treatment.

Intro and outro music by Lucas Warford.

7 Tips to Survive Allergy Season

The tree pollen counts are sky-high this week in Tampa. According to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, more than 60 million Americans suffer from allergies. The same yellow dust that is coating all of our cars is also getting into our eyes. Are you suffering this week from itchy, red watery eyes? It may be due to ocular allergies, also known as allergic conjunctivitis. Some people can even have ocular allergies without allergies affecting the nose and throat.

Allergy forecast(from www.pollen.com)

So, what can we do to survive the spring??

  1. Wear sunglasses to help prevent pollen falling into your eyes.
  2. Look up the pollen counts so you can plan your outdoor activities for lower pollen count days. The pollen levels are typically highest on windy, dry, sunny days.
  3. Keep your windows closed to avoid airborne pollens.
  4. Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes.
  5. Shower after outdoor activities to rinse the pollen off your skin and hair. This pollen will continue to irritate your eyes, nose and throat even after coming inside.
  6. Contact lenses can sometimes magnify the itchiness you experience. Some people get relief with daily disposable contact lenses or changing contact lens cleaning during allergy season. Come in for an exam with Drs. Nate or Beth to see what would be best for you.
  7. Consult with your primary care doctor or allergist to see if an allergy medication is right for you.

Call our office to schedule an appointment if you suspect ocular allergies are affecting you.

-Dr. Beth.

How Can an Eye Exam Detect High Cholesterol?

“Why is my eye changing color?” is a question we are asked from some patients. While there are conditions that can change the actual color of the eyes, typically the “color change” they are noticing is an accumulation of cholesterol deposits in the cornea. Yes, cholesterol!

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that 27.9% of Americans have high cholesterol. Most of the time high cholesterol has no symptoms, so many people may not even know they are affected. More importantly, if people are aware of cholesterol, they seldom think about how it affects their eyes. Neither are they aware that a complete, dilated eye exam can detect signs of high cholesterol.

When Dr. Nate and I evaluate the eyes during an exam, we look for signs of high cholesterol in several places:

  • EYELIDS

Yellow fatty deposits of cholesterol can show up on the eyelids or on the skin around the eyelids, called xanthelasma (zan-the-laz-muh).

  • CORNEA

With the microscope, we look for cholesterol deposits in the cornea, called arcus. Normally the cornea is a clear tissue on the front of the eye, but when cholesterol deposits develop, it causes a white or gray ring to develop along the outer edge. The cornea is a natural place for cholesterol to accumulate over time, so this is a common finding in patients over 60 years old.

  • RETINA

A piece of cholesterol, or plaque, may be seen in the arteries of the retina after dilating your eyes. If there is a small plaque in the retinal vessels of the back of the eye, it is likely that there are larger plaques in other places of the body. Large plaques increase your risk for heart attack and stroke. This is one more reason why we encourage patients to have their eyes dilated at their annual eye exams. With both eyes dilated, Dr. Nate and I can look closely at those vessels to rule-out these kinds of concerns.

If Dr. Nate or I find any of these signs, especially if you are under 60 years of age, we may ask you more questions about your lipid levels or even recommend that you get blood tests done with your primary care doctor.

Don’t delay your annual eye exam! Getting your eyes checked should be included in your routine “appointment days.”

-Dr. Beth

New Florida Car Seat Rules Go Into Effect Today

My kids are 5 years and 7 years old. They are still in booster seats. I always thought this was

Nora in her car seat

Nora in her car seat

pretty reasonable. I also thought this was the law, but I was wrong. Until today, car seats or booster seats were only required for children up to age 3. Now they are required for age 4 and 5, as well.

Here is the official Florida statute:

316.613 Child restraint requirements.

(1)(a) Every operator of a motor vehicle as defined in this section, while transporting a child in a motor vehicle operated on the roadways, streets, or highways of this state, shall, if the child is 5 years of age or younger, provide for protection of the child by properly using a crash-tested, federally approved child restraint device.

1. For children aged through 3 years, such restraint device must be a separate carrier or a vehicle manufacturer’s integrated child seat.
2. For children aged 4 through 5 years, a separate carrier, an integrated child seat, or a child booster seat may be used.
I think this is totally reasonable. In fact, a quick look at the recommendation flyer of the of the National Highway Traffic Safety Association includes recommendation up to age 12: “Keep your child in a booster seat until he or she is big enough to fit in a seat belt properly. For a seat belt to fit properly the lap belt must lie snugly across the upper thighs, not the stomach. The shoulder belt should lie snug across the shoulder and chest and not cross the neck or face. Remember: your child should still ride in the back seat because it’s safer there. “

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Annual Reminder: Use It or Lose It

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It’s that time of year again!

Remember to use ALL of your vision insurance benefits this year. Many expire or run out on December 31st. If you are not sure, call us at 813-792-0637 and we can check. Also, you can make great use of your flex spending account / health savings account to get an eye exam, an annual supply of contacts, or a brand new pair of designer sunglasses for that special someone

PS: Eyeglasses make great gifts too! 🙂

 

Floaters – What Are They? [video]

People constantly ask me about floaters. This is good because they are paying attention and they know that they have been told that if they have a sudden change in floaters, either size or amount, they should call or come to the office right away to evaluate for potentially vision threatening problems.

But for most people, it turns out that we have floaters normally, we just don’t notice them that often. Right now, if I look at the computer screen and space out, I can see them, but I haven’t thought about them all day.

This is a nice little video that my mom sent me that explains floaters in an easy to understand way. I thought it would be good for sharing.

-Dr. Nate

Bright Eyes Family Vision Care and Bright Eyes Kids

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Bright Eyes Kids is Coming Soon!!

Bright Eyes Kids

Bright Eyes Kids is coming soon!

Since we opened Bright Eyes Family Vision Care in 2006, the number of pediatric patients has steadily grown. At first we saw very few, but now almost half of our patients are under 18 years old. And that is no accident. After I completed my Residency in Pediatric Optometry and Binocular Vision in Chicago, I knew I wanted to work with kids. I wondered if I was crazy for moving home to Florida, the retirement capital of the world.

Well, lo and behold, there are children in Florida and many of them need eye care. So we have been planning for the last year to expand our services specifically to children. And I am now very, very happy to announce that in March we will be opening a new location specifically for children’s eye care. Called Bright Eyes Kids, it will bring the skill and care you expect from us at Bright Eyes Family Vision Care to New Tampa and be tailored specifically for children!

Why New Tampa? Well there are many reasons. The first is that we frequently have patients that come from areas such as Gainesville, Winter Haven, and other places east of Tampa. Located near I-75, the new office will be much more accessible for patients because they will not have to drive all the way across town. Another reason is that my family and close relatives actually live in the New Tampa area and it will be great to practice closer to home. The new address is 15303 Amberly Drive, Suite C, Tampa, FL 33647.

What will be offering at Bright Eyes Kids? Eye exams for infants, toddlers, and gradeschoolers and teens. We will be fitting contact lenses and specialty glasses for young kids. We will have an expanded area to offer vision therapy, to help children develop the visual skills they need to be successful at school and life. We will offer orthokeratology for kids who want 20/20 vision all day while not wearing glasses or contacts.

But don’t worry – nothing will change at Bright Eyes Family Vision Care in Westchase. I will still be seeing patients there regularly and we will. Moms, grandpas and other adults are welcome to come see us there!

Now, please. Help us making Bright Eyes Kids the best it can be by completing this very, very short survey. While we are finalizing details about the new office, this is your chance to help us get them right. Click here to take the brief survey.

Dr. Nate

By Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
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New Ray Ban Eyewear at Bright Eyes!

Bright Eyes is so excited about our newest frame line: RAY-BAN!

A well-known eyewear brand, Ray-Ban eyeglasses come in iconic styles such as the very popular Wayfarer, and come in colors from bold blacks to cool blues to flirty pinks. The bold geek-chic frames continue to grab the attention of people of all ages. You’d be surprised how many kids want glasses just like mom or dad! So we have children’s Ray-Bans too!

Ordered by popular demand, our Ray Ban frames are fit for the youthful adult and the trendy child. Ray Ban frames are well-made, comfortable, and fun, which is why patients have been requesting them for months. (Ok, ok, we heard you!)

If you’ve never been to Bright Eyes, but want to try some great Ray-Bans with our eyeglass fashion experts, we are located in the Westchase neighborhood of Tampa at 9912 W. Linebaugh Ave 33626. Our eye doctors are great with adults and children, and strive to provide the best eye care and an enjoyable experience.

Around this time of year people are in a rush to use-up their Flex Spending account before it’s too late. I think we got Ray Bans just in time! 🙂 For this season, we are offering a Holiday Special where patients receive $100 off a complete second pair of glasses.

Call to make an appointment with one of our optometrists before the end of the year – 813-792-0637. We currently accept these vision plans: VSP (Vision Service Plan), VCP (CompBenefits), EyeMed Access Plan, and Superior Vision. You can use your vision insurance for the first pair of glasses, and still take advantage of our Holiday Special to save $100 on a second pair of glasses.

Happy Holidays!

 

Dr. Nate

By Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care

Adorable Video on Eyes, Vision, and Eye Disease

 

I think we have found our primary training video for all employees! It is great. You simply MUST watch this amazing educational video about eyes, vision, and eye disease. For one thing, it is adorable! Second, it is quite accurate.

If you have a child who is interested in the eyes and vision, watch this video with them. They will enjoy it, I promise. It covers:

Parts of the eye:

  • Cornea
  • Iris
  • Pupil
  • Lens
  • Vitreous Body
  • Macula
  • Retina
  • Optic Nerve

These conditions:

  • Nearsightedness
  • Farsightedness
  • Glaucoma
  • Macular Degeneration
  • Diabetic Eye Problems.

It also has cool eye and vision science experiments. And as my friend Ann Z from Little Four Eyes said after watching the video, “All science experiments should involve safety glasses and oreos.” I couldn’t agree more. 🙂

This video is part of the Learning is Fun series, created by the Amazing John John and his mom. Think of him as Bill Nye, only cuter and shorter. A very curious and photogenic little guy, he has done videos on everything from magnets to layers of the earth. I’ve watched a bunch with my kids and they love them. My staff does, too. You can check him out at http://amazingjohnjohn.wordpress.com. He is on Twitter and Facebook, too.

Can’t wait to see more from him!

 

And don’t forget! Sunday, August 4th is the Great Glasses Play Day! Tons of activities for kids (and grown-ups!). Free sunglasses (like those above) for all kids!

All the best!

Dr. Nate

By Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
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End of Year Benefits

Dec 11FB

Also, If you still have vision benefits with your employer’s vision plan such as:

  • Vision Service Plan- (VSP)
  • CompBenefits- (VCP, HumanaVision)
  • Eyemed
  • SuperiorVision
  • others

Your vision benefits for 2011 may go unused if you do not act now. Your vision insurance offers you quality healthcare at deep discounts. We remind our patients each year so they may take advantage of the benefits before the end of the year. Your insurance entitles you to a comprehensive eye examination and either a pair of quality eyeglasses or a generous allowance towards contact lenses. Co-pays do apply as well as upgrade options.

If you have questions, contact your employer’s HR department. You can also contact us to determine the last time you used your benefits. We look forward to seeing you soon.