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

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InfantSee Vision Screenings for Infants 6 to 12 Months of Age

Most people are surprised to hear that the American Optometric Association recommends eye exams to begin at six months of age. By six months, your child has met several important developmental milestones. At birth, the eyes begin to focus about a foot away from the child, mostly looking at faces. Around two months old, the child is learning to look around. At this point, the eyes don’t always coordinate well together. Your child should be able to track moving objects by four months old and begin reaching for things. As their eye hand coordination improves, they will become more accurate in reaching for things.

IS logoInfantSee is a no-cost public health program that provides vision and eye health evaluations for children from ages six to twelve months. At your child’s InfantSee screening, Dr. Nate and I will be evaluating how well your child can see using specialized tests for infants. We look for excessive or unequal amounts of farsightedness, nearsightedness or astigmatism. If your child does need glasses to help them see better, we have a variety of frame lines at Bright Eyes that are designed specifically for infants and toddlers: Tomato, Miraflex and Bright Eyes Kids frames. Dr. Nate and I will also check your child’s eye alignment and eye teaming skills. During these kinds of tests, the children usually think we are just playing games with them, but in fact we are gathering lots of useful information about their eyes and vision. Additionally, we may dilate your child’s eyes to check for eye health problems. This is a normal procedure that we do for all ages, and we will only dilate your child’s eyes with your (the parent’s) consent.

It is important to look for risk factors that can cause vision problems in the future. If caught early, many vision problems can be corrected or prevented. Even if your child does not appear to have an eye or vision problem, you should bring them in for their first evaluation.

You may remember Dr. Nate’s blog about his daughter’s InfantSee examination. Check it out for cute pictures.

Call our office at 813.792.0637 or click on the button below to schedule an InfantSee appointment at either the Westchase or New Tampa location. Or visit InfantSee.org for more information.

-Dr. Beth

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Michigan Governor Declares this week InfantSEE week.

InfantSEE from the AOA

Like many Optometrists, I provide visual care to infants. I support the effort in Michigan to get the word out about this important program

“(Dr. Daniel) Mosser, Dr. Robert Barnett II, Dr. Carolyn Ormes and Dr. Barry Morrisson are Martinsburg-based optometrists who will be participating in the clinic program, which was set in motion after Gov. Joe Manchin declared May 4 through May 16 InfantSEE Week.

This week, more than 50 eye doctors statewide will be providing free comprehensive eye and vision assessments for babies between 6 and 12 months of age, by appointments only.

Br. Bonilla-Warford participates in InfantSEE. If you have a little one who is 6 to 12 months of age, bring her or him to Bright Eyes for a no-cost visual assessment because it’s easier to prevent a visual problem than treat one!

Be Well!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

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Great Info on Infant Visual Development

My Colleague Dr. Dan Fortenbacher maintains a blog called EXCELerated Vision that contains lots of great information on vision and visual development.

Recently, there have been some very useful posts on Infant Vision. The first contains an audio interview with Dr. Andrea Thau, one of the founding members of the InfantSee program. She discusses the importance of infant vision examinations.

There are also recent posts that contain detailed lists of ways to encourage proper visual development for babies 0 to 3 months and 4 to 8 months of age. If you have a little one in your life, I encourage you to check this out.

Be Well!
Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

 

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth 17 Pounds of Cuteness.

nora1My daughter’s name is Nora. She is, of course, adorable. And since I am an eye doctor, I have been watching with interest how her eyes and vision develop since she was just minutes old. First she opened her eyes. Then she got better at moving them (but not necessarily together.) Finally, she developed a wide-eyed inquisitive way of looking at things that has not faded.

Since before she was born, my wife Cristina and I have done our very best to take care of her and made sure that she received all the care and attention that she needed. We have a wonderful pediatrician who has seen her many times. Fortunately, Nora has always been healthy (except for that first ear infection). She is a happy baby girl and she appears to be growing fast without any problems. But there still are some aspects of her eyes and vision that have not been checked fully.

Nora recently turned 7 months old. That means it is time for her first comprehensive eye and vision assessment. For the average baby, all the visual skills should be significantly developed by six months old. The American Optometric Association recommends the first eye exam at six months of age, then at three years of age and every year while in school. So with the help of my father and Cristina, Nora received her first eye exam.

infantsee1sLike I do with all infants, I first checked that she can see well out of each eye. I then made sure her eyes are straight and not drifting inward or outward. I checked to see if her eyes can turn inward the proper amount when she looks at an object or toy up close. I shined some bright lights in her eyes to make sure that her pupils react properly to light. They did.

By using a special flashlight called a retinoscope, I was able to determine if Nora had any refractive error (nearsightedness, farsightedness, or astigmatism). It turns out that she has a small amount of farsightedness, which is perfectly normal. Most commonly, the large amounts of refractive error that a baby may have tend to diminish over time (a process called emmetropization), but it is good to have a baseline measurement to see if the error is increasing, staying the same, or decreasing.

After I was convinced that Nora was seeing well and her eyes moved well for her age, it was time to check out the health of her eyes. I looked closely at all the parts of her eyes on the outside to make sure everything was healthy and working well. Then I sprayed eyedrops onto her eyes to enlarge her pupils to allow me to see inside. This is the same type of drop that we use for adults when we dilate their pupils, but the spray makes sure we get it in their tiny eyes without too much fuss.

infantsee2s1The drops take 15 minutes or so to take effect, so we all went out in the waiting area. We passed the time by trying on some baby sunglasses, which were very cute on her. After the spray worked its magic, I had Cristina hold Nora and I examined very carefully all around the inside of Nora’s eye to make sure all the nerves, blood vessels, and other parts of her eyes were healthy.

So now that Nora’s eyes have a clean bill of health, I don’t need to examine her again until she’s three years old. And, really, she did great. She a had a good time playing with the toys, and I can sleep at night knowing that she’s been thoroughly checked out.

If you have an infant at home between the ages of 6 and 12 months, the InfantSEE program will provide one evaluation like Nora’s at no change. Call the office or visit InfantSEE.org for more information.

Merry Christmas!

Dr. Nate

Nathan Bonilla-Warford, OD
Bright Eyes Family Vision Care
Located in the Westchase area of Tampa.

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