Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Getting To Know Dr. Terry Leach (Optometrist)

Meet Our Doctors
Earlier this month you had a chance to learn a little more about Dr. Jason Winterbottom, today we are featuring Dr. Terry Leach of our Western Hills office. As stated previously, we believe that it is very important for our patients know a little bit more about our optometrists. How can you have a true comprehensive and complete eye exam without a comfortable relationship with your eye doctor? We want you to know more about them and their professional opinions. 

Over the past month or so, I composed a series of unique and frequently asked questions that they are commonly asked. I then sent them out to our doctors for their responses. The goal here is to post each of our participating optometrists unique responses every few days on our blog. If there is anything you would like to ask do not hesitate to submit any and all questions to: 

Terry Leach, O.D. (Western Hills Office)

1. Name? 
Terry Leach

2. Why did you decide to become an optometrist? 
I was always interested in the eyes because all of my family had vision problems when I was younger and I always went to the exams with them and just became intrigued by it.

3. What do you like best about practicing optometry? 
I like the patient interaction and solving problems for the person to ,hopefully, better their lives in some way.  I love it when a patient tells me how much better they can see after I've examined them.  It's also rewarding to be able to help detect basic diseases like Diabetes by doing routine eye exams which helps the person's general health too.

4. Why do people need routine eye exams if they feel they see well?
People need routine eye exams even if they don't feel they are having problems for several reasons. Vision can change very slowly and people get accustomed to how the world looks and many times don't realize that their vision isn't as sharp as it could be. Another reason is that headaches that people sometimes associate with stress can be due to eyestrain especially if they are on a computer all day every day.  And many eye diseases like Glaucoma don't manifest in the vision until they are fairly advanced and the sooner we detect eye disease, the better chance we have of managing it. The last reason is that the eye is the only place that blood vessels can be viewed directly and blood vessels can be an indicator of what is happening elsewhere in the body. 

5. When should I bring children in for an eye exam?
Most children should probably have an eye exam by a professional by, at least, age 5 or 6. Ages 5-6 are my opinion. Some docs might say by age 4 or younger but in my opinion as long as the pediatrician makes sure their eyes are healthy and the eyes appear straight and not wandering I feel that they can wait till about age 5 for a full exam. Again, just my opinion, but I do see 4 year olds and sometimes 3.

 Many times if a child is having trouble learning to read it's because they have a vision problem and not because they have a learning problem. Farsightedness, which means trouble mainly seeing close objects, can be hard to detect by a pediatrician or an eye chart on a school wall. So it's important for children to have good vision during those critical years when they are learning to read. 

6. What type of contact lenses do you recommend? Daily, Monthly, Bi-Weekly? Why? 
1 day disposable contact lenses. They are healthiest.  

7. Do you recommend the Optomap Retinal Exam? Why? 
Yes because it gives me the best view of the back of the eye to help determine if there are any problems with the health of the eye.

8. Why do you recommend some tests even though they are not covered by 
Insurances sometimes don't cover procedures done with new state of the art technology until it is proven to them that it is a needed part of an exam to best determine the overall health of a person's eyes.  So we sometimes want to do further testing with our new equipment to make 100% sure that everything is ok with a person's eyes.  Many times, after a few years, these new tests are determined necessary and become covered by insurance.  But by that time some eye problems may become advanced and we don't want to wait for that to happen so we recommend them at a time we feel it is necessary for a patient's well being.

9. How important are sunglasses? What’s the difference between sunglasses sold at Wing Eyecare and the 
sunglasses sold in grocery stores and mini marts?   
Sunglasses are important to protect the eyes from UV light just like sunscreen does for the skin. UV and blue light can damage the lenses of the eye as well as the retinas in the back of the eye.  Polarized sunglasses are the best sunglasses a person can have and cheaper, off the rack sunglasses don't offer the type of protection from the sun that polarized sunglasses do. Polarized lenses also cut the glare much better than regular sunglasses which gives better vision in general.

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