Frequently Asked Questions

What is an optometrist?

Doctors of Optometry are primary health care providers who examine, diagnose, treat and manage diseases, injuries, and disorders of the eye and associated structures as well as identify related systemic conditions that affect the eye. Visit the American Optometric Association for more information regarding the education and training of an optometrist.

What is a comprehensive eye examination?

A comprehensive eye examination assesses the visual status and ocular health. Although these two are often dependent on one another, they are distinctly separate. Visual status evaluates stereopsis or depth perception, color, visual field, eye movements, and coordination, including the ability to accommodate or focus, neurological reflexes and refractive error, or how light focuses on the retina. Examination of ocular health evaluates the external and internal eye for diseases that affect it and vision from the tear film and cornea to the optic nerve, which connects to the brain and is viewable inside the eye. Only by examining the visual system properly can an exact eyeglasses prescription be determined.

My child already had their eyes examined at school; do they need to see an optometrist?

Vision screenings performed at school are not comprehensive examinations and are designed to identify those children that would benefit most from having a complete eye examination. All children can benefit from regular eye examinations throughout development and are one example of why our doctors participate in InfantSEE®.

When should I have my eyes examined?

Many individuals take their vision for granted and seek care when they can’t see as well as they once could. In fact, a complete eye examination is recommended on a routine basis as part of your regular healthcare to ensure optimal vision, early diagnosis, and appropriate treatment of issues that may arise. Making this evermore critical is the fact that many eye diseases and conditions are painless and reduce vision gradually, often making it difficult to detect individually.

If you are a generally healthy adult between the ages of 18 and 40, have no symptoms of vision problems, and have no family history of eye disease or blindness, an eye examination is recommended every two to three years. After the age of 40, every two years is recommended. After the age of 60, or if you wear contact lenses, you should be receiving annual eye examinations.

If you are an adult at risk for eye disease due to family history, diabetes, high blood pressure, or other medical condition that can affect visual health, you should be seen annually or as recommended by our optometrists.

Children should be assessed between the ages of 6 and 12 months and then examined prior to entering kindergarten. Based on eye examination results our doctors will recommend an appropriate schedule typically consisting of every one or two years through adolescence. It is very important to have children’s eyes examined prior to the age of 9 to rule out their potential for amblyopia.

Why Doesn’t My Insurance Cover This?

Williamsburg Eye Care recognizes the important role vision benefits have played in improving access to eye care for millions of Americans. Vision plans vary widely in coverage and are designed to share in your eye care costs and may not cover your entire bill. If you don’t fully understand your benefits you are not alone. If you have questions regarding your vision coverage speak to your employer or human resources officer or contact your insurer directly. Ultimately, you need to know how your vision plan is designed and its limitations.

Routine Vision Coverage vs. Medical Benefits

Routine vision benefits can be applied towards your eye examination, eyewear, contact lenses, and contact lens examination. The criteria for eligibility, what is covered, and how often, depend on the specifications of your vision plan.

Medical benefits, or major medical, can be applied when there is a medical diagnosis. For example, a patient complaining of blurred vision in one or both eyes for a period of time. If the reason for this blurred vision is determined to be cataracts, the visit may be billed to your major medical. However, if the reason for blurred vision is a change in nearsightedness, your routine vision benefits would be billed. Similar medical reasons for the examination can include but are not limited to diabetes, glaucoma, eye infections, etc. For this reason, we will ask you to copy your medical card as well as your vision benefits card if applicable.

We are in-network providers for nearly all medical plans. With a medical diagnosis such as diabetes, cataracts, etc., or a chief complaint leading to a medical diagnosis we will file your visit with your medical insurer. Deductibles and specialist co-pays apply as designated by your plan.

If there are no medical eye conditions present your vision benefits may cover your visit based on whether we are providers for that plan. We participate in vision plans that allow us to deliver the level of eye care consistent with our commitment to you and your family. Our staff will answer insurance questions to the best of our ability. Ultimately it is the patient’s responsibility to provide insurance identification and know their vision coverage.

If you have vision coverage through Davis Vision, Eyemed, Spectera or Blue View we will offer a 20% savings on eyewear. We will also provide an itemized receipt that may be filed for reimbursement.

My doctor told me I have to see an ophthalmologist; what is the difference?

This is often a knee-jerk reaction and in today’s world simply isn’t true. As medicine has progressed optometrists have become the primary eye care provider, diagnosing and treating most conditions affecting the eyes and when necessary directing care to the appropriate surgeon. Ophthalmologists are typically surgeons providing tertiary care in areas of corneal, cataract and retinal surgery, including refractive procedures such as LASIK, eye muscle surgery, and ocular plastics, among others.

What is an eye or ocular emergency?

The definition of an emergency is different for different people. At Williamsburg Eye Care we feel strongly that if the situation is important to you, it is important to us. However, a true eye emergency includes the following, in no particular order:

  • Sudden onset of reduced or loss of vision involving one or both eyes

  • Sudden onset of double vision

  • Eye pain

  • Trauma to the eye and/or orbit

  • Unequal sized pupils

  • Chemical exposure

  • Foreign object in the eye

  • Redness and/or light sensitivity

Drs. Lundberg and Lodwick share after-hours calls. If you find yourself in need during office hours, please call 757-564-1907. If it is after office hours you will be prompted to contact the doctor-on-call.

What is 20/20 vision?

Visual acuity of 20/20 is a standard that indicates that you can clearly see an object at 20 feet what should normally be seen at that distance. If you have 20/40 vision, you can see at 20 feet what someone with 20/20 vision can see at 40 feet. It is a standard that only indicates the sharpness of vision and does not necessarily represent perfect vision. Other important visual skills include peripheral awareness, depth perception or stereopsis, contrast sensitivity, accommodation, and color vision.

Can I sleep in contact lenses?

There are specific contact lenses available that are approved by the FDA to be worn overnight, known as extended wear. These lenses are a combination silicon-hydrogel lens, allowing oxygen to pass through the lens to the cornea. The cornea is avascular, meaning there are no blood vessels within it, and receives most of its oxygen from the atmosphere. When we sleep without a contact lens on the eye the cornea swells due to reduced oxygen availability through our eyelids. This swelling dissipates quickly once we wake. When we sleep with a contact lens on the eye, this swelling is greater depending on the oxygen transmission provided by the lens material. Silicon-hydrogel materials provide enough oxygen transmission that there is essentially no residual swelling. The amount of oxygen a lens material allows through it does not reduce the risk of an eye infection. In fact, extended-wear increases one’s risk of developing an eye infection or corneal ulcer. If you develop a red, painful eye, or experience reduced vision or light sensitivity, stop wearing your contact lenses and call our office.

Are there any risks with contact lenses?

Eye infections and/or corneal ulcers are risks associated with contact lens wear. Because the number one cause of eye infections is hand-to-eye contact, it is extremely important to wash hands with soap and water prior to handling a contact lens. Despite some contact lenses having FDA approval for overnight wear, sleeping in a contact lens, whether approved for extended wear or not, increases the risks of an eye infection and/or a corneal ulcer.

How do I purchase contact lenses?

Like prescription drugs, contact lenses are by prescription only and may be purchased through different sources. Similar to sample drugs your primary care physician may give you, the diagnostic lenses Williamsburg Eye Care uses initially are provided to our office by contact lens companies based on the number of contact lenses purchased from our office. If we did not offer contact lens purchases, these same companies would not provide us the very lenses we fit patients in initially. Furthermore, should your prescription change throughout the year or you have a fault with several lenses in a box, Williamsburg Eye Care stands behind the lenses purchased from our office. We will make all necessary changes in order to accommodate your needs. Many contact lens manufacturers offer rebates on lenses purchased from our office, which have leveled the cost of lenses to you. Ask at the front desk for details regarding rebates.

For your convenience, you may order contact lenses through our website or by phone and we can ship them directly to you, making ordering lenses through our office more convenient.

How do I take care of my eyewear?

Proper care of your eyewear and lenses will ensure clear vision through lenses that are free of scratches. To clean your lenses, rinse them with tap water and shake. You may use an approved lens cleaner and lens cloth to then gently dry the lenses. Such lens cloths should be clean and free of dirt to prevent scratches. Do not use abrasive cleaners such as Windex® or anti-bacterial soaps.

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