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From childhood to late adulthood, your eyes are constantly changing. We help you keep up with your ever-changing visual and eye health needs with comprehensive eye exams at our Norfolk optometry clinic.


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Your Eyes Change Over Time...

Your eyes are constantly changing as a result of age, and because of things like climate, hormones, pregnancy, medications, and your lifestyle. Just like visiting your family doctor for an annual physical, your eyes should be checked every year to ensure you're seeing properly, and to monitor for signs of potentially sight-threatening eye diseases.

With office hours Monday through Friday, 8:30 am to 6:00 pm, we offer eye exams that are convenient for your schedule.

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What Is a Comprehensive Eye Exam?

A comprehensive eye exam at Southern Eyecare Associates involves a thorough, detailed examination of your eyes and visual abilities. During the exam, Dr. John Dragon will speak to you about your medical history, and ask if you have any family history of diseases or health issues. We will speak to you about your lifestyle, and any medications you may be currently taking. This helps us get a full picture of your overall health, and allows us to create a custom eye care plan just for you.

The comprehensive eye exam includes a number of tests to assess your overall eye health. We’re proud to offer our patients eye exams using the latest cutting-edge optometry equipment and technologies.

An essential part of any comprehensive eye exam is a refraction test. This is what most people think of when they think about eye exams. You’ll be asked to look through a special device called a phoropter, focusing towards an eye chart, which is usually about 20 feet away from the chair. Dr. John Dragon will test different lenses to see which ones give you the clearest, sharpest vision. This will help determine which lenses are the best for you.

Children's Eye Exams in Norfolk

At Southern Eyecare Associates, we understand that each stage of childhood demands different eye care and eyewear solutions. Toddlers, school-age children, and adolescents each have their own particular needs at these various stages of life. In relating the importance of vision for our younger patients’ success in school and extracurricular activities, our eye care team often points out that an estimated 80% of all learning relies on the visual system. This is why undiagnosed and untreated eye diseases and visual skill deficiencies can have such a devastating impact on your child’s ability to thrive.

Difficulty concentrating or acting fidgety can often be misdiagnosed as ADHD, when in reality the child has undiagnosed vision problems. Symptoms can include headaches, tiredness from schoolwork or playing sports, or excessive squinting at the board.

Don’t wait until your child falls behind in school. Schedule a pediatric eye exam with our Norfolk eye doctors at Southern Eyecare Associates today!

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How Long Does a Comprehensive Eye Exam Take?

Eye exams at Southern Eyecare Associates are very thorough, which is why each exam can take up to a full hour. We perfomr a complete analysis of your vision and eye health, so that Dr. John Dragon can make sure your vision is at its best, helping you enjoy life to the fullest.

No two patients are alike. Should the doctor discover any eye conditions that need treatment, we will create a customized treatment plan for your particular needs.

Based on your specific case, the doctor may perform any of the following tests:

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Visual Field Test

Your visual field is the area that you see while looking at a specific object. This includes both your central and peripheral vision. For example, when you look at a car, your eyes are focused on it, but you may also see things that surround the car, such as flowers on the ground or rain falling on the windshield. When testing your visual field, we want to assess your ability to see what is in this area. If we find that you have blind spots in your visual field, this may be a sign of certain optical or neurological issues.

Refraction Exam

A refraction exam is one of the most basic and essential parts of an eye exam. Refraction refers to the way light is bent as it enters the eye. When there is an imperfection in the eye's ability to refract light properly, it causes blurry vision. The 2 main vision problems from refractive issues are nearsightedness and farsightedness. The doctor may conduct this simple test by either shining a light into your eyes to check how the light bends through it, or using a computerized test.

Binocular Vision Assessment

Similar to how binoculars allow you to use both eyes simultaneously when looking at something far away, binocular vision is the ability of your left and right eye to focus on an image or object so that your brain “translates” the image into understanding what you’re seeing. At its basic level, binocular vision means how the eyes work together as a team. This is an essential part of depth perception, which allows you to judge distances, reach out and grab objects, and avoid bumping into things.

Color Evaluation

A color evaluation tests the ability to differentiate between colors. It is usually done with Ishihara color plates, a series of round circles with colored dots inside that form a number. The patient studies the image, either on paper or on a computer screen, and determines if they can clearly see the number. This is an important test because difficulty distinguishing between red and green often is a sign of color blindness.

Eye Pressure Test

A tonometry test, more commonly referred to as an eye pressure test, checks the amount of pressure inside your eye. High inner-eye pressure can signal glaucoma, which may not otherwise be showing any symptoms. This is why the eye pressure test is an essential part of comprehensive eye exams at our Norfolk eye clinic. This test involves eye drops which numb the eye, followed by a small device that the doctor uses to gently touch the eye, checking pressure levels.

Peripheral Vision Assessment

Peripheral Vision is the ability to see what is to the side without moving your head. While your eyes may be focused on an image or object, you can still see things around that focal point. The doctor performs this assessment by instructing you to focus on something directly in front of you, such as a pen. Then you’ll be asked what you can see to the side or slightly away from that object. This test can determine if there is any loss of peripheral vision, which can indicate a number of eye diseases, such as Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy, or Retinitis Pigmentosa.

Digital Retinal Imaging

Digital retinal imaging technology allows the doctor to check the health of your retina. The image is captured from a special digital camera. The camera takes a photo of the retina, which is located in the back of the eye, and stores the image electronically. This is crucial to your vision needs because the retina helps focus light that enters your eye and sends images to the brain, so that you can ultimately understand the things you see.

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Corneal Mapping

Corneal Mapping is a process involving the measurement of the cornea. Dr. John Dragon will use a computerized system and/or a keratometer to collect exact details about the size and shape of your cornea. This is done to ensure that the curvature and size is correct, which allows light to enter your eye so that you can focus on images and see clearly.

OCT Scan

Similar to a traditional CT scan, an OCT Scan (Optical Coherence Tomography) checks for eye diseases by examining the layers of your retina and optic nerve. This test involves the use of a laser with light to provide the doctor with detailed, colored images of the retina. There is no radiation and the test is painless and non-invasive.

Visual Acuity Test

Visual Acuity is the ability to see clear, sharp images from various distances. To test this skill, the doctor will instruct you to look at an eye chart in various types of bright lighting. The smallest letters or numbers that you can clearly see determines your level of visual acuity.

  • Our eye care team is proud to offer eye exams using the most cutting-edge optometry technology available today.
  • Have an eye exam scheduled at our Norfolk eye clinic? Read up on what to expect when you come in.