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What to Expect During Your Optical Exam and Other FAQs


Drs. Jeff Broadhead, Michael Chism, and Francis J. Wapner provide a comprehensive eye care FAQ to help you feel prepared for your upcoming visit to our office.

How often should I get my eyes checked?

Most eye diseases have no early symptoms.  Early detection saves vision.  

To help us maximize your vision and protect your eye health, we recommend Vision & Eye Health Exams for all patients every year, even when you are not experiencing a decrease in vision.  

At what age should my child's eyes be tested?

  • Once between 6 and 24 months.
  • Once at age 3, or as recommended for higher risk.
  • Before Kindergarten, then Annually or as recommended.

Are you going to puff air in my eye?

No.  Everybody hates the air puffer.  So do we.  To screen for glaucoma we use the most gentle method available – the iCare Tonometer.  Patients feel a tickle, if anything.  

What happens during an eye exam?

The doctor and technician will check the clarity of your vision (visual acuity) and take a careful history to learn what your goals and concerns are for the visit.  

We perform a Maximum Clarity Assessment (or refraction) to help us provide prescription lenses to maximize your vision.  

We thoroughly check for eye diseases using both tradition and advanced technology.

If you want to explain it to your young children you can say:  "You’ll be asked to look at lights, pictures, and letters.  It’s easy."  

Do you examine children?

Yes.  And we enjoy kids.  Dr. Broadhead has eight kids.  Dr. Chism has three.  Most of our staff are moms or grandmas.  We even have a “kids corner” with toys while they wait.  Each new patient gets a gift.     

How would you approach examining my special needs child?

If your child has behavioral issues, autism, spectrum disorder, Downs’ Syndrome, is non-verbal, or has other special needs, we take individual abilities and personalities into account and tailor our approach to make the child as comfortable as possible.  

If you have a concern about how your child may do during the exam, feel free to call us in advance and have the staff give the doctor a heads-up.  Moms and dads know their children best.  Your suggestions on how to best approach your child are welcome and very helpful. 

Sometimes we do as much as a little person will allow us to do and then plan a time to come back and finish the rest of the exam.  We are flexible and happy to help. 

Do you speak Spanish?

Sí.  Con mucho gusto. 

Something is happening with my vision.  How do I know if it’s urgent?

When in doubt, call and ask.  Let us help assess the situation.  Click here for a few guidelines.  

If it’s after hours, call 801-506-6303 and follow the prompts to be transferred to the doctor on call. 

If I have an eye emergency, should I go to the ER or call you?

Try us first.  We can handle most eye emergencies.  

Visiting your optometrist for urgent eye needs will get you to the right care the quickest and for much, much less than an ER visit.

In the event an eye specialist is needed, we can refer you directly.  

If you cannot reach us, and you are experiencing severe pain, decreasing vision, double vision, extreme light sensitivity, you should call the ER.  

I work on a computer all day.  Can this hurt my eyes?

The amount of radiation emitted from computer monitors is very low and considered well below the maximum allowed for safety.

High-energy blue light emitted from screens can contribute to eye strain in some patients.

Dry eye from a reduced blink rate during computer work can lead to dry eye symptoms and discomfort.

Many computer users find relief with low-magnification specialized computer lenses.

Bifocal users often suffer from neck aches from lifting their heads to see and would benefit from a dedicated computer prescription.  

Do you provide contact lens prescriptions?

Yes.  We fit all types of contact lenses, including advanced designs for difficult-to-fit cases.  A printed copy of your contact lens prescription is provided once the prescription is fitting and evaluation process is complete and the doctor authorizes the prescription.  

I’m interested in Lasik.  What do I need to know?

First of all, you’re in the right place.  Lasik is awesome!  We can help you determine if you are a candidate by measuring your eyes and discussing how Lasik fits with your vision needs, lifestyle, and goals.  Click here for more information about Lasik.

I heard about overnight contacts that correct vision.  How does that work?

Vision correction using overnight contacts is referred to as ortho-k, gentle vision shaping, orthokeratology, or CRT.  We are ortho-k providers.  Click here for more information on how to find out if ortho-k is right for you.

How old is old enough for contact lenses in children?

Age is less important than readiness and maturity.  Parents usually have a sense of when their child is responsible enough to follow instructions and practice good hygiene.  Contact lens materials have improved allowing us to fit contacts in younger children, when the vision needs and goals of the parent and child suggest contacts to be a good option.  Ask for more details during your Vision & Eye Health Exam, and we’ll be happy to discuss it with you.  

What does “20/20 Vision” actually mean? 

“20/20 vision” is the standard of normal distance vision for a human being. Basically, it means "good visual acuity at 20 feet." So if your vision is 20/20, you can read certain sizes of letters on chart easily at 20 feet or closer.  If your friend has 20/15 vision, his visual acuity is better than yours.  Conversely, someone with 20/30 vision has worse distance vision than you.

By the way, visual acuity at a distance isn't the only measure of how good your vision is. You could have 20/20 distance vision but still have difficulty seeing at night because of poor contrast sensitivity. Or you could have near vision problems because you're over 40 and experiencing presbyopia.

What is an optometrist?

An optometrist is an eye doctor who specializes in maximizing vision and preserving eye health.  And optometrist is a primary eye care provider -- a primary care doctor for your eyes.  Click here for a more complete description.

How do I find your office?

Patients can find easy access to our office.  We’re on the corner of Bangerter and 9800 South, granting easy access to residents of West Jordan, South Jordan, Riverton, Herriman, Bluffdale, Draper, West Valley, and Midvale.  

Here is a link to our location and office hours.

Send Us a Message

...[T]he best eye doctor I have ever had … genuine, caring, amazing, staff … I will recommend anybody and everybody including all of my family to change over to them. I have never been so happy and satisfied and confident in an eye care doctor or business. If you're thinking about trying out somewhere new this is the place!!!

Denise P. - June 2017

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South Jordan Office

3556 W 9800 S Ste 104
South Jordan, UT 84095

Open Today 8:00am - 7:00pm

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