Where are you located?

We are located in the Park at West Cary Medical building. The building is located on the corner of Carpenter Fire Station Rd and Cary Glen Blvd. There is parking behind our building. From the parking lot, you’ll come up to the second floor and our office is located right next to the elevators. You can also enter our office from the front, facing Carpenter Fire Station Rd.

Are you open on the weekends?

No, we are closed on Saturdays and Sundays. We operate Monday – Friday:
Mondays & Wednesdays- 9AM – 7 PM
Tuesdays & Thursdays- 8AM – 5PM
Fridays- 8AM – 1PM

How often should I get an eye exam?

Once annually is our recommendation!
According to the AOA, adults should have an eye exam at least every 2 years. We recommend annual visits to evaluate changes in vision and eye health. Even adults without vision or eye health concerns should have a routine eye exam annually. Children and adolescents are more likely to experience rapid changes in vision, so they are recommended to have an eye exam yearly.
Annual eye examinations are especially important for people that wear glasses and/or contact lenses, are taking medications that are known to cause vision loss or visually-related side effects, have a family history of eye disease, have diabetes or high blood pressure, or have experienced a previous eye surgery or injury.

What is involved in a routine eye exam?

A comprehensive eye exam consists of two main parts: the Refraction & the Health Examination. The Refraction is the part of your exam that evaluates your vision and determines any eyeglass prescription you might require. The Health examination is an evaluation of the internal and external health of your eyes to detect important sight-threatening medical issues.If medical concerns are discovered during a routine exam, you may be scheduled for a return medical evaluation to further evaluate those concerns.

Do I need to bring anything to my appointment?

For a routine eye exam, we ask that you bring with you the following:

  • Photo identification
  • Insurance cards (medical and/or vision)
  • Any current glasses or contact lenses you are using
  • A list of current medications
  • Any current eyedrops you are using
  • A valid method of payment (we accept cash, debit/credit, HSA/FSA, CareCredit, and check)

What if I can no longer make it to my appointment?

If possible, we ask that you call to notify us at least 24 hours in advance of your appointment. No-shows are subject to an $80 fee that must be paid before we can allow rescheduling

Will I be dilated at my appointment?

Our doctors HIGHLY recommend a retinal exam YEARLY. This can be done through dilation and/or retinal screening scans. Retinal exams are very important to ensure proper evaluation of the inner eye. With retinal exams, we are able to detect, diagnose, and treat diseases and defects that would otherwise not be found with only an external exam.

How long does dilation last? What does it feel like?

Eye dilation typically lasts between 4-6 hours. The length of time depends on the strength of the dilating drops and the condition of your eyes. For example, children may need stronger doses and the effects may last up to a full day. People with lighter colored eyes may also experience longer lasting effects.

Dilation does not affect your ability to drive home from your appointment. Dilation does not have a significant effect on your distance and intermediate vision. It may make your near vision a little blurry or uncomfortable. Dilation will also cause light-sensitivity which is why we recommend bringing sunglasses or taking a pair of our disposable sunglasses at your appointment.

Do I need to be dilated every year?

The frequency of dilated eye exams depends on your risk factors for eye disease. The risk of eye diseases increases depending on age, ethnic background, certain health conditions/medications, and family history. Dilation is typically advised for adult patients at their first visit to our office, and then periodically thereafter based on that patient’s specific risk factors. Our providers all recommend retinal imaging with the Optomap at every comprehensive exam for all patients, and that technology can sometimes reduce the frequency of dilation by providing a view of nearly the entire retina.

It is important to note that we also have other methods of evaluating your internal eye health- ask your technician about Optomap Retinal Screening at your next exam!

Can my child come to their appointment alone?

Yes! However, we kindly ask that you complete a ‘Minor Consent Form’ on our website giving your permission for the child to be seen without supervision.

Additionally, we ask that you confirm with your child that they bring a few things to their appointment: Current glasses/sunglasses/contact lenses, a list of their current medications, family history information, and a valid method of payment.

What’s the youngest pt you’ll see?

We have no minimum age requirement. We offer infantSEE exams as well as all ages. However, it is important to note that an eye exam for an infant is going to be different than an eye exam for an adult or even an older child.

My child is too young to express vision difficulty. How do I know if my child needs an eye exam?

There are various signs of eye strain or vision problems in children. If you notice that your child…

  • frequently blinks or rubs their eyes
  • closes one eye for better focus
  • complains of headaches or fatigue
  • tilts their head to the side
  • holds reading materials or devices close to or far away from their face
  • complains of double vision
  • has an eye that strays to one side or the other
  • has difficulty reading or remembering what they’ve read
  • has unusual inattention at school


Where are my glasses?

Glasses ordered through our office are estimated to take between 12-14 business days to arrive. We order our glasses through a professional lab that takes time to process, manufacture, quality check, and then ship your glasses. If you are wondering about the status of your glasses order, you can email

How do I get a copy of my RX?

Call our office (919-465-7400) or email us at to request your prescription. We can send it to you via email, fax, postal, or you can pick up a copy in our office.

How long is my prescription good for?

Eyeglass and contact lens prescriptions are valid for one year from the date of your eye exam in our office.

How do I read my prescription?

What is astigmatism?

Astigmatism is a common imperfection in the curvature of your eye’s cornea or lens. With astigmatism your vision is blurry at all distances. It occurs when the cornea or lens of the eye has an abnormal shape, which prevents light from focusing properly on the retina. This causes a refractive error, which means light bends differently as it enters the eye. Astigmatism can be corrected with prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses.

What is a PD? How do I get my PD?

PD stands for Pupillary Distance. It is the distance between the pupils of your eyes. It’s important for making accurate prescription eyewear that fits the face properly. This is typically measured by an optician when you order a prescription pair of glasses. This measurement is the responsibility of the office selling your glasses, and will always be performed at no additional cost when glasses are purchased from our office. If you would like our office to measure your pupillary distance but are NOT purchasing glasses from our office, you can get it measured for $25. The doctor does not measure this during your exam.

My RX didn’t change much- do I still need new glasses?

It is completely up to you. The doctor will make recommendations for new glasses and it is always in your best interest to keep your glasses up-to-date. However, it is never required to change your lenses or frame.

Why are prescription readers better than my OTC readers?

OTC readers generally have poor lens quality, can’t correct astigmatism, and have the same prescription in both eyes.

Prescription readers are catered specifically to your eyes needs and will provide better comfort and vision!

What are computer glasses?

Computer glasses are prescription glasses that are designed to wear when doing computer work. Computer glasses are usually optimized for the distance between your eyes and the computer screen. Reading glasses are designed for a closer range, usually around 14–16 inches. Computer glasses will also often include blue-light blocking technology to reduce the eye strain and headaches that are usually associated with digital screens.

OTC suns vs RX suns

Rx sunglasses are prescription glasses that also provide complete sun protection. While non-prescription sunglasses are great deterrents to squinting because of the sun and may look fabulous, they don’t provide sharp vision to their wearer.

A must-have feature for all sunglasses is complete (100%) protection against the potentially damaging effects of the sun’s ultraviolet A (UVA) and ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. Avoid buying over-the-counter (OTC) sunglasses that do not offer 100% UV protection. Dark OTC glasses prompt the pupil of the eye to dilate (enlarge), allowing UV rays to enter. So, if OTC glasses lack complete UV protection, they can paradoxically promote damage to the eye.

How do I use my progressive lenses?

Progressive lenses, also known as no-line bifocals, are designed to be worn all day and allow you to see clearly at different distances without lines in the lens. To use them effectively, you can try these tips:

Position your head
Move your head up and down to focus through different areas of the lens:

  • Distance: Look straight ahead and look around as you normally would.
  • Intermediate: Hold your head straight for arm’s length vision.
  • Near: Look through the lower portion of the lens and point your nose at what you’re reading. You can also try dropping your eyes and raising your chin.

Use your nose
Instead of moving your eyes side to side, use your nose to follow along with what you’re reading or looking at.

Be patient
It can take a few days to a few weeks to get used to progressive lenses, especially if your new frame is smaller than your previous one. Common complaints include blurry vision, headaches, nausea, and balance issues.


What insurances do you accept?

Vision vs. Medical
Accepted Vision Plans:

  • Vision Service Plan (VSP)
  • EyeMed
  • Community Eye Care

Accepted Medical Plans

  • Aetna (Does not include: Aetna Duke, Fairfax Co. School – Aetna Retiree)
  • Blue Cross Blue Shield (Does not include: Healthy Blue, Superior, Davis Vision, Blue 365 or Blue Vision)
  • Champs VA
  • Cigna (Does not include: Cigna HMO Connect)
  • Humana
  • Medicare (Includes all Medicare supplemental plans)
  • Tricare
  • United Health Care (Does not include: UHC Vision or Spectera)
  • UMR
  • Veterans Affairs
  • Meritain Health
  • Medcost

Do you take CareCredit?


Do you accept Medicaid?

No, we are not in-network with Medicaid. As far as federal health insurance, we only accept Medicare, Veterans Affairs, Tricare, and ChampsVA.

What does my insurance cover?

Your coverage depends on your plan! Many vision plans offer benefits for the routine eye exam and refraction, contact lens exam services and materials, and eyeglass lens and frame. For more specifics on your coverage, we recommend you call the phone number on the back of your insurance card!

What is the difference between my medical and vision insurance?

Vision insurance offers benefits for routine eye care. Medical insurance will offer coverage for anything that is considered “non-routine” in eye care. For example, if you need to visit us for a medical reason such as an eye infection, injury, or additional diagnostic testing, this is considered “non-routine” and will be billed to your medical insurance.

Why do I need a CL evaluation every year? And why is there an additional cost?

The contact lens exam is separate from the routine eye exam. This is because a glasses prescription is different from a contact lens prescription. Contact lenses sit directly on your eye, whereas glasses sit in front of your eye. That, although small, distance is enough to completely change a prescription. Like we do with glasses, we evaluate changes in your prescription annually.

Contact lenses are considered an optional medical device. A contact lens specific eye exam involves extra measurements not included in a comprehensive eye exam. Simply put, it is more work for the doctor to do a contact lens evaluation on top of the routine exam, therefore, it is an additional cost. The cost will also depend on the complexity of your prescription.


Childhood myopia- what is it? What can I do about it?

Myopia, or nearsightedness, is a very common refractive error of the eye and causes distant objects to be blurry and close objects to be clear. Myopia usually begins in childhood and tends to worsen with age. A myopic eye is elongated, causing light to focus in front of the retina, leading to blurry distance vision.

We know that a less nearsighted eye is a healthier eye. Higher amounts of myopia lead to an increased risk of glaucoma, cataract, retinal detachment, and myopic degeneration. Research shows that children who are nearsighted typically worsen over time. The rate of myopia in the United States rose from 25% in 1971 to 41% in 2004, and it continues to grow. By the year 2050 it is expected that half of the world’s population will be nearsighted! The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now view progressive myopia as an epidemic.

Fortunately, you do not have to just watch your child continue to become more nearsighted. We now have the technology to slow this progression and, in some cases, stop it altogether. Myopia control techniques such as specialty contact lenses and prescription eye drops have been shown to slow the progression of myopia, resulting in lower prescriptions and healthier eyes. Our clinic is extremely dedicated to fighting the myopia epidemic and is recognized as an expert in the field of Myopia Control. We invite you to call our office for an appointment (919-465-7400) with our Myopia Control Clinic to see if we can help preserve your child’s sight.

Vision therapy

While Cary Vision Therapy is affiliated with Cary Family Eye Care, it functions as a separate facility. Cary VT is located in Suite 207.
Vision Therapy is a program of individualized activities directed towards developing visual skills to improve visual function and efficiency in our daily lives. Vision Therapy helps individuals develop visual skills to use their eyes, brain, and body better together. Our program is designed to promote visual development. Vision Therapy is often recommended to address visual issues such as amblyopia, strabismus, eye movement disorders, learning-related visual problems, convergence insufficiency and other visual dysfunctions. Vision Therapy typically involves a series of structured activities and exercises tailored to the individual’s specific needs.
For more information about Vision Therapy, visit

What treatments do you offer for Dry Eye Disease?

Cary Family Eye Care is proud to offer Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) and Systane iLux for the treatment of dry eye.
For more information about these treatments, contact us at

My doctor asked me to return for an MPOD- what is that?

The MPOD stands for Macular Pigment Optical Density. This amazing technology helps to check your eyes’ natural defenses against blue light by measuring your macular pigment. Your macular pigment is found in the center of the macula, the area of the retina responsible for your central and detail vision. Made up of two unique substances called lutein and zeaxanthin, macular pigment acts as a sort of ‘internal sunglasses,’ that play a vital role in protecting the macula against the harmful effects of blue light, which usually comes from electronics such as smartphones, television, and computer screens, as well as from the sun. The density of each person’s macular pigment varies and has even been known to change over time in the same person based on age and dietary factors. With this quick and easy test, we can assess your risk for macular degeneration and suggest treatments.

My doctor prescribed me supplements. What kind of supplements should I be taking?

Many people turn to dietary supplements to prevent or slow the progression of certain eye diseases, such as cataract, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), glaucoma, and diabetic retinopathy.

What is diagnostic testing?

Your doctor may order diagnostic testing at your routine visit if they determine that you are potentially at increased risk for ocular diseases or conditions. We will generally schedule you to return to our clinic on another day for additional testing to help the doctor determine your risk, diagnose, and treat ocular disease. Common diseases and conditions that require diagnostic testing include but are not limited to: glaucoma, macular degeneration, the use of certain medications such as Plaquenil, and brain injury.