July is Dry Eye Disease Awareness Month

Also known as dry eye syndrome, this common disorder affects tens of millions of people in the U.S. Symptoms can include itching, burning, redness or a foggy sensation.

Our eyes are the only organs exposed to the outside, and it’s important to take care of them. They produce oily tears which shield sensitive tissues, and production can decrease due to age or the use of certain medications. This reduces the ability of the tears to protect the eyes.

Dry eye syndrome can also be a symptom of other disorders, so if you are experiencing symptoms you should certainly see your eye care provider for a comprehensive eye examination.

Treatment for dry eyes can include eye drops and/or supplements. Consult your eye care provider during your eye examination for more complete information.

Image credit: Eye in Closeup! by Tobias Dalberg

Why see a Licensed or Certified Optician?

AZSTBRDDGOPTCNS-300x290Suzi Coleman, July 2015


We live in a very exciting time, with so many options to purchase eyewear. Since they are your most important accessories, it’s great to be able to choose multiple pairs in a variety of styles so you’ll always look and see your best.

Traditionally, Opticians have been your “go-to” person to assist with selection and fitting of eyewear. Eyeglass prescriptions can be tricky to fill correctly, and opticians in many states go through testing to meet competency standards to become certified or licensed. They are also required to continue their education on an ongoing basis. In Arizona, Opticians are overseen by a licensing board, known as the Arizona State Board of Dispensing Opticians. There are national guidelines for the manufacture and dispensing of prescription and safety eyewear, and Opticians are responsible for ensuring that your eyeglasses conform to those standards.

There are many different types of lens materials available today, and with such diverse prescription needs your Optician can guide you through the maze of choices. They are also experienced in frame style selection combined with prescriptions and materials. Buying a great fitting pair of eyeglasses can give you long term comfort visually and physically, while a poorly fitting pair can make you miserable.

Just as a Cadillac really shouldn’t be compared with a bicycle, although they are both considered transportation, custom ordered eyewear can be a completely different experience when compared to ready-made or patient-ordered. When you consider the quality, fit and comfort of custom eyewear, visit your local Optician, and expect to be educated on precision technology, materials and the latest fashion.

Suzi Coleman loves finding the best fit for individual customers and has been a licensed optician in the state of Arizona since 1981. Currently practicing in Flagstaff, she is the current Secretary of the Arizona State Board of Dispensing Opticians.

Image credit: Great Seal of the State of Arizona