Dr. Luis Navarro believes sight is precious. Like many people who wear glasses or contacts, he first discovered this on a trip to the eye doctor as a child. “When I was 12 years old, I went to go get an eye exam and I was prescribed a pair of glasses. I put them on and I was able to see very clearly! It was phenomenal and almost magical to me,” says the optometrist. The difference he experienced inspired him to earn his degree in optometry from Puerto Rico in 2006, and today he shares this magical feeling of clear vision with his patients at Edinburg Vision Center.
“I thought that all those guys did was prescribe glasses and contacts,” remembers Dr. Navarro of his childhood impressions of optometry. “I was very naïve! As I got older, I realized that optometrists check for everything.” Dr. Navarro has assisted in diagnosing people with ailments such as arthritis and multiple sclerosis. He loves being able to help people, and says his job is especially rewarding when people come back and say thank you. He also enjoys the lack of redundancy. On a typical day he can see anything from someone getting fitted with glasses for the first time to removing foreign bodies from the eyeball. He has even detected a tumor or two.
His work doesn’t stop outside the office, though. Dr. Navarro is president of the Rio Grande Valley Optometric Society; he says that most of the eye doctors in the area participate. Dr. Navarro has a responsibility to ensure they all have necessary information. Since optometrists need a certain amount of continuing education hours to keep their licensure, the society hosts seminars to keep members up to date. It is that type of commitment that drives Edinburg Vision Center to continue the work they’ve been doing for almost 50 years.
Edinburg Vision Center, now operated by Dr. Navarro, first opened on June 11, 1968, under the guiding hand of a doctor by the name of Gary Ahlman. “He’s the one that hired me to come and work here,” says Dr. Navarro. “By the time that I showed up in 2007, he was nearing retirement. We were then able to transfer the practice into my ownership,” he explains. His office is appealing to patients because it has a clean environment, friendly staff, and a lab. The lab is unique because they have a lot of equipment that make it possible to have a pair of glasses in your hands the same day. Dr. Navarro says their office can make about 70 spectacles daily.
See for Yourself
Many people love the way they look in glasses; there is an equal population that hates the look or feel of frames on their face. Contact lenses are the solution for some people’s aesthetic situation as well as athletic, as anyone who’s ever tried running in glasses will attest to. However, those choosing to wear contacts should be sure to follow their contact provider’s instructions and be especially hygienic. “With contacts, the number one reason people get in trouble is because they sleep with them in or they over-wear them,” he explains. With new types of contacts in the market that can be worn for different lengths of time, it’s important to be sure what is safe for the ones you are using.
Dr. Navarro is often asked for guidance on whether patients should use glasses or contacts, but he believes there is no right answer. “I think that whatever is best for that particular person is what’s best for that particular person,” he says. As people wear contacts for a variety of reasons, he is hesitant to make blanket claims. Each eye can have its own prescription, and each person can choose the most comfortable way to improve their vision for themselves.
The Edinburg Vision Center is open Monday through Friday 8:20 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. They are always accepting new patients and the staff will work diligently to assist you in any way they can.