Old Town Family Eye Care has been having growing pains. Over the past 45 years the practice has grown into every nook and cranny it could find at its original location in the Old Town Shopping Center. “After all these years, the offices needed major renovations,” said owner Dr. Alex Appanaitis, also known as “Dr. A.” “We also needed more space.” So when the owners of The Village at Robinhood heard Appanaitis was in the market to expand, they quickly recruited the practice to move to the shopping center on Robinhood Rd.
In March, the office made the move into a new 4,000-square-foot location. It also changed its name from Old Town Family Eye Care to Forsyth Family Eye Care. Dr. Appanaitis and his associate, Dr. Amy Gurley, both agree that the move has been a lot of work, but the hard work is quickly paying off. “Before we even opened, we had new patients walk in and schedule eye exams. One gentleman even went ahead and picked out his frames!” said Dr. Gurley.
“Our main focus is maintaining healthy eyes,” said Dr. A. The new location has six examination rooms instead of four, allowing the doctors to accommodate patients’ busy schedules.
A trip to the optometrist is about more than just how sharp a patient’s vision is; it is also about the health of the eye. The practice treats patients of all ages, from infants to geriatrics. Many people are surprised that infants need an exam. “Even if no eye or vision problems are apparent, the American Optometric Association recommends scheduling your baby’s first eye assessment at six months,” said Dr. Appanaitis. This practice is a member of InfantSEE®, a public-health program, managed by Optometry Cares® – the AOA Foundation, which is designed to ensure that eye and vision care become an essential part of infant wellness care to improve a child’s quality of life. Under this program, Forsyth Family doctors provide a comprehensive infant eye assessment between six and 12 months of age as a no-cost public service.
During a normal visit for children, vision is tested for excessive or unequal amounts of nearsightedness, farsightedness or astigmatism, as well as eye movement ability and other eye health problems. “It is very important to identify children who are visually impaired,” said Dr. Appanaitis. “Vision development and eye health problems are easier to correct if treatment begins early.”
The practice also treats the most common eye diseases from conjunctivitis (pink eye) to diabetic eye disease, to glaucoma and macular degeneration.
Since most patients visit once a year to maintain their vision, eye doctors have a unique and long-term relationship with their patients. This yearly contact strengthens a lifelong relationship between the practice, the patients and their families. Many patients have been with the practice for the entire 45 years.
Not only do patients stay with Forsyth Family Eye Care, but so does the staff. Many members have been with the business for more than 10 years. Office Manager Karen Gordon has been working with the business for decades. “The staff knows our patients and how to give great customer service,” said Karen. “We feel our dedication to good patient care, quality service and products have continued to help our practice grow and thrive.”
Forsyth Family Eye Care’s new location has allowed the practice to also expand the eyewear line. “With the rise of the Internet, eye care has changed dramatically,” said Dr. Appanaitis. “There are times when cutting corners to save a few dollars makes sense, but, as a wise man once said, beware of bargains in life- preservers, parachutes and eyewear.”
This is particularly true when it comes to products related to your health and well-being, such as eyewear and prescription eyeglasses. Ultimately, saving a few dollars isn’t worth the peace of mind you get when you buy quality products from a healthcare provider you trust. Forsyth Family Eye Care stands behind its eyewear and contact lenses, and has experienced staff members who help patients select the correct type of frame for their face and lifestyle.
Forsyth Family Eye Care is now located at 5305 Robinhood Village Road, in Winston-Salem. For more information or to make an appointment, call 336.924.9121, or visit the website at ForsythFamilyEyeCare.com for more information.