She might have moved away from Traverse City for her undergraduate and optometry education, but Dr. Rebekah Noss Lynch knew she was bound to come back home. She has been back in Traverse City for more than 10 years now at Full Spectrum Eye Care, and loves having the opportunity to practice and raise her children here and take advantage of all Northern Michigan has to offer.

That’s a message we hear a lot here in Northern Michigan. And when you can do WHAT you love in the PLACE you love, “fortunate” is the feeling that comes next, says Dr. Lynch. An added bonus for her: She gets to practice alongside her dad.

Why are you passionate about optometry?

It sounds cliché, but what is cooler than helping someone see? One of my favorite moments as an optometrist is prescribing a child their first pair of glasses, or a teenager their first pair of contact lenses. Helping a patient with a second pair of glasses for their eight-hour workday at the computer or a pair for someone who loves to sew or read can be both enjoyable and very fulfilling.

What experiences have made you positive this field was your calling?

When I graduated and moved back to Traverse City, my dad had been in practice for almost 30 years. Working and collaborating together at Full Spectrum Eye Care for the past 10 years has made me so grateful that I became an optometrist and had the opportunity to work with him and with patients in this capacity.

Aside from working with my dad, forming relationships with patients and building their trust in me as their optometrist is something I really value about my career and the way I operate my office.

What is the most prevalent health issue you see in patients?

I am seeing more Diabetic Retinopathy in my office than I have in the past. As we all know, our nation is becoming less healthy, more obese, and therefore we are seeing an increase in diagnosed cases of diabetes. When a patient’s diabetes is uncontrolled, I can see that in their retina with bleeding and swelling, which can potentially cause permanent vision loss.

Featured in MyNorth Medical Insider. Read the full issue for more healthy tips.

What are three things patients at any age can do to promote healthy eyes?

  • Wear sunglasses. The sun can be extremely damaging to the eyes and can contribute to both cataracts and macular degeneration.
  • Eat a healthy diet. Dark leafy greens and orange peppers are really good for the health of the eye.
  • Check yearly, see clearly! Eye exams aren’t just if you need glasses or contacts. Many conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, brain tumors and many more can be detected during a routine eye exam.