by Audra Anders for The Aha! Connection
I met Dr. Erick Smith while we were both students at Auburn University and we have remained lifelong friends. Fast forward and I now find myself in that stage of life where my arms are suddenly not long enough to allow me to read the fine print especially if the lights are dim. Erick had been taking care of my hubby’s vision needs for many years and I finally realized I might need to pay him a visit myself. Upon examination, I was quickly convinced that a simple pair of reading glasses would solve the problem and ease my growing frustrations with my vision.
Since my initial visit, I have gone through many pair of reading glasses and progressives and have had several prescription changes. I can assure you I wouldn’t go anywhere else but Briggs Vision Group…..they make sure this nerdy book worm can read clearly! Dr. Smith also watches a weird scar on my eye every year which gives me such peace of mind knowing that he is staying on top of all my vision needs. He recently educated me on the benefits of adding blue light protection to my glasses since I spend so much time on my computer and phone screens which produce light which is harmful to my vision. My sons don’t need glasses yet, however, I make sure Dr. Smith gives them each a thorough eye exam every year so any needs will be caught early.
In fact, everyone I know in Dunwoody goes to Briggs Vision Group for their vision care. From little kids to adults my parents age seriously…everyone I know! Peggy’s family included. After being a patient for many years, I had never had the pleasure of meeting the founding doctor of this great practice, so of course I jumped at the chance to have a casual conversation with both Dr. Smith and Dr. Briggs to discuss what makes Briggs Vision Group so special.
Dr. Judson Briggs, Dr. Erick H. Smith and Dr. Rebecca Garnier own and operate two beautiful private optometry practices in Dunwoody and Johns Creek. They believe that vision is one of the most precious gifts bestowed on humanity. Their shared mission is to provide superior eye care through innovative technology, a passion for excellence and unmatched quality and service for each patient that walks through their doors.
Dr. Briggs opened the business in 1984 in the very same building but, at the time, had only 1,200 square feet of office space and 2 staff members. Back then, the building that currently houses Panera Bread was Med First. When Med First went bankrupt in 1992, Briggs regrets not buying the building….it sold for $615,000! Other interesting 1984 facts…Walgreens was Brunos. First Watch was Beef-n-Burgundy. Novo was Pizza Hut.
Briggs Vision group has been steadily growing since. The office doubled its size in 1992 and then expanded again in 2005 and 2015. Dr. Briggs and Dr. Smith initially met at a conference in 1990 and became friends and business partners. Dr. Smith and his wife Dr. Christal Sellers Smith (also a Doctor of Optometry in the practice) have 4 boys who currently attend Wesleyan School and Providence Christian Academy. Dr. Briggs and his wife Tammy have four grown children. His daughter Rebecca Briggs Garnier is also a Doctor of Optometry in the practice and in 2015 earned the title of Young Optometrist of the Year. Other doctors in the practice are: Dr. Amy B. O’Neal, Dr. Mary Elizabeth Brice and Dr. Priyal Gadani.
Following are just a few reasons why Briggs Vision Care is so popular with their patients:
- They have convenient hours to accommodate any schedule…early mornings and Saturdays too
- They accept most types of medical and vision insurance
- Patients are often referred to their practice from all over the metro area for specially contact lenses fittings
- They have an incredible inventory of designer/fashion eyewear at competitive prices
- They focus on comprehensive eye care for the whole family
- Known for superior customer service…and a vast referral network
- They are known for their community involvement:
- They participate in a Special Olympics eye clinic
- They provide free glasses for missionaries at various area churches
- They serve a men’s shelter near the capital offering free eye exams and glasses
- They are active members in the Georgia Optometric Association and enjoy hosting externships for top Optometry schools around the nation. They mentor these students and teach them the business side of vision care.
Dr Smith and Dr. Briggs discussed the importance of children’s eye exams. They recommend predicting and slowing down issues sooner rather than later…so have your kids vision checked early! They have recently been focusing on myopia management. Myopia, also known as nearsightedness, is a visual condition that has affected millions of Americans. It is predicted that myopia will affect half of the world’s population by the year 2030. Many factors including genetics and lifestyle choices (such as screen time and extended near work) have been shown to increase myopia progression.
Until recently, there have been very few methods to help control or slow down progression. Contact lenses worn overnight, soft multifocal contacts and even certain eye drops have been used successfully in controlling this progression. Studies have shown that these methods have been successful in children as young as eight years of age. Controlling myopia can also help prevent conditions such as retinal detachments, glaucoma, and other ocular pathologies. The doctors at Briggs Vision Group have been very successful in treating many patients with these conditions. Please contact Briggs Vision Group today to learn if myopia management is a good option for your child or family member.
If you need vision care for your family, I highly recommend Briggs Vision Group. In fact, you may see me there if you pop in this week. I’ve broken TWO pair of glasses and lost my newest ones and I know they’ll take good care of me when I stop by for repairs and a new glasses order!
Briggs Vision Group
1637 Mt. Vernon Rd, Ste 100
Dunwoody, GA 30338
Hours: M-F 8:30a-5:30p & Sat 8:30a-1p
Briggs Vision Group Optique
10305 Medlock Bridge Rd
Duluth, GA 30097
Hours: M-F 8:30a-5:30p & Sat 8:30a-1p