January 08, 2014 - Bill Olds, a member of Oakland County Sportsmen's Club in Independence Township, has enjoyed archery and shooting all his life, but nowadays has more difficulty focusing on the sights.
Dr. Todd Staniszewski adjusts a lens for Bill Olds. Photo by Phil Custodio
(click for larger version)
Keeping them sharp is Dr. Todd Staniszewski, an eye doctor at Advanced Eye Care of Michigan.
The doctor offers eye care specifically targeted at shooters.
"When guys who have been shooters their whole life, target shooting and hunting over open sights without a scope, reach 50 years old and beyond, they have trouble focusing on the sights and the target, and their scores go down," Staniszewski said. "Your vision changes as you get older. This enables them to see the sights better, improve their scores, and enjoy shooting for longer."
They enjoy the shooting sports and don't want to give it up, he said.
"But they don't have their vision where it needs to be," he said. "It's a relatively inexpensive fix to get their scores where they need to be, one more tool they can use."
He asks patients to first come in to the office at 7117 Dixie Highway in Independence Township for a regular eye exam to check for cataracts and make sure the eyes are healthy. Then they return for a shooter's examination, bringing their pistol or rifle to the office where the doctor can test different lenses to determine which are clearest and most comfortable.
"Especially so they can see the front sight," Staniszewki said. "No one can focus on three things at the same time, but younger eyes can refocus faster. If you can't focus back on the sights quickly, that's the trouble."
It's one of many specialist applications they offer, he said.
"I do this all the time for people working on the computer, organists in church, in the band, working on quilts, miniature trains. Hobbies have different vision requirements," he said.
Staniszewski is a hunter and target shooter, and saw the need for this service.
"It can be frustrating," he said. "They tell me other doctors tell them to use their reading glasses. That doesn't work. I have experience. I know what is needed, and what works in different situations."
No one lens can do the job for all circumstances – a lot of eye doctors don't understand that, he said.
Staniszewki lives in Clarkston with his wife and sons, all hunters. For more information, call Advanced Eye Care of Michigan at 248-620-1100.
Phil is editor for The Clarkston News. He is a veteran of the first Iraq war, having served in the U.S. Army.