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As your comprehensive local eye care provider, David W. Stemley, O.D., aims to help you achieve and maintain optimal eyesight and health for a lifetime. Our exceptionally-talented and experienced optometrists in Carlsbad use cutting-edge diagnostic techniques to identify and treat your vision problems at the earliest stage possible to prevent them from harming your eyesight.

The following are some of the most commonly-treated vision problems by Dr. Stemley's office in Carlsbad.

Refractive Errors

Refractive errors are the most common causes of blurry vision caused by irregularities in the shape of the eye or the cornea (the lens on the front surface of the eye). Refractive errors occur when irregularities in the cornea prevent your eyes from bending light correctly, leading to blurry or distorted vision.

Refractive error is a collective term to denote numerous vision problems due to irregularities in the shape of the cornea. The following are the various types of refractive errors:

  • Myopia/ Nearsightedness: Distant objects appear blurry but nearer objects are clear.
  • Hyperopia/ Farsightedness: Closer objects appear blurry but distant objects are clear.
  • Astigmatism: Generally blurred and distorted vision, regardless of the distance, due to wavy irregularities in the corneal shape. 
  • Presbyopia: Age-related farsightedness usually afflicting patients over 40 due to the gradual hardening of the cornea.

Glasses and contact lenses correct your eyesight and restore visual acuity, but you need to go for regular eye exams to update your prescriptions. In some cases, Lasik surgery can provide permanent corrections to your eyesight, restoring 20/20 vision.

patient after seeing her optometrists in Carlsbad

Amblyopia/ Lazy Eye

Amblyopia, commonly referred to as “lazy eye,” is a condition wherein the brain fails to process inputs from one eye, eventually relying on only one eye for all visual inputs. Amblyopia usually occurs in young children, but it must be diagnosed and treated as soon as possible.


Glaucoma refers to a collection of vision problems occurring due to high pressure within the eyes. The continued pressure on the optic nerves eventually leads to weakening vision, making it the leading cause of blindness in patients over 60 years of age.

Most people don’t notice the signs and symptoms of glaucoma until it has caused significant damage to the eyesight. That’s why annual eye exams are crucial to identify irregularities in the internal eye pressure, thus diagnosing and treating glaucoma at an early stage.


Cataracts are one of the leading causes of blindness even though they’re highly treatable. A cataract is a protein-based cloudy formation on the lens of the eye. If left untreated, the cloudy formation continues expanding until you suffer from complete loss of vision.

You must identify cataracts at the earliest stage possible. Early symptoms of cataracts include cloudy/hazy vision and loss of vivid colors. If caught early, cataracts can be treated with specialized glasses and contact lenses. If allowed to progress, you may need advanced cataract surgery.

patient with cataracts needing optometrists in Carlsbad

Comprehensive Eye Care in Carlsbad

David W. Stemley, O.D., is a part of the Total Vision eye care network, making it one of the most reputable optometric centers in Carlsbad. We hold ourselves to a higher standard of eye care than most centers in the region, using the latest technologies to provide incredibly accurate early diagnosis of vision problems. If you want to maintain optimal eyesight and health for a lifetime, join us for reliable diagnosis and treatments. See the best optometrists Carlsbad has to offer.

David W. Stemley, O.D.

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View Updated COVID Policy

COVID-19 Update:

Dear Patient,
We are pleased to announce that the California Department of Public Health has given us permission to resume full scope eye care, including preventative care and postponed exams.

At Total Vision Care, the health of our patients, doctors, and associates is our top priority. We are taking precautions to ensure the safety of our community.

Health and safety protocols we are taking:

  • All visits are by appointment to ensure social distancing. This includes picking up of glasses/contact lenses, adjustments on glasses, and ordering new products.
  • Patients are asked to arrive to their appointment alone and notify us from your vehicle once you arrive (a parent/guardian may accompany a minor and a family member/caretaker may assist a senior). Please call the office and someone will greet you at the door.
  • Prior to your entry a team member will take your temperature, provide you with hand sanitizer and ask you a series of questions regarding your health and possible COVID-19 exposure. Our team members are all subject to these same screening protocols.
  • All doctors, associates, and patients must wear masks.
  • Our team sterilizes all equipment and surfaces after every patient and disinfects all frames prior to placing them back on display.

What we ask of patients:

  • If you have any of the following symptoms, you must reschedule your appointment for a future date: Fever, fatigue, cough, shortness of breath, gastro-intestinal symptoms (diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, or stomach pains), recent loss of smell or taste.
  • Please bring a mask which must be worn in our facilities at all times.
  • Your patience in adhering to new safety protocols.
  • Please feel welcome to communicate any questions that you have to your Total Vision Care practice associates.

In addition, we will continue to monitor CDC, WHO, governmental, and optometric associations guidelines and make changes as appropriate to protect our community. Thank you so much for your continued support of our practices. We appreciate your patience throughout this process and for trusting us with your eyecare needs.

The Total Vision Care Family of Eyecare Professionals