Charles Bittel III, O.D., Inc.

Charles Bittel III,O.D.,Inc. Newsletter


February 2015
Charles Bittel III, O.D., Inc.


Happy belated New Year! We've successfully made it through another year-end and are finally getting our heads above water. We'd like to sincerely thank all of you who came to see us with your 2014 benefits, flex-spending accounts, and anyone else who was able to make it in for your and your family's eye care needs. We also very much appreciate our patients' patience during these last few months if it took us a little longer than usual to get you in for an appointment, help you in the office, or get your glasses back to you in a timely manner. We're back to the point now where we should be able to get you in for same week or even same day appointments. At least until Spring Break :)

As we steam ahead into 2015, Spring will be here before we know it so in the spirit of planning in advance, we wanted to discuss allergies in this month's newsletter. If you know you will be suffering during the Spring allergy season, the time to start preparing your immune system to deal with the allergens is now! So whether you suffer from sinus allergies, ocular allergies, or both, hopefully you will pick up a tip or two to help you through this year's allergy season.

And for you contact lens wearers, you'll find some exciting news on a very interesting new product later in the newsletter.

Thank you again to all of you for entrusting us with your eye care needs. And if you still don't follow us on Facebook, click the link below and Like us! 



Dr. Charlie Bittel (Junior)
Dr. Chuck Bittel (Senior)
Dr. Joo Chi
and Staff

Like us on Facebook


Find us on Yelp


In This Issue

We are no strangers to allergies in Yorba Linda. If you don't suffer from allergies, there's a good chance that someone in your family does. And lately it seems like every year has been labeled the "worst allergy season on record" around here. Many people experience allergy symptoms year-round, but Spring is the classic allergy season. And it is rapidly approaching. So what can you do to arm your immune system against this potentially miserable time of year?

Act now! Because it appears that "seasons" have officially been replaced by year-round heat with a few weeks of cold and a few days of rain thrown into the mix, traditional Spring allergies are showing up in the middle of Winter. Trees are already sprouting leaves, flowers are already blooming, and pollen counts are already up. (yes, that's an actual website) already has the allergy level in the mid-9's out of 12 in the 92886 zip code. So once again, if you have a history of Spring allergies, start taking your medication now. If you have prescription allergy medication, consult with your prescribing physician first, but do it sooner rather than later. If your physician has recommended the over-the-counter route for you, pick up your Claritin, Zyrtec, or Allegra today and begin your routine. If you experience ocular itching that is not relieved by oral medications, we typically recommend picking up Zaditor (ketotifen fumarate) and starting that twice a day for a week or 2, and then dropping it down to once a day for maintenance purposes. And of course, read the inserts of all of the above listed medications before using for the first time and do not use if there are any contraindications or if your primary care physician has recommended against the use of OTC allergy medications. But the take-home message is: start you allergy medications now, and be consistent with their use for the duration of your typical allergy season. They are generally most effective when taken consistently.

And a few more notes on ocular allergies. If your eyes are itchy, especially if they are very itchy, there is a high probability that you are experiencing ocular allergies. They might also be a bit red and a bit watery or even mucousy. But if they itch, think allergies. If your eyes are very red, if there's a lot of crust in the morning, if they are painful, if there's any blurry vision, if you're a contact lens wearer and something doesn't seem right, do not assume allergy. If you have any of the above symptoms you should be seen by a physician as soon as possible. If you are diagnosed with ocular allergies, you will likely be prescribed an eye drop to treat ocular itching. Quite frequently, oral allergy medications or nose sprays are so diluted by the time they reach the ocular surface, they do not help with ocular allergy symptoms. The main class of ocular allergy drops are dual-mechanism anti-histamine/mast cell stabilizers. These are available in both prescription (Patanol, Pataday, and Lastacaft are probably the most often prescribed) and OTC which is the above-mentioned Zaditor. Zaditor used to be Rx but went OTC quite a few years ago. If you are prescribed an ocular allergy drop and have good insurance coverage, I usually recommend filling the prescription. If you are prescribed one of the above Rx drops and the pharmacist tells you that it will be $120 for a tiny bottle of drops, you might want to ask the prescribing physician if Zaditor is an acceptable substitute. If you are prescribed allergy drops, the same rule applies. Start them as soon as possible and be consistent with their use throughout the entirety of your allergy season!

And don't be afraid to look into alternative/homeopathic/natural ways to manage your allergies. I've personally had great success with taking a teaspoon of honey that comes from local producers during the height of my allergy season. These can usually be found at local farmer's markets, or even at Stefanos! Just be safe and check with your primary care physician or allergist before starting any allergy regimen, prescription, OTC, or otherwise. 


New product alert!

Johnson and Johnson (Vistakon/Acuvue) has launched a new contact lens aimed at the "natural beauty" market. The lens is called Define and it's an exciting new alternative in the color contact lens arena. It's been available in the Asia market for 6-7 years and is now finally being released in the U.S. You'll see a lot of marketing for Define in the coming months, and we'll be one of only about 40 offices in Orange County with trial lenses in the initial launch phase. We should have the trial lens sets within a few weeks. 

The goal of the Define lens is to enhance the natural color of your eyes. They are not meant to change the color of your eyes like most of the other color contact lens brands. Again, they are targeting the "natural beauty" market. The Define lenses will be single-use (daily disposable) so they are perfect for occasional wearers and very healthy for everyday wearers. 

Check out the website, play around with the different designs on different eye colors, or better yet, call us for a sample set and see for yourself how they make your eyes pop!

(Samples may be limited in availability due to the early launch of this product. If we don't have your power in stock we will put you on a wait list.)

Acuvue contact lens pricing:

Johnson and Johnson (Acuvue) is still enforcing its unilateral pricing policy (UPP). This means that big box chains and online retailers cannot sell Acuvue products for less than a specified amount. Therefore the majority of the time, our prices on Acuvue products are exactly the same as what Costco and online retailers are charging. And on year supply orders of 1 Day Acuvue Moist and 1 Day Acuvue TruEye, our prices are now actually cheaper than what is available from big box stores and online. We also do not charge tax, we have free shipping on year supplies or 6 month supplies of daily disposables, and have a much more flexible return policy than any outside retailers. And we really really appreciate your business :) 


About Us

Dr. Chuck Bittel (Senior) has been practicing in Yorba Linda for over 30 years. His son, Dr. Charlie Bittel III (Junior) has been practicing in Yorba Linda for the last 9 years and took over the practice in December 2012. The business has continued to grow through referrals of family and friends so we are always honored to see your loved ones and feel free to give us a Yelp if you see fit! We are also the first business in all of California to register with the new referral app GWIG (Go Where I Go)!


Learn more about Dr. Bittel Senior and Junior and about their practice on their website and Facebook page. 


For appointments call 714-779-8521 or email:



Charles Bittel, O.D., Inc.
20399 Yorba Linda Blvd.
Yorba Linda, California 92886