Have you noticed little spots in your vision? If you have, you may have eye floaters. While they are typically harmless, they can lead to vision problems down the road. What’s important is that you understand what eye floaters are and if you are and if they are part of a larger eye disease.
What Are Eye Floaters?
An eye floater is a byproduct of aging that appears as tiny spots, strings, or cobwebs in your eye. Many people will develop them as they age. They are caused when the vitreous, the jelly-like substance found inside of your eye becomes liquid. When this happens, the microscopic fibers in your eyes can bunch up and create little spots and specks in your eyes.
Individuals who are at risk for eye floaters include those who are:
- Over 50
- Experiencing eye trauma
- Having complications related to cataract surgery
- Suffering from eye inflammation
While eye floaters are typically harmless, they could affect your vision. If you experience a sudden increase in eye floaters, see light flashes, or lose your vision – you should contact an Optometrist immediately.
What Are The Symptoms Of Eye Floaters?
There are several notable symptoms you may experience if you have eye floaters. The most common ones include:
- Small shapes in your eye that appear as dark dots or thread-like strings that float in your eyes
- Spots that appear to move when you try to focus on them
- Spots that are more visible when looking at a plain bright background
- Other small shapes, strings, and cobweb-like figures that seem to drift around in your eye
Your eye floaters won’t always cause severe problems beyond altering the way your eye looks. However, they can develop into more severe problems, including:
- Rapid development of additional eye floaters
- Strange flashes of light in the eye with the most floaters
- Peripheral vision loss
If you experience any of these symptoms, you need to contact an Optometrist immediately. Each of these symptoms could mean that you have a retinal tear, which if left untreated, could leave to severe vision impairment.
What Causes Eye Floaters?
You can develop eye floaters for a variety of reasons related to other eye diseases and conditions that you may have.
Here are a few of the most common causes of them:
- Aging. Most individuals will experience eye floaters as a result of aging.
- Bleeding in the eye. Eye bleeding can result from conditions like diabetes, blocked blood vessels, hypertension, and other injuries.
- Damaged retina. A torn retina can happen when your vitreous tugs on the retina, causing it to tear. If left untreated, a torn retina can lead to permanent vision loss.
- Eye surgery. Any medications that were injected into your eyes can cause air bubbles to form which will appear as shadows in your eye.
- Inflammation in the eye. This is typically caused by posterior uveitis as the result of inflammatory diseases, infection, and other conditions. Inflammation occurs when debris is released into the eye.
Optometrist – Eye Floater Specialist In The San Fernando Valley
The good news is that an eye exam often reveals the causes of eye floaters. At Dr. Barry Leonard & Associates, we can help treat your eye floaters. It’s important that you have your eye floaters thoroughly examined by an Optometrist to determine which treatment plan is best for you.
Dr. Barry Leonard & Associates offer a variety of eye care services to help you diagnose, treat, and overcome any eye conditions that you may have. Contact us today by phone at 818-405-9788 to book your next eye exam.
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