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What Are Floaters?

Floaters are a normal occurrence that is due to the natural aging process. Floaters can look like squiggly lines, floating dots, specks, or cobwebs in your field of vision. They seem to look like they are in front of the eye, but these are actually floating inside the eye.  Floaters are small clumps of gel or cells that are inside the vitreous. The vitreous is the substance that fills these eyes. What you are seeing when floaters are present are shadows that are cast on the retina. As we age, the vitreous starts to shrink slightly and detach from the retina, this is what forms the clumps within the eye. Floaters are not serious, and they tend to go away with time. If floaters are severe, they can be surgically removed. 

What Are Flashes?

Some people experience light flashes that look like heat waves or jagged lines. These can be in one or both eyes and could last up to twenty minutes. These flashes are caused by migraines. A migraine is a spasm of blood vessels in the brain. 

Who is at Risk?

There are some people who may be more prone to getting floaters and flashes than others. These: 

  • People who are nearsighted
  • People who have had cataract surgery
  • People who have had swelling inside the eye
  • People who are prone to headaches and migraines

Treatment for Flashes and Floaters

Most floaters and flashes are not serious and cause no problems. Sometimes, they can be signs of a more serious eye condition. If you notice any of these symptoms, contact Boston Vision right away:

  • You have a lot of flashes
  • You notice a lot of new floaters
  • A grey curtain covers part of your vision
  • A shadow appears in your peripheral vision

These could be symptoms of a torn or detached retina. This is a serious condition that can lead to vision loss. If you notice these symptoms, get your eyes examined by your Boston Vision doctor so they can make a diagnosis and treatment plan, if needed. 

Schedule a Consultation

Floaters and flashes are normal occurrences that cause no harm. But sometimes they can be a sign of a more serious condition. If you notice a lot of floaters and flashes or any loss of vision, then contact Boston Vision for an eye exam. To schedule an appointment at Boston Vision email us at help@bostonvision.com. You can also book an appointment online.

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