Flashes, Floaters and Retinal Tears

You may sometimes see small specks or clouds moving in your field of vision. These are called floaters. You can often see them when looking at a plain background, like a blank wall or blue sky. Floaters are actually tiny clumps of gel or cells inside the vitreous, the clear fluid that fills the inside of your eye.

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While these objects look like they are in front of your eye, they are actually floating inside it. What you see are the shadows they cast on the retina, the layer of cells lining the back of the eye that senses light and allows you to see. Floaters can appear as different shapes, such as little dots, circles, lines, clouds or cowebs. The appearance of floaters may be alarming, especially if they develop suddenly. You should contact your eye doctor right away if you develop new floaters because this may be an indication that the retina is tearing or detaching.

When the vitreous gel tugs on the retina, you may see what looks like flashing lights or lightning streaks. The flashes of light can occur intermittently. If you notice the sudden appearance of light flashes, you should contact Midwest Eye Professionals immediately.

Contact us if you would like to learn more.