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Eye Floaters

Eye Floaters

Eye floaters are small moving spots that appear in your field of vision. They may look like black or grey specks, cobwebs or specks that drift about when you move your eyes. Most eye floaters are usually caused by age-related changes that occur as the jelly-like substance (vitreous) inside your eyes becomes more liquid. Whenever this happens, microscopic fibers within the vitreous tend to cluster together and emit tiny shadows on your retina, which you may see as eye floaters. Many people tend to learn to live with eye floaters. They often improve over months or years. Very rarely, do benign eye floaters become troublesome enough to consider treatment. Sometimes, these eye floaters may also be a sign of a more serious problem. Hence, one should seek immediate medical attention if there is a sudden increase in the number of eye floaters, especially if the eye floaters are accompanied by flashes of light or a loss of side vision. Symptoms:

Eye floaters can appear in many different sizes, such as:

 • Squiggly lines

• Black or grey dots

• Cobwebs

• Ring shaped

• Threadlike strands, which can be knobby and semi-transparent

• Eye floaters move as the eyes move and appear to dart away when you try to focus on them Causes: The black compartment of your eye is filled with a gel like substance called vitreous humor. As you age, the vitreous region of the eye and the innumerable fine collagen fibers shrink and become shred-like. These shreds accumulate in the vitreous causing a change in the amount of light that reaches the retina of the eye.

This change causes the symptoms of eye floaters. Risk factors: Factors that may increase your risk of floaters include:

• Nearsightedness • Eye trauma • Age over 50 • Complications from cataract surgery • Inflammation in the eye • Diabetic retinopathy When to seek medical attention? You should contact an eye specialist if you notice: • Many eye floaters than usual • Flashes of light • Darkness on the sides of your vision • A sudden onset of new floaters

 

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