What Are Flashers & Floaters?

Floaters, which are generally benign, are small spots that can be seen in your line of vision, and seem to weave in and out. They can be various different shapes and sizes, from strings, cobweb shapes and circular shapes. Floaters can be very annoying, and can often be very distracting and make concentration difficult for some. This condition is not always treatable, but you may be a candidate for treatment!

These floaters are actually tiny clumps of cells inside of the vitreous gel in the eye. Vitrous gel is a clear, gel-like fluid that fills the inside of the eye. When something grows or leaks into the vitreous gel, this creates what look like spots in the vision.

While these "objects" may seem like they are on the surface of eye, no amount of blinking or eye drops will get rid of them. They are in the interior of the eye, and require more complicated treatment to get rid of.

Flashes occur when the vitreous gel pulls on the retina. The retina cannot 'feel' the pull, it emits a flash of light when pulled on. Flashes look like flashing lights or lightening streaks in the vision. This sensation is similar to being hit in the eye and seeing "stars". These flashes can happen on and off for several months. The flashes will stop when the vitreous has completely pulled off from the back of the eye.  Usually, a floater results following this.

Flashes and floaters are more likely to occur the older we get, usually affecting those over the age of 45, but can occur in younger patients especially with nearsightedness. As we age, the vitreous gel changes over time, and begins to pull away and shrink from the retina causing a floater. This is a natural aging process of the eye and there is nothing that we know of that can stop this occurance, but at Total Eye Care Centers, we may be able to help you to reduce or rid yourself from of a bothersome floater. Give us a call at any of our convenient locations in Lawrenceville, Levittown and Newton, if you are experiencing these conditions to see if you are a candidate for this treatment.

 Normal VisionVision with Floaters

        Normal Vision                                               Vision with Floaters