By Oregon Retina Center
March 09, 2015
Category: Eye care

Floaters and FlashesIf you notice new floaters or flashes in your vision it might just be time to see your Medford, OR eye doctor.

What are floaters and flashes?

A floater is often characterized as a spot or speck that appears along your field of vision; however, they can take on other kinds of shapes including circles or webs. These specks are actually floating inside the eye, casting a shadow on the retina. What you see these floaters in your field of view you are actually seeing their shadows.

You may also experience flashes lights in your vision. These flashes often look like lightning, as they flash quickly and then go away. Flashes may come and go for many weeks or even months.

What causes floaters and flashes to occur?

Floaters are often a common occurrence in people who’ve reached middle age. This is because the vitreous gel that surrounds the eyes will either become thicker or start to shrink, causing clumps or strand-like floaters in the eyes. Flashes also become more common as we age and occur when the vitreous gels rubs against or pulls on the retina.

When should I see my Medford, OR eye doctor about these problems?

While experiencing flashes or floaters now and again can be normal, if you experience an increase in either of these issues then it’s time to see your Medford, OR eye doctor right away. An increase in flashes could mean that you have a torn or detached retina, which requires immediate medical attention.

See your Medford, OR ophthalmologist right away if you experience any of these symptoms:

  • One large floater or a sudden increase in the amount of floaters
  • If you experience multiple and persistent flashes of light
  • If you notice vision loss or problems with your vision

How are floaters and flashes treated?

How your Medford, OR eye doctor treats this problem will depend entirely on the condition that is causing it. Even though flashes and floaters aren’t always serious, an eye exam will help us determine if there is any damage to your retina.

If there is a tear in the retina, laser surgery or freezing therapy can be recommended for repairing the damage.

If you are noticing changes in your vision or experiencing new or more prevalent floaters or flashes then you need to schedule an appointment right away with your Medford, OR eye doctor at Oregon Retina Center. 

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