When Should I Be Concerned Of Floaters?

If you’ve ever experienced the development of little dots in your vision that tend to follow where your eye leads, you may have a condition known as “floaters.” Floaters can develop for a variety of reasons, and aren’t always an indication of a serious problem. At Richens Eye Center, Dr. Sharon Richens encourages patients who have floaters to have a physical eye examination completed to rule out any serious concerns that may need to be addressed.

What are floaters?

Floaters are areas in one’s vision that may be distracting to the individuals who develop them. These areas may manifest themselves as squiggly lines, strings, webbing, or spots. Floaters are caused by small fibers within the vitreous in the eye that project shadows onto the retina. This results in shadows that are called floaters. They may occur and disappear for patients, and are not always a sign of something serious. However, having an evaluation with an eye physician is important to ensure a proper diagnosis and treatment if needed.

When are floaters a more serious problem?

While floaters are common and often not an issue, it is important to speak to an eye doctor if you have noticed a sudden increase in the number of floaters in your vision, or if you are experiencing other additional symptoms such as flashes in your vision, loss of peripheral vision, or changes in your eyesight. This may be a sign of retinal detachment that often requires immediate attention.

Who is at a risk for floaters?

Floaters can occur at any stage and at any age, but is often seen in patients who are in their late adult years. This is because of age-related changes to the vitreous that naturally occur over time. There are other causes of floaters that patients may need to be aware of, including inflammation in the back of the eye, bleeding of the eye, torn retinas, eye surgeries, or the use of certain eye medications. Any patient wo has been diagnosed with diabetic retinopathy or has other coexisting issues such as trauma to the eye and complications of cataract surgery may be at a higher risk of developing floaters.

Call Richens Eye Center today to learn more about floaters

Dr. Sharon Richens provides “vision for life” for patients in and around the communities of St. George, UT and Mesquite, NV. If you are interested in learning more about conditions such as floaters, or to undergo a routine annual eye examination, contact one of our three practices today by calling (435) 986-2020.

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