What's that flying around me?
A Look Into Floaters
Many of us have heard of friends who experience floaters in their vision.
But is seeing floaters something dangerous that one should worry about?
Read on to find out more!
A person who experience floaters in their vision would describe floaters such as dots, lines or even cobwebs that floater or drift around in their field of vision.
Floaters are a common occurrence that's not dangerous and can occur in any age group. Nonetheless, such symptoms may be more prevalent in people over the age of 40 years or a person with short-sightedness.
Why does it form?
Floaters in eye are usually formed due to the jelly like substance in our eye; vitreous slowly degenerate and becomes clumpy. These ‘clumps’ are knows as our floaters.
Light rays enter our eyes and hit on these clumps, forming shadows on our retina.
Factors attributing to floaters
Floaters of onset in middle age may frequently be related to Posterior Vitreous Detachment (PVD).
PVD happens in everyone mainly due to degeneration.
It is not a sight threatening and does not require any medical attention.
It occurs when the vitreous membrane separates from the retina layer and mostly detaches without any complication.
On the other hand, floaters that occur in younger population may be caused by the shape of one’s eye. Nearsighted people tend to have longer eyeball, which in particular may experience floaters due to the increased length of the eye. This causes more changes in the vitreous, leading to more floaters.
While most floaters are usually harmless, an increase in floaters may be an indication of retinal changes such as retinal hole, tear or detachment. Retinal detachments are painless, and sometimes the only sign or symptom can be floaters or accompanied with flashes of light.
Are there any treatments for floaters?
There is no treatment for floaters unless they are caused by a retinal hole, tear or detachment. Retinal detachments are considered as medical emergency and would require immediate medical attention.
Floaters cannot be prevented, especially after middle age, but caring for your eyes from young can reduce the risk of developing conditions such as cataracts and myopia, both of which may lead to floaters.
What is the next step of action?
It is recommended for a person with floaters to go through routine checkups with their optometrist. This is especially important for those who experiences new or increase floaters and should definitely go for an examination to rule out chances of possible retinal changes.
At KJ, we are able to assess whether the floaters that you see in your eyes are possibly sight threatening or not. If it is serious enough, it will warrant a referral to the eye specialists for further investigation.
To check whether your eyes are healthy, do book an appointment with us today!