Many Americans experience eye floaters to some degree.
While some may consider the condition just a part of everyday life, for others with more acute symptoms, the results can be debilitating and significantly lower their quality of life.
Here are some of the most common eye floater warning signs you should be on the watch for. If you associate with any of these conditions and your vision is impaired because of it, you should seek consultation with your doctor soon.
MIDDLE AGE– As you age, it is natural for the vitreous, the jelly-like substance that fills your eyeballs to soften and liquefy as it pulls away from the interior surface of the eyeball. When this happens, the vitreous can clump together and pass across the eye, casting a shadow upon the visual field in the form of stringy, translucent floaters.
Because of this, there can be a marked development of floaters as middle-age approaches.
NEARSIGHTEDNESS – Those who are myopic (nearsighted) have an extended length of the eye which causes more changes in the vitreous humor, leading to an increase in floaters. A recent development of myopia may be a precursor to the development of eye floaters.
EYE RELATED TRAUMA- Severe eye injuries hold the potential to change the structure of the vitreous humor. Any changes to the vitreous humor, which houses the fluid that composes eye floaters, leads to an increased production and release of floaters.
POST-CATARACT SURGERY COMPLICATIONS– Friction or traction upon the retina, which can occur during cataract surgery, can lead to an increase in seeing “dots” that are actually blood leaked from the retina into the eye floaters themselves.
*As retinal tears can easily lead to blindness, it is critical that patients experiencing dots in their field of vision contact their eye care physician as soon as possible.
DIABETIC EYE DISEASE – Also known as diabetic retinopathy, it affects nearly 80% of people who have had diabetes for 20 years or more and is the leading cause of blindness for people ages 20 to 64. Vision becomes impaired when macular blood vessels in the back of the eye burst as a symptom of the disease, which in turn, produces floaters.
UVEITIS- the uveal tract, which is the layer of tissue between the inner and outer layer of the eye, contains the majority of the eye’s blood vessels. When the tract is affected due to inflammation blood vessels may leak into the vitreous fluid which can produce eye floaters.
People suffering from uveitis can expect to experience floaters and schedule an appointment with their doctor if vision becomes obstructed.
Be sure to talk to your doctor about treatment options as well as any concerns you may have regarding any underlying issues that may be causing or related to your eye floaters.
Regardless the cause of the eye floaters that are affecting your quality of life there are treatment options available to you, including non-invasive laser floater removal.