Every once in a while, a tiny speck might float into your field of vision. These floaters are often harmless, but sometimes, they could be signs of a severe illness. Several conditions could be responsible for these spots, so it’s essential to understand a little more about them. Here’s what you need to know about eye floaters.
Although floaters seem like shapes swimming in front of your eyes, they are actually inside the organ. They are little clumps of gel that form in the viscous liquid of the eye. These clumps then cast shadows on the retina that appear as floaters to you. Often they are nothing to be concerned about, but they could also point to a severe health condition.
Diabetic retinopathy is a diabetes complication that damages the blood vessels in the eye. Fluid then leaks out of these vessels, appearing as floaters or resulting in blurred vision.
These floaters mostly show up in the advanced stages of retinopathy. If there’s a lot of blood vessel damage, the bleeding could completely block your vision. Scar tissue could also form, causing the retina to detach. A detached retina can quickly lead to blindness if not attended to immediately.
Floaters resulting from diabetic retinopathy will also be accompanied by weight loss, recurring infections, and fatigue.
Most people will experience floaters once they hit 50. If you notice this condition at a younger age, there’s cause for concern. Persistent floaters showing up in more youthful individuals could be a sign of severe illness and should be attended to by a doctor.