People say they look like cells, squiggles, amoebas, dots or cobwebs, and the second you try to focus on them, they dart away. They’re called floaters, and they move with your eye, which is why you can’t seem to get a good look at them. Frustrating and strange, yes. But harmful? Usually no.
These small blobs are made up of vitreous, which is the gel-like material in the back of the eye. When you see them, you’re actually seeing the shadows of them cast against your retina.
If you’re nearsighted, you’re more likely to experience them. Aging eyes also seem to create more floaters, and they are more frequent after eye surgery or any kind of inflammation. People with diabetes are more prone to having floaters.
They are typically of no urgent concern if you have experienced them consistently and without pain. If you experience an increase of floaters, or sudden blurred or loss of vision, seek medical attention immediately to rule out retinal tears, detachment or other serious conditions.
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