Eye Floaters: Symptoms, Causes And Treatment

You may start to see white fragments when you look at the sky or floating particles of color while looking into a black wall. Sometimes, these indicate that you have eye floaters. Although these are usually harmless, they sometimes indicate that you are suffering from retinal detachment and need to see your doctor STAT.

What Are They?

Eye floaters are thread-like strands inside your eye that makes you see spots and particles. They move when your eyes do and settle below the line of sight when you are immobile. They are, however, invisible when you try to focus on them.

These are accumulated proteins of the vitreous gel that blocks light and casts a shadow on your retina. They are also permanent and only removable by surgery.


This is an eye condition that naturally appears as you grow older. It is also prevalent among near-sighted people and those who have undergone cataract surgery. Other times, it develops due to a history of eye inflammation, explained the American Academy of Ophthalmology. They are more pronounced when you stare at a white canvass or a pitch-black background.

In some instances, floaters emerge when you have small hemorrhages in your eyes. They may, however, disappear once the blood is absorbed.

They also appear when your vitreous gel depletes. It pulls away from the retina causing bits of debris in your vision and may sometimes look like cobwebs.


Generally, eye floaters are harmless. If you, however, see them more often and are associated with a loss of peripheral vision or flashes of light, this may indicate that you are suffering from a retinal detachment. This is a medical emergency since this could lead to blindness when left untreated, informed National Eye Institute.


Some eye floaters cause eye strain and interfere with your vision. They can be removed by eye surgery. This procedure, however, is not required when it is a mere discomfort and does not signify retinal detachment.

According to the US National Library of Medicine, when the doctor recommends surgery, he will remove the eye floaters and replace them with saline liquid.