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Eye flashes or photopsia can be caused by many conditions. Although flashes are harmless, they might indicate some serious eye issue which needs to be addressed immediately. Medical attention should be taken when flashes cause loss of vision and also small spots seem to float from one side to the other, thereby hindering the vision.
Migraines and very severe recurrent form of headaches which last for few hours to many days can cause visual symptoms. The light flashes look like zigzag lines, geometric patterns and sparkles when they occur with a migraine. Flashes might affect one eye or both and occur in the peripheral area of the vision. Light flashes sometime also occur due to ophthalmic migraine, a migraine without a headache.
Posterior Vitreous Detachment
The jelly like substance or the vitreous fluid fill the center of the eye and also gives it shape, is attached to the retina. With age and over time there is shrinking of the vitreous and it begins to detach from the retina. This is known as posterior vitreous detachment. In this the vitreous tugs or pulls on the retina, while the retina gets detached and stimulates it thus causing flashes to occur.
There is no known treatment for posterior vitreous detachment, through regular monitoring of the eye through eye checkups are helpful. Symptoms of this are similar to those of retinal detachment (condition in which there is permanent vision loss).
Retinal Detachment or Tear
Retinal tear and detachment also cause light flashes in the eye. This needs to be treated promptly. In case of permanent vision loss there is detachment of retina at the back of the eye, especially if the detachment takes place over the macula which is the main focus of the vision on retina. When the retina detaches from the eye, it loses the main source of nutrients. As there are photosensitive cells in the retina which are responsible for vision, the results of retina tear are severe.
Retinal damage occurs after trauma or as a complication from diabetes or posterior vitreous detachment. Vitreous gel tends to seep under the retina from the small crevices and holes formed by the retinal thinning. This in turn raises the sections and disconnects it from the eye. This can be corrected by laser treatment, cryopexy or an eye surgery.
A trauma like a hard blow on the head can lead the person to experience flashes of light. Also some medications can lead to toxic levels, like Digitalis can cause flashes of light. The symptoms of eye flashes also occur with macular degeneration, which is an age-related disease and in this the vision reduces gradually.
Between myopia or short sightedness and hypermetropia or farsightedness, the latter is less common. However, this does not make it any less important. Farsightedness or long sightedness refers to a refractive error in the eye lens that creates problems focusing on objects nearby. This is because the light entering the eye does not converge on the retina but does so behind the retina.
Long sightedness can be caused by a number of factors. Some of these are:
Structural problems with the eye
Some people are born with structural problems. This is one of the leading causes of long sightedness. These structural conditions include:
1. A cornea that is not steep enough
2. A short eyeball
3. A flattened lense
4. A thicker than normal lense
Long sightedness rarely affects children. This is a condition that becomes noticeable after the age of 40 in most cases. With age the lenses in the eyes become stiffer and do not curve normally. This is known as presbyopia.
As with myopia, hypermetropia is also triggered by genetic faults. If someone in your family suffers from this then chances are that you will too. However, the specific genes that transfer this condition from one generation to the next have not been discovered as yet.
Long sightedness is also triggered by underlying conditions such as diabetes, under development of a baby’s eye during pregnancy, orbital tumours and problems with the blood vessels in the retina.
Not being able to read a book clearly is one of the most common symptoms of long sightedness. Some of its other symptoms are:
1. Needing to squint to focus on objects
3. Pain or burning in the eyes
4. Fatigue caused by reading, writing or working on a computer
5. Red and watery eyes
Long sightedness can be correctly diagnosed only with a thorough eye examination. Hence it is essential to schedule one regularly. This becomes more important as a person gets older. If left untreated, it can lead to double vision which in turn can trigger two possible eye problems.
This is a condition where the eyes get misaligned and hence do not work in tandem. People suffering from this condition find their eyes focusing on two independent objects instead of seeing the same thing.
Double vision can make one eye more dominant than the other. This makes the muscles of one eye degenerate at higher rate than the other making it lazy. This is known as amblyopia. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Anything that enters the eye from outside and causes inflammation or irritation, or even an abrasion, among varied other problems, can be termed as a foreign body. This foreign body usually ends up having an effect on the conjunctiva or the cornea. While the cornea is the outer layer that protects the eye, the conjunctiva is the membrane that covers the white portion of the eye. Here are a few ways for understanding and treating the entry of foreign objects into the eye.
Symptoms: To begin with, one must understand the symptoms so as to recognise the problem. A feeling of pressure or discomfort will be experienced by the patient, who will feel as though something is preventing him or her from shutting the eye properly. At the same time, too much tear formation and pain in the eyes will also point at the entry of the foreign object while redness and bloodshot eyes are also a common sight at such instances. The patient may be forced to blink at more than the normal rate, while glares of light will create pain and discomfort.
Causes: There are many kinds of foreign objects that can enter the eyes including fine substances like saw dust, dirt, grime, dust, sand and even the dust of cosmetics. Also, eye lashes, dried mucus, shards of glass and metal particles may enter the eyes and create an emergency situation. When the wind sweeps debris up, it may fall into a person’s eyes and settle there.
Prompt Action: As soon as you feel like something has entered your eye and does not seem to be leaving it even after continuous blinking, then you will need to see a doctor in the Emergency Unit of your hospital. Do not rub your eyes at all, as the foreign object may cause cuts inside and lead to bleeding and other complications. You must take special care to notice whether or not the object in the eye is sharp and is preventing you from shutting your eye properly, in which case immediate medical intervention and diagnosis will be required.
Treating the Foreign Object: With the aim of removing this object, the doctor may administer anaesthetic drops before using a fluorescein dye to find out what kind of object has entered. A moist cotton swab will be used for removal and an antibiotic ointment will be prescribed for any cuts. Acetaminophen can treat the pain while a CT scan can investigate any intraocular object.
You can also use a wet cloth to rinse and remove the object at home, but blurry vision and pain must be taken to an ophthalmologist immediately. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions! In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
A sty is a tiny red bump in the eyes which looks like a pimple on the outer edge of the eye. This condition usually causes a lot of discomfort and a significant amount of pain. This pimple generally forms when the oil glands in the eyes get clogged with dirt and grime as well as excess oil, which created blockage due to the accumulation of bacteria. Too much tear production as well as swelling and pain are the most common symptoms of this condition, which must be shown to an ophthalmologist for proper diagnosis and treatment. Read on to find out the various ways in which you can treat this condition.
Well Cleaned Hands: Always ensure that your hands are properly cleaned and sanitised, as the hands can spread the maximum amount of germs and bacteria to your eyes. The hands are usually the most overworked part of the body which we use for doing a variety of tasks that involve touching, gripping, pulling, pushing and running them along a variety of surfaces. This causes a build-up of germs and bacteria on the hands which can easily get transferred to the face or the eyes, as one touches these areas constantly. So, it is important to keep your hands clean at all time to ensure that the sty does not get worse.
Avoid Makeup: When you are suffering from a sty, it is imperative to keep your eyes clean and clear. For this, you must avoid using makeup until the sty gets fully cured as the makeup may irritate the eye and the particles may further block the pimple. Also, you may want to avoid wearing contact lenses unless the sty gets better, and stick to glasses instead so that there is nothing in the eye that will obstruct its treatment.
Warm Washcloth: This treatment will soothe the eye and help in sanitising the area with the warmth of the washcloth. Also, this kind of treatment for a few minutes every day will ensure that the swelling also reduces. Further, one must ensure that the washcloth is clean and lint free so that no dirt escapes into the eyes.
Avoid Squeezing: One must avoid squeezing the sty as this action can make it even worse. Further, if the pimple bursts, the liquid or pus within can easily infect the eye and the area around it. The sty should be allowed to drain out on its own, or you can visit an eye doctor who will help in draining it out.
Getting professional help to treat the sty with medication and ointments as well as medical procedures is always more helpful. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!