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4 Reasons You're Suddenly Seeing Floaters 

Mar 15, 2024
4 Reasons You're Suddenly Seeing Floaters 
Are you suddenly noticing floaters in your vision and wondering how or why? Uncover some of the reasons behind these visual disturbances in our latest blog. 

Have you been noticing little squiggly lines or specks drifting across your field of vision? If you’ve been going about your day and these disturbances are getting in the way, don’t panic. You’re not alone! These common distractions are known as floaters, and there are many reasons they develop. We’ll help you discover where your symptoms came from. 

At Ophthalmology Associates of Bay Ridge in Brooklyn, New York, Elias Aliprandis, MD, Irene Rusu, MD, and our highly experienced team are here to dispel any concerns, diagnose your symptoms, and help improve your vision overall. 

In the meantime, if you’re wondering why you’re suddenly seeing floaters, we can give you four reasons why this might be happening.

1. Age-related changes

There are many joys of getting older, but floaters aren’t one of them. As you age, the gel-like substance called vitreous in your eyes starts to shrink and become more liquid. This natural aging process can cause tiny fibers within the vitreous to clump together, casting shadows on the retina and creating floaters. 

Although floaters are especially common in people over the age of 50, they can also appear when you’re younger due to factors like nearsightedness, eye injuries, and certain medical conditions. 

2. Posterior vitreous detachment (PVD)

Another common reason floaters start to form is because of posterior vitreous detachment (PVD). This condition occurs when your vitreous humor, the gel-like substance filling the space between your lens and retina, pulls away from your retina. 

When this happens, it tugs on your retina’s surface, leading to flashes of light and the sudden appearance of floaters. So, if you’ve been seeing these visual disturbances accompanied by flashes of light, blurry vision, or loss of peripheral vision, it’s time to reach out to our team. 

3. Eye trauma or surgery

While eye injuries may not always be as immediately obvious as other physical injuries, they’re just as prevalent and can present their own unique issues. Whether you experience a sports injury, accident, or surgery, trauma to your eye can cause bleeding and inflammation that can lead to floaters. Consider the following issues: 

Types of trauma

Blunt force trauma, penetrating injuries, or surgical intervention like cataract surgery can result in floaters. 


Floaters can also appear after eye surgeries due to inflammation, bleeding, or changes in your vitreous humor. 

4. Eye conditions and diseases

Floaters can also pop up due to other eye issues or health conditions lurking beneath the surface. These issues can range from mild to more serious, and our team can help you find the answer. Reasons for your visual discomfort may be caused by:. 

Retinal tears or detachments 

Be on the lookout for a retinal tear, which is like a small rip in the back of your eye or a retinal detachment, when your retinal pulls away. These conditions could be the culprits behind your floaters. 

Diabetic retinopathy 

If you have diabetes, you could be at risk of developing diabetic retinopathy, a condition characterized by damage to the blood vessels in your retina. This ultimately leads to floaters.

Whether you develop floaters from age, eye trauma, inflammation, or an underlying condition, they can occur for many reasons and leave you with more questions than answers. While they may not always be a cause for concern and could very well fade away, it’s always better to be one step ahead of any underlying problems by consulting with our team. 

If you’re ready to give your eyes the attention they deserve, click here to set up an appointment with our team of experts today.