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Flashing Lights in Eyes

Flashing Lights in Eyes

Sometimes, our retina suffers from some trauma or damage, and this causes us to see flashing lights. Though it is an alarming phenomenon, we should wait for a few days before panicking. This is something that afflicts everyone, and in most cases, it simply fades away after a couple of days.
Rahul Thadani
Last Updated: Mar 17, 2018
If you see flashing lights, you need to observe and study the regularity and intensity with which it is happening. Usually, this is nothing to be alarmed about, and everyone experiences these at some point or the other. However, if the condition persists for a long time, it could be an indication of some permanent damage to the retina.
These lights are referred to as eye floaters, among doctors and medical experts. They appear as tiny spots, flecks, or cobweb-like shapes, that follow our line of vision, no matter where we look. The size of these flashes vary from time to time, and some of them are just tiny, barely visible spots, while sometimes, they take the form of giant vision-obstructing flashes.
Causes of Flashing Lights

There are a few well-known reasons for these flashing lights, and any of them could be the culprit in case of a serious condition.
Vitreous Detachment: The gel-like fluid that is present inside our eyes is known as the vitreous, and it can sometimes get over-thinned. This usually happens with age, and as a result of this, the vitreous actually shifts away from the retina, thus leading to either a lack of vision, or an obstructed vision. This vitreous detachment happens to everyone as they approach 60 years of age, but some people go through it earlier due to some external trauma. The effect this has on the individual is that he/she sees eye floaters and flashes of light in their line of vision, especially when they move their eyes fast.
Tear in Retina: This usually accompanies vitreous chamber detachment from retina. In most cases, retinal tear is the direct consequence of some external trauma, and the symptoms are accompanied by visible traces of debris or blood. Maintaining good methods of eye care and protection can help curb this problem to a certain extent. If you have suddenly started seeing flashing lights at night, you should be aware that it could be a retinal tear.
Eale's Disease: The exact causes of Eale's disease are unknown, but as a result of this, the individual suffers from inflammation of the retinal vessels and hemorrhages in the retina. These effects are quite difficult to cure, and can leave one's vision severely obstructed. Eale's disease most commonly affects males between 30-50 years.
Uveitis: There are many common problems and disorders that can be classified as uveitis, but all these affect the back portion of the eye. This means that the retina, choroid, and optic nerves are susceptible to inflammation and damage. There are a large number of causes for uveitis, and this is something that takes some time to cure.
Entopic Phenomenon: This is a phenomenon that results in a person observing flashy lights right after staring at a bright object like the sun, a bulb, or a tube-light. Some people mistake it for a medical disorder, but this is in fact a harmless phenomenon that occurs as a result of white blood cells (WBCs) in the capillaries of the retina.
The most common symptoms of this problem include seeing white spots or bright spots wherever one looks, unnatural watering of eyes, intense headaches or migraines, and blurred vision. All these symptoms can be cured over time by visiting an ophthalmologist. He will examine your eyes, study your medical history, and then suggest some suitable form of treatment. In some cases, an individual may require laser surgery to fix the problem, but in most scenarios the condition simply fades away after a few days. If you have been experiencing this problem for more than a few days, you must take notice and visit a doctor. It must not be taken lightly, as ignoring it could lead to serious and permanent damage. You must observe the phenomenon for a few days, and note everything you can, before deciding your next step.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is solely for informative purpose and not intended to replace the advice of a medical expert.