What are clear eye floaters?
Clear eye floaters are the small specks or clouds moving in your field of vision. When looking at a plain background, like a blank wall or blue sky, clear eye floaters are more noticeable. Clear eye floaters can appear as different shapes such as little dots, circles, lines, clouds, or cobwebs.
In actuality, clear eye floaters are tiny clumps of gel or cells inside the vitreous, the clear gel-like fluid that fills the inside of your eye. What you see are the shadows they cast on the retina, which is the layer of cells lining the back of the eye that senses light and allows you to see. This is why clear eye floaters are also called retinal floaters occasionally. Treatment for eye floaters varies depending on the intensity and longevity of clear eye floaters, and floater removal by surgery is rarely recommended.
What causes clear eye floaters?
When people reach middle age, the vitreous gel of the eye may start to thicken or shrink, forming clumps or strands inside the eye. The vitreous gel that thickens may pull away from the back wall of the eye, causing a posterior vitreous detachment. This is a common cause of clear eye floaters. Floater removal and treatment for eye floaters may be unnecessary, but clear eye floaters and post vitreous detachment (PVD) is more common in people who:
- are nearsighted
- have undergone cataract operations
- have had YAG laser surgery of the eye
- have had inflammation inside the eye