What causes floaters?
Floaters occur when the vitreous, a jelly-like fluid that fills about 80 per cent of the eye and helps it maintain a round shape, slowly goes from a smooth, thick texture to being more fluid. This usually happens with age. As the vitreous shrinks, it becomes somewhat stringy, and the strands can cast
tiny shadows on the retina. These are known as floaters.
In most cases, floaters are part of the natural ageing process and simply an annoyance. In fact, most people will experience eye floaters at some time in their life (after 40 years of age). They can be distracting at first, but eventually tend to become less bothersome as they settle. Usually, eye floaters will go away after a few months, either because they have drifted out of view or because you no longer notice them. Although floaters themselves aren’t dangerous, in rare cases they can be a symptom of a sight-
threatening condition. More serious causes of floaters include infection, inflammation (uveitis),
haemorrhaging, retinal tears and injury to the eye.