Eye floaters are small moving spots that appear in your field of vision. They may be especially noticeable when you look at something bright, such as white paper or a blue sky.
Eye floaters can be annoying, but they generally don't interfere with your sight.
Occasionally a particularly large eye floater may cast a subtle shadow over your vision. But this tends to occur only in certain types of light.
Most of the time people learn to live with eye floaters and ignore them. And they often improve...
Every 2 to 4 years if you are age 40 to 54. (Starting at age 40,
presbyopia is likely to develop.)
Every 1 to 3 years if you are age 55 to 64.
Every 1 to 2 years if you are age 65 or older.
Your eye doctor may also suggest that you get exams more often just to check for refractive errors.
If you are at risk for or have signs of eye disease, you may need complete eye exams more often.
Eye diseases and refractive errors include:
Age-related macular degeneration.
For people who have diabetes, experts recommend a yearly eye exam.
For adults who are at risk for glaucoma, see these glaucoma screening recommendations.
After reviewing all of the research, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) concluded that more evidence is needed to find out if the pros outweigh the cons of routine visual acuity screening in older adults.2
American Academy of Ophthalmology (2005).
Comprehensive Adult Medical Eye Evaluation, Preferred Practice Pattern. San Francisco: American Academy of Ophthalmology. Available
U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (2009). Screening for Impaired Visual Acuity in Older Adults. Rockville, MD: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. Available online: www.ahrq.gov/clinic/uspstf09/visualscr/viseldrs.htm.
Primary Medical Reviewer
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Christopher J. Rudnisky, MD, MPH, FRCSC - Ophthalmology
August 2, 2011
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
August 02, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
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