Causes Of Light Flashes In Eyes: Symptoms & Treatment Options

Light flashes in your vision, is an indication that the brain is interpreting erroneous stimulation of the retina or the optic nerve as light. Manifestation varies from individual to individual – some see an arc of light, others see a light-bulb switching on and off quickly.

Following are some of the causes of light flashes in the eyes:

  • Retinal detachment or tears: In case the flashes are seen only in one eye, it could be as a result of retinal detachment or a tear, in which case you need to consult your ophthalmologist immediately.
    This is a very severe cause of flashes of light in your vision, and needs to be examined as soon as possible. Neglected, it results in considerable loss of vision in the affected eye.
  • Vitreous detachment: A more likely cause is vitreous detachment, especially if you are nearsighted, have experienced eye inflammation, or have gone through a cataract surgery. A family history of retinal detachment raises your chance of vitreous detachment. The condition occurs when the clear internal gel thickens or shrinks, making it unconnected with the retina.
  • Migraines: Migraines are a very common cause and occurs as a consequence of decreased blood flow to the brain. Migraine is characterized by constriction of arteries in the brain, followed by their dilation.
    This is known to cause sensory disturbances, such as light flashes, which may or may not be followed by headache. These flashes of light last for 20 minutes and have recognizable shapes and colors.
  • Head injury: Blow to the head or injury from a car accident triggers retinal tear, resulting in flashes of light. If the retina does not tear, flashes come from other injuries to the eye.
  • Vitreous hemorrhage: Vitreous hemorrhage or bleeding causes light flashes. Bleeding is due to trauma, inflammation, diabetes or near-sightedness.
  • Retinal artery occlusion and glaucoma, uncontrolled diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and multiple sclerosis are important causes.

Symptoms: Light flashes in vision is an indication that the brain is interpreting an improper stimulation of your retina or optic nerve as light. The sensation of flashes in the vision differs from individual to individual, with some people seeing an arc of light, or blobs of light, and others likening it to a bulb switching on and off rapidly.

Treatment Options For Light Flashes In Eye

Confer with your health care provider / ophthalmologist and decide what treatment regimen works best for you, depending up on your cause. You may need a few tests and investigations carried out to ascertain the cause.

  • Typical Vitrectomy i.e. the excision of vitreous humor and replacement with a synthetic solution and Laser Vitreolysis i.e. burning of each floater individually with a laser is usually recommended.
  • Torn retinas need laser treatment, while retinal detachment needs surgical intervention.
  • Vitreous detachment does not need any treatment and is a fairly common occurrence in old people. Nonetheless, those having vitreous detachment should watch for signs of retinal tears.
  • Diabetes mellitus needs proper and timely treatment with regular follow ups. Make sure the serum glucose levels are always normal.
  • Hypertension needs optimal management as well.
  • Those who suffer from migraine headaches need to manage the case effectively. Stress management and steering clear of the triggers is essential to preventing attacks.
  • Also, confer with your ophthalmologist and start supplements which promote eye health – vitamin A and fish oils.

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