Sensitivity of eyes to flashing lights

My eyes are very sensitive to flashing lights - for example I'm always the first person to notice that a fluorescent tube is about to fail because I see it flickering when other people can't.

When I'm driving at night, I perceive LED rear lights on cars as being a series of unconnected dots when I scan my eyes quickly across the scene. Evidently, many, if not all, LEDs are actually flashing at a high rate which most people don't perceive.

It almost seems as though I have a higher "refresh rate" than most people. How unusual am I? What is the physiology of it?

EDIT: I suppose what I find most fascinating is that at times when I see a trail of flashes, the spacing between them is remarkably consistent. This implies to me that there is an incredibly accurate timing mechanism somewhere in my visual system that is taking "snapshots" with clockwork regularity - probably between 50 and 100 samples per second. I'd like an insight into this "clock" and why mine seems to be faster than anyone I've ever met.

This similar to what I perceive:

Photosensitivity and Seizures

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For about 3% of people with epilepsy, exposure to flashing lights at certain intensities or to certain visual patterns can trigger seizures. This condition is known as photosensitive epilepsy.

Photosensitive epilepsy is more common in children and adolescents, especially those with generalized epilepsy and with certain epilepsy syndromes, such as juvenile myoclonic epilepsy and epilepsy with eyelid myoclonia (Jeavon’s syndrome). It becomes less frequent with age, with relatively few cases in the mid-twenties.

Many people are not aware they are sensitive to flickering lights or to certain kinds of patterns until they have a seizure. They may never go on to develop epilepsy with spontaneous seizures. They could only have seizures triggered by certain photic (light) conditions.

Many other individuals who are disturbed by light exposure do not develop seizures at all, but have other symptoms, such as headache, nausea, dizziness, and more. They do not have epilepsy.

Read expert consensus from an Epilepsy Foundation-convened group on photosensitive seizures, published in 2005. (Harding, G., Wilkins, A., Erba, G., Barkley, G.L., & Fisher, R. (2005). Photic- and Pattern-induced Seizures: Expert Consensus of the Epilepsy Foundation of America Working Group. Epilepsia, 46(9), 1423-25. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1167.2005.31305.x.)

Anyone have light sensitivity all the time, even when you aren't experiencing a migraine?

Obviously when I am experiencing a migraine, bright lights can make the situation worse, and sometimes can even be the trigger that causes the migraine in the first place. However, I have extreme sensitivity to light all the time even when I am not in the headache zone.

I work in an office with harsh fluorescent lighting and my eyes get all watery throughout the day and the strain is very painful. It also makes me really tired to be exposed to bright lighting for extended periods of time. If I leave my desk to spend time in a room with dimmed lighting, I will start to wake back up again. I also wear sunglasses outdoors and while I am driving, year round, even on cloudy days. Almost all of the lights in my house are dimmable and I keep the lights dimmed pretty much all the time. I also keep the brightness turned down on my phone and computers almost as low as they will go most of the time. When I look at my husbands phone it is painful to my eyes because he keeps the brightness up high.

I do have bright, baby blue eyes which I know is a contributor. I am just ridiculously sensitive to bright lights. It is kind of inconvenient at times, especially at work since it is difficult to escape from the lighting there. I would love to increase my tolerance to bright lighting.

I am wondering if my migraines are merely a symptom of some kind light processing disorder or something. Does anyone else have this problem and what have you done to help yourself?

Balamuthia mandrillarisis is an ameba that lives in dust and soil. Signs and symptoms of Balamuthia include fever, nausea and vomiting, light sensitivity, headache, stiff neck, and headaches. There are various diagnostic tests and medications that treat Balamuthia infection.

Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelids. Acne rosacea, staphylococcal bacteria, allergies, sensitivities to makeup or contact lens solutions, head lice, or other conditions may cause blepharitis. Symptoms and signs include itchy eyelids, burning sensation in the eyes, crusting of the eyelids, light sensitivity, red, swollen eyelids, loss of eyelashes, and dandruff of the lashes and eyebrows. Proper eyelid hygiene and a regular cleaning routine controls blepharitis.

Do You Have Problems with Light and Glare Sensitivity? Meet Leann Gibson, Who Has Been There Too!

Leann Gibson was born and raised in the small community of Wainwright, Alberta, Canada. Leann and her husband Steve are professional chefs who “fell in love over a buffet line,” as they like to say. Steve also serves in the Canadian military thus, says Leann, “Moving is a way of life, so our home is truly where the heart is.”

Leann’s vision loss journey began in June 2012, when she awoke one morning with a sense that something was “not right” and had seemingly changed overnight. Coincidentally, she was working in an optometrist’s office as an optometric assistant at the time. At work later that morning, Leann was overwhelmed by a cascade of visual changes, including cloudy fragments circulating in her visual field, an extreme sensitivity to light, and an inability to distinguish faces.

After many consultations with ophthalmologists and neuro-ophthalmologists throughout Canada and the United States, Leann was finally diagnosed with autoimmune retinopathy in February 2014.

Autoimmune retinopathy is a rare eye disorder in which auto-antibodies damage the retina, causing progressive vision loss. An auto-antibody is a type of protein produced by the immune system that is directed against one or more of an individual’s own proteins. It is thought that in autoimmune retinopathies, the auto-antibodies attack proteins of the retina, causing retinal deterioration and disease.

Visual symptoms associated with autoimmune retinopathy include decreased central and/or peripheral vision night blindness poor color vision extreme sensitivity to light and photopsias, which are shimmering or flashing lights. You can read more about Leann’s long and circuitous path to diagnosis at As I was Sleeping on the VisionAware website.

Maureen Duffy: Hello Leann. Thank you very much for agreeing to share your story with our readers. As you know so well, it’s one thing to read a description of autoimmune retinopathy, and quite another to actually live with these symptoms, especially extreme light sensitivity. Can you describe to our readers what it’s like?

Leann Gibson: The best comparison I can think of would be looking through the static on a television screen. The movement is constant and ever-changing, and my field of vision is encased in strobe-like flashes of light. How well I see very much depends upon how much light is present. Inside my house (which I have fashioned into a “cave”), my symptoms are more subdued. Stepping outside, the world becomes an intense flashing white landscape that is void of color and detail.

MD: It’s likely that many VisionAware readers have light sensitivity as well. Can you tell us some techniques and adaptations you’ve devised to cope with sunlight and glare? And as a Canadian who lives in “snow country,” it must also be difficult to cope with reflected light and glare from snow and ice.

LG: One thing for sure is that you cannot escape light, so my most helpful aids are my prescription tinted sunglasses. It would be impossible for me to function without them. The tint of the lenses allows the world to once again have some definition and color – and even the flashing light is muted.

Working as an optometric assistant, I was able to gain first-hand experience with all of the different lens tints that are available. Each color option has varying attributes for a range of lighting conditions. These include contrast, color balance, and the percentage of light that is transmitted through the lens.

The most valuable piece of advice I can give is to find an eye doctor’s office (either an ophthalmologist or an optometrist) or a local blindness or low vision agency that has these options and see what works best for you. Don’t forget to ask to try them outside in natural light, because you want to be able to evaluate them in real-life conditions.

For me, I find that a gray tint works best for sunny days when glare is at its most intense, versus a brown tint I use on cloudy days because it heightens contrast and helps me see better. Another benefit of the brown tint is how well it works in brightly-lighted stores. Brown helps to diminish glare and isn’t so dark that it compromises the visual acuity I have left.

When I am venturing out on my own, I make sure always to wear a hat with a deep wide brim and carry a small umbrella. Shielding the light from above – whether it is from the sky or inside a store – makes a huge difference for me.

My most recent discovery has been the use of “fitover” sunglasses. My sensitivity to light has increased during the past few months, so even my prescription sunglasses are no longer dark enough. These sunlenses are meant to “fit over” regular glasses, but I figured I would try them over my sunglasses instead. What a difference they made!

By “doubling up” on the tint, I found the necessary relief to continue life outside my home. They come in a variety of colors and styles, and after testing out a few, I found that gray lenses work best for me. I am always on the hunt for “fitovers” and discovered that I can purchase them from almost any retailer that sells sunglasses.

MD: What strategies and techniques have you learned to use for indoor lighting?

LG: It has been a balancing act: learning how to block the natural light coming in the windows and figuring out which lighting fixtures and bulbs work best. I choose fixtures with cream-colored shades that provide a softer light concentration and I use soft white low-wattage bulbs.

In the kitchen and bathroom, I use a 60-watt (or equivalent) frosted spotlight bulb because it shines the light downward without being too harsh. I struggle with having either too much light or not enough light, so I’ve purchased smaller lamps that I have spread around the house to help even out the dark and light areas. On the flip side, I have night blindness, so for my safety I use nightlights in outlets and keep a flashlight handy.

As far as blocking out my windows, I really like room-darkening blinds and drapes. There are so many size options that I have been able to use them all over the house. For the windows in my front doors, I applied a stick-on window tint that lets in some light but is easier on the eyes.

MD: Have you worked with low vision specialists, orientation and mobility specialists, and vision rehabilitation therapists during the past several years as your vision loss progressed? If so, what did each profession bring to the learning process for you?

LG: I had a low vision assessment and a consult with a mobility instructor at CNIB a few months back. The low vision specialist went over all the tools that could assist me with daily life. It really helped me realize that I could make some tasks easier with the right magnifier, for example.

However, the one that “blew my hair back,” so to speak, was a monocular telescope. This device enabled me to see clearly in the distance for the first time in years! I hope to buy one soon.

My time with the mobility instructor was spent outside, testing the monocular and trying different sunlens tints. She gave me some instruction regarding sidewalks and things to pay attention to, such as where the grass ends, because this means a curb is probably coming. This may seem obvious, but when you have a hard time distinguishing the curb, this knowledge can do wonders for your confidence – not to mention your safety.

Afterward, I had an undeniable boost of positive emotion and I didn’t feel as alone as I did before. I understood that there were many individuals thriving with vision loss, and if I tried hard enough, I could be one too!

MD: Can you tell us what techniques and strategies you’ve learned to use for safe outdoor travel? Do you use a cane or a guide dog?

LG: When I plan to go somewhere on my own, I prepare a backpack with a few essentials. It is important to cover all my bases so I feel confident that I can handle whatever comes my way. I always pack extra sunglasses, a wide-brimmed hat, a folding umbrella, my cell phone, identification, and extra cash.

Leann’s travel essentials: a folding umbrella, wide-brimmed hat,
an assortment of extra sunglasses, and a cell phone

One of the biggest lessons I have learned as a visually impaired person is to slow down. So I keep to the inside of sidewalks, away from traffic, and I pay attention to how other people move. For example, I can tell that a significant step-down is ahead or which door to go into if I walk slowly and pay attention. If I come to a busy uncontrolled intersection, I will simply walk down to one that is less busy so that I feel comfortable crossing.

With my photosensitivity, one of the most difficult challenges I face is how long it takes for my eyes to adapt to different light sources and lighting levels, such as going from outside to inside or vice versa. With my photopsia, or flashing light, this symptom goes into overdrive and envelops my entire visual field. As it thunders away, I am held frozen in my tracks.

This poses a significant safety issue, so when I come out of a store, for example, I move to the side, out of the flow of traffic. I close my eyes, take a few deep breaths, and wait until I can recover. Inside the door of my house, I have placed a stool that I can sit on and let the recovery happen.

I have found that asking for help is an important tool. Many bus drivers have helped me get where I needed to go! In the winter months it is harder to travel on my own, so I wait for warmer days or when someone can assist me. I find the anti-slip spiked shoe covers work best on snow and ice, and it is so important to wear the proper winter attire.

I learn something each time I go it alone – it is very much a work in progress. As my vision deteriorates, I know I will need to employ the help of a guide dog or cane, but for now I am making my way in the world.

Also, I have come across something that – if it works – may help with my photosensitivity quite a bit. It is called a partial occluder contact lens. The center of the contact lens that covers the pupil is a gray tint that is available in a variety of percentages of light transmission. My doctor is checking it out for me, and I’ll be trying them out very soon. I’ll be glad to report back to our readers about how this potential solution works out for me.

MD: We look forward to your update, Leann, and we thank you very much for sharing your hard-won expertise with our readers. If readers have additional questions, helpful hints, or resources, please feel free to share them in the comments section.

What are floaters?

Floaters look like small specks, dots, circles, lines or cobwebs in your field of vision. While they seem to be in front of your eye, they are floating inside. Floaters are tiny clumps of gel or cells inside the vitreous that fills your eye. What you see are the shadows these clumps cast on your retina. You usually notice floaters when looking at something plain, like a blank wall or a blue sky.

As we age, our vitreous starts to thicken or shrink. Sometimes clumps or strands form in the vitreous. If the vitreous pulls away from the back of the eye, it is called posterior vitreous detachment. Floaters usually happen with posterior vitreous detachment. They are not serious, and they tend to fade or go away over time. Severe floaters can be removed by surgery, but this is seldom necessary.

You are more likely to get floaters if you:

o are nearsighted (you need glasses to see far away)
o have had surgery for cataracts
o have had inflammation (swelling) inside the eye

Shedding Light on Photosensitivity, One of Epilepsy's Most Complex Conditions

Certain individuals are born with special sensitivity to flashing lights or contrasting visual patterns, such as stripes, grids and checkerboards. Because of this condition, their brain will produce seizure-like discharges when exposed to this type of visual stimulation.

Routine EEG testing, meant specifically to identify patients with this abnormal predisposition, includes exposure to strobe lights. At times during these tests, the EEG discharges can be accompanied by body jerks. If the individual is highly photosensitive, or if the visual stimulation is particularly strong and persistent, a seizure can occur. Affected people may not be aware of the risk until an EEG is performed or until they have a seizure when exposed to certain light stimulation.

Fortunately, this does not happen too often. Many additional factors are required to trigger a photically or pattern-induced seizure in photosensitive subjects.

Who is Affected?

Photosensitivity, which is often associated with epilepsy, is a condition determined by gene transmission. Therefore, it may be present in several members of one family and is more active early in life. Children and adolescents are more prone than adults to have an abnormal response to light stimulation, and the first light-induced seizure almost always occurs before age 20.

Girls (60 percent) are more often affected than boys (40 percent), although seizures are more frequent in boys because they are more likely to be playing video games. Video games often contain potentially provocative light stimulation.

The condition, formally known as photosensitive epilepsy, is best treated with antiepileptic drugs. There are, however, noted cases of individuals with no previous evidence of epilepsy who only have seizures provoked by light stimulation. That being the case, these individuals must be followed carefully for the possible development of epilepsy, which technically means having unprovoked seizures. But until then, seizure prevention may be achieved by simply trying to avoid exposure to strong light stimuli.

What Causes Light-Induced Seizures?

Photosensitivity is an intricate medical problem. Scientists have been able to identify many of the triggers, but the mechanism that makes the brain hyper-excitable when the retina gets stimulated in a certain way remains poorly understood. The key features of a provocative stimulus, however, are outlined in a consensus reached by a group of international experts gathered by the Epilepsy Foundation. These are:

  1. The flicker of the light source, and the “frequency” at which the light changes. In other words, how many times the light flashes in a second. Generally, flashing lights between the frequencies of five to 30 flashes per second (Hertz) are most likely to trigger seizures. In order to be safe, the consensus recommends that photosensitive individuals should not be exposed to flashes greater than three per second.
  2. The intensity of the light source, meaning how bright it is, as well as the “contrast” between light and dark during the flicker. The consensus recommends the contrast between alternating dark and bright images be not greater than 20 candelas per square meter (a technical measure for brightness).
  3. The area the light stimulus occupies in the visual field. This is important because it actually determines how much of the brain gets stimulated. For instance, in the case of television viewing at a distance of about nine feet, the consensus recommends the area of the flashing stimulus on the screen be not greater than 25 percent of the total area. This also explains why most affected individuals can prevent the photosensitive reaction by simply covering one eye (monocular vision).
  4. The pattern of the image. Static or moving patterns of discernable light and dark stripes have the same effect as flashing lights because of the alternation of dark and bright areas. The danger depends on how many and how contrasted the stripes are in the visual field. The consensus recommends no more than five pairs of stripes if they are moving within the field of vision and no more than eight pairs if they are static. About 30 percent of individuals sensitive to lights are also sensitive to patterns.

There are other factors involved, as well. One is the viewer’s distance from the light source because it directly affects the field of vision. For instance, going back to the example of television viewing, the closer the person gets to the screen, the greater the risk. More of the visual field is occupied therefore, more of the brain gets stimulated.

The second factor is color. Certain colors are critical in particular, the so-called saturated “deep” red. Within the visual spectrum, this color is the one with the longest wavelength and it can be easily eliminated by wearing appropriate optical filters (blue lenses). However, filtering may also drastically affect visual perception. For instance, it is important that drivers, if wearing special filtering glasses to gain protection against possible seizures, do not loose the ability to recognize the color of signals at intersections. On the other hand, these devices may be helpful for passengers riding in cars and during other everyday activities not requiring sharp color discrimination. Pairs of quickly-changing colors, particularly red and blue, are also known to be more provocative than others.

The most popular example of photosensitivity occurred in Japan on the night of Dec. 16, 1997. Close to 700 children were admitted to hospitals, mostly because of seizures that occurred while watching the popular cartoon Pokémon. The cause of this seizure epidemic was a very short (four seconds) rocket-launch sequence, with flashing red and blue fields occupying the whole screen, changing at a frequency of 12.5 per second. This experience taught us all these factors are interdependent and can have powerful consequences when they occur in combination.

In addition to distance and color issues, associated factors include sleep deprivation, fatigue from playing video games too long, and acute alcohol withdrawal. All of these can facilitate the occurrence of catastrophic reactions, such as seizures.

Who’s at Risk and How Often?

About 3 to 5 percent of the 2.7 million Americans with epilepsy (approximately 100,000 individuals) are photosensitive, as indicated by an abnormal response to strobe lights during an EEG. The proportion of light sensitive patients is higher among those who have generalized epilepsy, as well as a genetically determined condition. And photosensitivity is even higher (close to 90 percent) in those with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, a type of generalized epilepsy that mostly affects adolescents.

The amount of photosensitive individuals among the general population who had no prior seizures but have the potential for having seizures when exposed by chance to certain light stimuli is more difficult to ascertain. They usually have not had EEGs performed.

Earlier studies done in Europe sampling the EEGs of “normal” school children and adolescents found abnormal responses to strobe lights in 7.6 to 8 percent of those between ages 1 and 15, but in only 1 percent of those between ages 16 and 21. Later studies, probably using stricter selection criteria, found the incidence of abnormal responses in comparable populations of normal school children to be 1.3 percent in England and 1.4 percent in Brazil. No such studies have ever been conducted in the United States.

Additionally, two important studies conducted by England’s and Denmark’s Air Force , looked at the EEGs of “healthy” young males between ages 17 and 25 applying to become pilots. The studies found abnormal responses to strobe lights in 0.35 percent of English men, and abnormal responses in 2.2 percent of Danish men. Assuming America’s incidence of abnormal response to light stimulation among the general population (between ages 5 and 17) is also about 1.5 percent, it can be extrapolated that there are about 800,000 photosensitive people in this country who are not aware of the risk.

One notable population-based study was conducted in 1993 in Great Britain, specifically to estimate the number of seizures triggered by video games in individuals who’d never had a seizure before. The risk of “new onset” light induced seizures was 1.2 per 100,000 in the overall population, but 5.7 per 100,000 between ages 7 and 19.

This data is important because it indicates how infrequently actual seizures occur despite the high number of photosensitive individuals. However, the data only reflects Great Britain’s risk level at the time of the study. Conditions may be different at other times, in other countries or when a highly provocative program is simultaneously broadcast to a large susceptible audience.

What Can be Done About the Problem?

There is no problem for individuals who are not photosensitive. But for those who are, especially for those who do not know it, there are potential environmental threats everywhere: theaters, dance clubs, rock concerts, the Internet, the street and at home.

The most common environmental hazards are natural sunlight, artificial lights (especially flickering, malfunctioning fluorescent lighting), cathode ray tube television screens and patterns from Venetian blinds, rolling escalators, striped walls and striped clothing. And although there is no epidemiological data to support this statement, the most frequent triggers of photically-induced seizures nowadays are probably video games. This is not surprising because video games are in the hands of the most susceptible population, and also because video games contain strong visual stimuli to make them more attractive.

In the United Kingdom and Japan, the television industries have voluntarily adopted guidelines, similar to those contained in the consensus drafted by the Epilepsy Foundation, limiting the use of visual stimuli that could be potentially hazardous to susceptible viewers in broadcasted programs. Automatic analyzers review the programs “online” before airing them and point out segments transgressing the safety limits. The Epilepsy Foundation believes the same criteria should apply to video games, but this type of scrutiny has not yet been implemented for them. One of the reasons for this is because new video games allow players to set up the visual experience to their liking. Therefore, they can create unexpected risks for themselves.

Video games on DVD are currently rated for moral content (sex, language and violence), but not for safety. At present, no recommendations, guidelines, standards, regulations or rules address the issue of photosensitivity and the prevention of possible environmental hazards in the United States.

In fact, the 1990 Americans with Disability Act requires most workplaces and places serving the public, including theaters, restaurants and recreation areas, to have fire alarms that flash and ring at the same time for the hearing impaired. The Epilepsy Foundation strongly recommends the flashing rate be kept under 2 Hertz with breaks between flashes, a provision that is usually implemented but not enforced.

What Parents and Consumers Can Do?

The Epilepsy Foundation’s professional advisory board has issued general recommendations for television viewing that include the following:

  1. Watch television in a well-lit room to reduce the contrast between the screen light and background light
  2. Reduce the brightness of the screen
  3. Keep as far back from the screen as possible (minimum five feet)
  4. Use remote controls to ensure proper distance from the television is maintained
  5. Use small screens. When watching large screens, increase the distance from the screen.

For video game playing, in addition to the above precautions, the professional advisory board recommends the following:

  1. Players should not play if they are tired, especially if they are sleep deprived
  2. Avoid excessive use of alcoholic beverages
  3. Take frequent breaks from the game and look away from the screen every once in a while.
  4. If strange or unusual feelings develop, turn the game off. If players start feeling their bodies jerking, cover one eye with one hand and immediately look away.

Monocular vision (covering one eye) is a most useful practice because it works in most circumstances and still allows the subject to see. It is important to know that just closing the eyes does not prevent photosensitive reactions because the red-tinted light filtering through the eyelids will be just as provocative, if not more.

The greatest concern for parents of children who actively play video games is to know whether they are photosensitive or not. If there is a history of epilepsy in the family, especially a form of generalized epilepsy (which is more likely to be associated with photosensitivity), or if a close relative, like a sibling, had or has light-induced seizures, it may be wise to consult a doctor. It only takes a simple EEG test to find out if the subject is at risk and if special precautions are warranted.

Nowadays, video games contain a generic warning alerting the player of the risk of seizures. Hopefully, in a not-too-distant future, games will carry a statement specifying whether their visual content is unrestricted or if they have been built in compliance with the specifications outlined in the Epilepsy Foundation’s consensus statement. The Foundation and its professional advisory board believes there is a market for “safe” video games, and that parents and consumers will appreciate the opportunity to make informed choices.

All in all, photosensitivity is a relatively infrequent and benign condition, akin to but not synonymous with epilepsy. It raises intriguing medical and public health issues when it comes to identification of the condition and prevention of its consequences.

A large segment of affected individuals are unaware of the risks while environmental hazards that can cause seizures by chance stimulation are ubiquitous in modern society. Methods of prevention and remedies are available and should be tailored to the specific needs of the single individual, and this requires serious involvement by the treating physician. It also requires constant self-surveillance and advocacy.

The Epilepsy Foundation has taken a leading role in fostering knowledge about the condition and disseminating information to consumers and interested professionals. If consumers have questions, or if events like seizures occur, they are encouraged to contact the Epilepsy Foundation for guidance.

Editor’s Note: Giuseppe Erba, M.D., is a professor of neurology and pediatrics at the University of Rochester, as well as a former member of the Epilepsy Foundation’s professional advisory board.

Reprinted with permission from EpilepsyUSA
©2006 Epilepsy Foundation. All rights reserved.

Central Serous Retinopathy and Flashing Lights

I'm a 46 year old male, and last week, following a fluorescein angiography, was told I had Central Serous Retinopathy in my right eye. The symptoms were an oval field of vision (yellowish brown in color) within which my vision is blurred or distorted.

This has not got any better, and five days ago, I started seeing flashing lights in the same eye, which come and go, but sometimes are quite strong (Have headaches too). I'm concerned that this might be something more serious (i.e. retinal detachment?) or could this just be a symptom of the CSR condition?

I wear glasses all the time, as I am shortsighted, but have not had any previous problems with my eyes.


Thanks for your Question

Central Serous Retinopathy is a localized detachment of neurosensory retina in the macular area due to defects in Retinal Pigment Epithelial Cells. This space between separated retina and underlying layer is filled with fluid.

You can consider it as a mild and localized form of retinal detachment. flashes of light or what we call it Photopsia occur due to stimulation of photoreceptors during separation of neurosensory retina from the underlying layers. It can be associated with it. In case the intensity if photopsia increases and associated with severe loss of vision, you should visit your doctor as soon as possible.

Another symptoms of it are blurred vision, alteration in color and contrast sensitivity, metamorphopsia (Distorted Vision) and micropsia (smaller image than actual size).

This disease is self-limited, which means it will go by itself and usually it lasts from 3-6 months but sometimes can stay for a year.

Complete recovery can occur with vision returns to its normal status but sometimes mild color and contrast defects can persist.

Laser photocoagulation can be used to speed the recovery time and also to decrease the incidence of recurrence but it has no effects on the final visual outcomes. We usually wait for 4 months before we start laser treatment .

Dry Eyes

In an individual with fibromyalgia, the symptoms of dry eyes can range from mild to severe. Fibromyalgia tends to dry out the mucous membranes of the mouth and nose as well as the eyes.

This condition is called “sicca” and can make it virtually impossible to wear contacts due to the discomfort.

Some experts say that tear production could be decreased in around 90 percent of individuals with fibromyalgia and could be worsened by nutritional deficiencies as well as several medications.

Flash of light in right eye when i blink

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