Floaters are relatively transparent, vague, usually curved objects that you may occasionally see floating in your field of vision. They are seen best when looking at a white piece of paper, blue sky, light colored ceiling, or wall. They sometimes look like cobwebs, worms, circles, lines, clouds, dots, or specks. Eye movement makes floaters more visible as they swirl about like seaweed in the ocean surf. Floaters may seem to “run-away” when you try to look at them.
Flashes, on the other hand, are momentary streaks of light, and could indicate a serious problem such as posterior vitreous detachment or retinal tear. Floaters and flashes are common symptoms that are usually but not always harmless. Both floaters and flashes commonly occur as we grow older.