I am 28 years old and nearsighted. I have had floaters for several years, and have yearly eye exams.
A couple of months ago, I started having a flash of light in my lower right eye, but ONLY as I am turning a light off or walking into a dark room.
Everything that I saw about retinal detachment indicated that you would have more constant flashing rather than just flashing at certain times. I have also not had any vision loss, pain, or any other eye symptoms. Just the flash.
I don't know how much, or if, this is related to my problem, but I gave up aspartame a week ago because of other problems I was having. Last year I started eating healthier and switched to diet drinks. Around the same time I started having muscle twitches and numbness/tingling ocassionally. I was worried about MS, but then I read about the HORRIBLE things that aspartame causes (including mimicking MS, which is one of the more minor problems it can cause).
Also on the aspartame side effect list was flashing lights in eyes, and lots of eye problems. My twitches/numbness,tingling have stopped in the past week since being off aspartame (I was really shocked that it stopped so abruptly), but the eye flash is still around.
When I went to my eye doctor with this symptom he seemed stumped. He sent me to a corneal specialist who diagnosed corneal scarring right away. The scarring occurs on the outer "ring" of the eye first. On entering a darkened room, the light bounces off, not through, this scar tissue causing a reflective flash that seems to follow the outer ring of the eye.
A complication of dry eye, and in my case Sjogren's Syndrome.
Stay away from fans or open windows, especially at night. Scarring tends to be worse on the lower half of the eye because most people sleep with their eyes slightly open.
I've also heard light flashes like this happen with occular migraine. (the link to the fake sugars?)
I also get this as a result of macular oedema (fluid between the layers of the retina) but that, in my case, is due to an age-related condition called posterior vitreous detachment (PVD) and macular traction. The shrinking vitreous sticks to the inside back of the eye and creates tension on the retina. That tension generates the flashes.
At your age, it is unlikly that you have the same condition but there might be some other abnormal condition affecting the retina. It would be best to have it checked by a neuro-ophthalmologist.
Last edited by TopGeek; 09-29-2008 at 12:58 PM.
Thanks so much for the responses. I should have mentioned this earlier, but I do remember the first eye dr. I saw about the floaters (around 7 years ago) saying that my floaters were due to PVD. I am very nearsighted and have been since I was in elementary school.
I appreciate the suggestions and I'll get in to my eye doc asap.
I have been diagnosed with PVD and a few times a week I see flashes of light, usually in the central part of my vision. Today, I saw them at the edge of my vision and searched for a cause. In another post while searching for "jagged semi-circle flashes of light", the writer observed that the jagged flashes was a classic descrition of a symptom of a migrane headache and that you could have the flashes withough the pain of a headache. Hope this additional information helps.
I have those flashes also. I had surgery for narrow angle glaucoma and then had a vitrous detachment. However, I get the flashes in the eye also. I had an angiogram of the head because the first symptom I had was loss of vision in one eye for a few minutes. My glaucoma dr is sending me to a retina specialist. However, my optromotist who is so amazing, said I am describing occular migranes. He's the second dr to say that, though in my ignorance I poo-pooed the first time I heard that as I don't get headaches. He asked if the flashes are light rapid waving of the hand in the distance which is a great description. He also said cold hands (I have reynaud's goes along with it) I also have sicca syndrome and the dry eye can cause the light sensitivity and blurriness.