Cheap Entertainment

Just back from a walk with the Beastie Baby. This time I got to smell the honeysuckle and listen to the bees buzz. Spring in Central Pennsylvania. “Enjoy! Enjoy!” (Thank you to Manny Gordon for that quote!)

Lin got me another article on geographic atrophy and scotomata. I have not read it yet. I will let you know but right now I want to talk about floaters.

We had a yoga class outside in the middle of the afternoon. When I was in savasana (corpse pose or final rest in English. I like the Sanskrit much better!), I was watching my floater swim around in my eyeball. Hey, what can I say? I take my entertainment where I can find it!?

I have been told that eventually most floaters settle to the bottom and just hang out there. However, when I am in yoga and doing all sorts of poses, mine gets riled up and ‘swims’, my floater is in my right eye and looks like a mosquito larva.

Or at least, after some deliberation, that is what I decided. Cheap entertainment. Sort of like lying in the grass and deciding what the clouds look like.

Floaters are one more delightful thing we develop as we get older. The gel in our eyes – the vitreous – separates. I had a chocolate pudding analogy before. Know how pudding separates into fluid and clumps of pudding when it has been in the fridge too long? Same basic idea. The floaters are the clumps.

I have had this particular floater for years. You probably have some ‘old friends’ in your eyes as well. However, if those old friends suddenly have a lot of company from other floaters, if you get flashes, if you get a curtain-like shadow (see photo to the left) or if peripheral vision starts going dark, get to your eye doctor stat. These are signs of serious retinal damage and need to be dealt with as soon as possible.

The Mayo Clinic page on eye floaters lists a series of questions for which you might want to have answers when you go to your doctor. They also list some possible treatments for floaters. Laser surgery is used infrequently due to the serious risks involved. The other possible treatment is a vitrectomy. That is not fun and games either.

If possible, the best and safest thing to do is to just put up with the floaters. Shake your head. Watch them float. Think what they remind you of. If nothing else, they are cheap entertainment.

written April 29th, 2017

Next: Turn Your Mind

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