Hi. I'm online and happy to answer your question today.
So, Dr. rick, do these seem to be the normal "floaters" that someone my age might experience?
The thing that seemed most unusual was the perfect symmetry of the middle distance spots, a perfect tiny circle with a perfect tiny dot in the exact center.
Yes, they seem like normal floaters, if there is such a thing
I've notices the irregular shapes for years, things that I assumed were the result of little dust motes or other miniscule debris on the eyeball's surface.
You are likely experiencing a PVD or posterior vitreous detachment, a common event that happens in many people. You have a thick gel material in the middle of your eyes. Over time as it liquefies, this gel material collapses on itself and pulls away from the wall of the eye. In the process it can stimulate the retina -- causing the flashes that you see. It is recommended that you see your ophthalmologist to look at the retina to make sure there are no problems such as a retinal hole or tear. In most cases, there are no problems, but this exam is precautionary and allows for preventative treatment of any lesions that are found. If you notice a sudden increase in floaters, flashes of light (like a lightning storm), or a shadow/veil in the periphery of your vision, this can be worrisome for a retinal detachment. You would need to contact your ophthalmologist promptly in that case.
Those things you were seeing in the past could very well be defects in the tear film, but what you are currently describing are consistent with a PVD
OK, off to the ophthalmologist. Thanks!