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Do you have a history of migraines?
Your description is a suggestive of an ocular migraine. Typical migraines can have visual auras followed by an intense headache. Ocular migraines have only the visual symptoms without the headache. These are usually not serious and generally do not need treatment. Ocular migraines tend to start small in the periphery, enlarge over the next half hour, then start to fade away. Some people describe them as zig-zag lines or like looking through cracked glasses or a kaleidoscope.Ocular migraines are diagnosed when there are no other identifiable causes. So, it is important to have a complete eye exam to check for other problems. Once such entity causing similar flashes of lights is called a posterior vitreous detachment. This is where the thick gel in your eye starts to pull away and separate from the retina. This is a normal process that happens in many people. Sometimes, this process can cause problems with the retina so it is important you visit your optometrist or ophthalmologist for a dilated retinal exam to check for any problems.If you notice a sudden increase in floaters, flashes of light (like a lightening 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.Remember to press the green ACCEPT button. It was a pleasure helping you with your question and feel free to ask any additional follow up questions.