3 doctors weighed in:

Sometimes I see red spots when I close my eyes. Is this normal?

3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Theodore Wu
Ophthalmology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Red spots

If the spots last a short time, this is ok.
If they persist, then call your ophthalmologist.

In brief: Red spots

If the spots last a short time, this is ok.
If they persist, then call your ophthalmologist.
Dr. Theodore Wu
Dr. Theodore Wu
Thank
Dr. Daniel Goldberg
Ophthalmology

In brief: Yes

Yes. You are just seeing afterimages after your photoreceptors have been exposed to ambient light.
This is probably worse when the light source is bright. My patients always tell me they see colored lights after i examine them with bright light sources. It is harmless and a normal photoreceptor function. Curiously, the colors of the afterimage are generally the color complement of the light source: ie: if the light source is red, the afterimage is blue, and if the light source is yellow, the afterimage is green and vice versa. This is because when viewing the bright light source, the frequency of the light source bleaches the photoreceptor pigments responsible for sensing that frequency, leaving only the complementary color pigments in abundance until the photoreceptors can resynthesize more of the bleached pigments. Hence, the afterimage bears the color of the residual complementary pigments. Interesting.

In brief: Yes

Yes. You are just seeing afterimages after your photoreceptors have been exposed to ambient light.
This is probably worse when the light source is bright. My patients always tell me they see colored lights after i examine them with bright light sources. It is harmless and a normal photoreceptor function. Curiously, the colors of the afterimage are generally the color complement of the light source: ie: if the light source is red, the afterimage is blue, and if the light source is yellow, the afterimage is green and vice versa. This is because when viewing the bright light source, the frequency of the light source bleaches the photoreceptor pigments responsible for sensing that frequency, leaving only the complementary color pigments in abundance until the photoreceptors can resynthesize more of the bleached pigments. Hence, the afterimage bears the color of the residual complementary pigments. Interesting.
Dr. Daniel Goldberg
Dr. Daniel Goldberg
Thank
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