10 doctors weighed in:

Why is it that when I put pressure over my eyes I see colored stars and sparkles?

10 doctors weighed in
Dr. Daniel Bustos
Ophthalmology
6 doctors agree

In brief: Retinal traction

When you pressurize your eyes, you are moving the vitreous jelly that occupies most of the volume of the back of the eye.
The vitreous jelly is attached to the retina and when it moves, the retina moves as well. When the retina moves, it is stimulated and you notice that stimulation in the form of flashes and/or sparkles. Persistent flashes & sparkles though can be signs of a retinal detachment.

In brief: Retinal traction

When you pressurize your eyes, you are moving the vitreous jelly that occupies most of the volume of the back of the eye.
The vitreous jelly is attached to the retina and when it moves, the retina moves as well. When the retina moves, it is stimulated and you notice that stimulation in the form of flashes and/or sparkles. Persistent flashes & sparkles though can be signs of a retinal detachment.
Dr. Daniel Bustos
Dr. Daniel Bustos
Thank
Dr. Robert Chang
Ophthalmology
2 doctors agree

In brief: Retina stimulation

Mechanical stimulation of the retina, neurons fire, thus the visual cortex produces light images.
This phenomenon is referred to as phosphene.

In brief: Retina stimulation

Mechanical stimulation of the retina, neurons fire, thus the visual cortex produces light images.
This phenomenon is referred to as phosphene.
Dr. Robert Chang
Dr. Robert Chang
Thank
Get help from a real doctor now
Dr. Adam Smith
Board Certified,
13 years in practice
382K people helped
Continue
108,000 doctors available
Read more answers from doctors