What You Need to Know About Newborn Eye Development

The first few months of life are critical, eyesight is a part of early development. In the first 8 months of life, your child will go from seeing no more than 12 inches away to developing almost adult like peepers.  You can help this process along by exercising your child’s ability to focus with a few games and activities.

1 month

Newborns see about to about 12 inches but during their first month they learn how to move their eyes in tandem. Make eye contact or your child will lose focus of you.

2 months

Colors like blue, red and green are indiscernible at this stage. If you want to engage your child’s eyes, use black and white.

3 to 4 months

As evidenced when your child goes to grab a toy and is way off, your child’s depth perception isn’t great to put it mildly. At this age, babies can start to tell the difference between lighter colors so try pastels. Your baby’s eyesight is still probably 20 times worse than the average adult.

5 to 8 months old

The closer you are to your child’s first birthday, the better their eyesight will have developed. They should have developed hand-eye coordination and have depth perception by this time.

It is believed that babies as young as six months can tell distances just as well as adults.

1 to 2 years

Children should be able to recognize familiar objects and scribble using crayons. They are also very interested in exploring their environment.


Signs of eye problems in infants

Most babies begin life with healthy eyes but develop impairment over the course of their lives. Vision problems can develop in childhood, so it is important for parents to know what to look out for.

  • Excessive tearing – this may indicate blocked tear ducts
  • Red or encrusted eye lids – this could be a sign of an eye infection
  • Constant eye turning – this may signal a problem with eye muscle control
  • Extreme sensitivity to light – this may indicate an elevated pressure in the eye
  • Appearance of a white pupil – this may indicate the presence of an eye cancer

How to promote visual development

Parents can help their baby’s vision develop properly through several activities.

  • Use of a night light
  • Changing the baby’s crib position regularly
  • Changing the baby’s sleeping position regularly
  • Keep your child’s toys within focus range which is 8 to 12 inches
  • Talk as you walk around the room
  • Hang a mobile for your bay to kick and grab at
  • Let your baby explore the floor
  • Provide blocks that can be held in hand
  • Play hide and seek games.
  • Name objects to encourage word association
  • Encourage crawling

Vision and how the brain uses visual information are learned skills. Vision problems in infancy are known to cause developmental delays.


Please share your thoughts in the comments section. 


If you enjoyed this article read our other articles on baby’s milestones:

How to Encourage Your Baby to Talk


first published at ehow.com

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