How Far Can Babies See?

image001 Even though your baby can see from birth, her vision is quite blurry. Your baby’s sight will develop over her first year gradually. She will be seeing the world almost as well as you do by the time she is one year old. Your baby’s eyes will take in massive amounts of information about the world around her as she grows. Her developing eyesight will help her learn how to walk, roll over, grasp, crawl and sit.

Just like babies learn how to talk and walk, they also learn how to see over a period of time, as they are not born with all the visual abilities that they need. They have to learn how to focus their eyes, use them together as a team and move them accurately. For children to understand the world around them and interact with it appropriately, your child needs to learn how to use the visual information that their eyes send to the brain.

How Far Can Babies See?

From the minute your baby is born, her sight will develop gradually.

Timeline

Description

Newborn

When your child is born, her vision is not clear. However, she can still make out shapes, light and movement. You will notice that your baby will blink when exposed to sudden light. Newborns also have a tendency of turning her eyes to a window, or any other source of light. The eyes of a new born wonder a lot because your baby has not yet learnt that she can be able to fix both of her eyes on a particular object. During the first few weeks, your baby can only focus 20cm to 30cm away. This distance is only far enough to make out the face of the one who is holding her clearly.

One month

It doesn’t matter even though your baby cannot see far. This is because to her, your face is the most interesting thing. She will be seeing your face most of the time, as you will be staying close to her most of the time. By the time your baby is one month and a few weeks, she will have already learned how to focus both her eyes. She can now follow the progress of an object that is moving. Even though your baby can see colors, she cannot be able to tell the difference between them.

Two months

At two months, color differences are becoming clearer to your little one. She can be able to differentiate similar shades. Encourage her by showing her bright books, photos, toys and pictures.

Four months

Your baby will start to tell how far an object is from her. This is called depth perception. She will also start to gain better control of her arms. The visual development will help her grab things such as toys and hair.

Five months

Your little one will become better at spotting small things and examining things closely. She will be able to also recognize an object after seeing only a part of it.

Eight months

At 8 moths, your baby’s vision is now clearer, almost like an adult’s. She can now be able to see longer distances. Her short-range sight is, however, better and clearer than her long-range sight.

Nine months

Her eyes will be close to their final color at 9 months. Your baby’s vision will be sharper and she can be able to pick very small objects, even as small as a crumb.

12 Months

By the time your baby is 12 months old, she will be able to see as well as a normal adult. Your baby will have depth perception that will allow her to tell the difference between far and near. She will also be able to recognize the people she knows coming from a distance.

Want to know more about the development of your baby’s vision? Watch the video below:

What Can You Do to Help with Your Baby’s Visual Development?

1. Birth to Four Months

  • Change the position of the cribs frequently. You should also change the position of your child in the crib.
  • Use a dim light or a nightlight in your baby’s room.
  • Alternate left and right sides with every feeding.
  • Keep toys within your baby’s focus. About 8 to 12 inches, the toys should be within reach and touch.
  • As you walk around the room, talk to your baby.

2. Five to Eight Months

  • Give your baby time to play and explore the floor.
  • Hang a crib gym, a mobile, or other playing objects strewed on the crib for your baby to kick, pull and grab.
  • Provide wooden or plastic blocks that your baby can hold in her hands.
  • Play games such as party cake, while moving your baby’s hands through the motions as you say the words out loud.

3. Nine to Twelve Months

  • When talking, name objects so as to encourage your baby’s vocabulary development, and word association skills.
  • Play games such as hide and seek, either with your face or with toys, so as to help the development of your baby’s visual memory.
  • Encourage your baby to creep and crawl.

4. One to Two Years

  • Tell or read stories so as to stimulate the ability of your child to visualize and pave the way for reading and learning skills.
  • Roll a ball forth and back so as to help your child track objects with the eyes visually.
  • Give your child building blocks and balls of all sizes to play with so as to boost small muscle development and motor skills.

When to Be Concerned

Normally, your baby’s eyes will be examined before you leave the hospital. This is part of the newborn’s check up. You should be concerned if you notice the following signs:

  • Your baby has a problem moving one of her eyes, or both of them in all directions.
  • Both of your baby’s eyes or one of them can’t track an object by the time you go for postnatal check.
  • Your baby’s eyes are crossed most of the time.
  • One or both of your baby’s eyes wonder or turn out.