infant eye sight

Baby’s Visual System

A baby’s visual system develops gradually over the first few months of life. They have to learn to focus and move their eyes and use them together as a team.  The brain also needs to learn how to process the visual information from the eyes to understand and interact with the world. With the development of eyesight comes also the foundation for motor development such as crawling, walking, and hand-eye coordination.

You can ensure that your baby is reaching milestones by keeping an eye on what is happening with your infant’s development and by ensuring that you schedule a comprehensive infant eye exam at 6 months.

The AOA recommends that all babies have an eye exam by 6 months of age in order to be sure that the child is seeing properly, developing on track, and to check for conditions that could impair vision (such as strabismus/misalignment of the eyes, farsightedness, nearsightedness, or astigmatism) or cause other health problems.

Here is the general progression of vision development in the first year of life. It is important to know that many babies fall outside of the normal progression and that reaching these milestones does not mean that an infant eye exam should be skipped.

1 month: Babies are just beginning to be able to focus on objects that are close – between 8-10 inches away. You may notice that your baby’s eyes don’t always work together and that one may drift inward or outward from time to time. If this is happening on occasion, there is no need for concern, however, if you notice that the eyes are largely misaligned the majority of the time, consult with an eye care professional.

2-3 months: Babies will begin to follow objects and to reach for things they see in front of them. They will also learn to shift their gaze from one object to another without having to move their head.

4-6 months: By six months, babies are starting to be able to see more accurately and follow moving objects better. Their depth and color perception, eye teaming, and alignment should be developing at this point.  This is when you should schedule an eye exam to evaluate for visual acuity and eye coordination. The doctor will also check for the health of the eyes and look for anything that could interfere with normal development.

7-12 months: The last half of the first year is when infants start to really develop depth perception and hand-eye coordination. This is when you also need to be more vigilant about eye injuries as babies are starting to move around and explore their environment. Also, keep a lookout for Strabismus or misalignment of the eyes. It is important that this is detected and treated early, otherwise, it could lead to amblyopia or lazy eye, in which one eye does not develop properly. Lazy eye can lead to permanent vision problems if not corrected.

Since the early development of vision is critical for future eyesight, learning, and motor skills, if you have any concerns or questions about your baby’s eyes, contact your eye care professional immediately.  Early treatment of vision and eye problems is often able to prevent developmental delays and permanent vision problems for the future.

About the Author

True Eye Experts

Our mission at True Eye Experts is simple — provide the best possible care to our patients. We make sure we’re doing this a few different ways. Our V-Eye-P Exam is one of the most comprehensive eye exams in the industry. We use state-of-the-art medical technology to screen, diagnose, and treat more conditions than most other providers in the area. We have an extensive collection of designer eyewear that can complement any patient’s face, style, and budget, and our advanced contact lens fitting process can help even “hard-to-fit” patients wear contacts comfortably. Book an appointment online at one of our True Eye Experts locations, conveniently located throughout Central Florida. Have questions or prefer to book over the phone? Give us a call today.

Testimonials

What Our Patients Say

"I have been getting my eyes checked by Dr. Samuel Teske for years. He is very thorough and thoughtful. The staff is also very professional and attentive. Highly recommend True Eye Experts!"
Everyone at this office is very friendly, helpful, and professional, whether it's helping you buy new frames, being fitted for glasses, or just interacting at the front desk. If something is wrong with my glasses, they are quick to remedy the situation. I would highly recommend this office for all your eye care needs!"
"Dr. Randich is personable and thorough. She spends time educating her patients with warmth and genuine concern. Staff is always friendly, helpful, and quick!"
"Staff was very professional, and the eye exam used the latest technologies. Very impressed with all that was done to check my eyes. Great experience!"
I had an emergency and needed to be seen as soon as possible. They fit me in right away and got my injury addressed and on the road to recovery! The staff is so professional and caring! Everyone had a smile on their faces & was welcoming. Thank you so very much for everything! – Kristen L.

Make Your Eye Health A Priority Today