Vision of infants develops from birth and affects their development in many ways. Their visual development changes rapidly during the first year of life. An infant’s first exam usually happens right after birth by a pediatrician. You can use the guideline below as a way to follow your baby’s visual development.
Milestones of Infant Visual Development
Your infant should be able to . . .
- Momentarily follow an object with eyes or head by 5 weeks.
- Bring both hands together by 8 weeks.
- Hold and sustain direct eye contact with you by 3 months.
- Turn both eyes together and locate near objects by 4 months.
- Make the sounds p, b, t, d, and m by 5 months.
- Roll over independently by 7 months.
- Sit without support by 8 months.
- Creep and crawl by 9 months.
When Should You Seek Professional Help?
A “well baby” comprehensive vision examination should take place at or before 6 months of age. Early detection is critical in preventing a treating vision conditions that can have lifelong effects.
Professional help should be sought sooner if you notice delays in development, if your infant’s eyes turn outward or inward (lasting more than a few seconds), or if you note excessive rubbing of the eyes. These are indicators of abnormal vision development and should be evaluated by an optometrist as soon as possible.