Five Activities that Stimulate Baby’s Vision
When your baby is born her senses are not yet fully developed. These senses, such as vision, will improve and mature in the coming months.
It’s the right kind of stimulation that is going to matter so much to help your baby develop in the way they should. When your baby is first born their vision is very limited.
She most likely can only see to the end of her arm. Colors will appear dull and shaded. She won’t be able to focus very well on any one thing in the first two to three months.
Over the coming weeks, your baby’s vision will improve as the brain cells that are responsible for vision grow and mature.
The first eight months of your baby’s life are the most amazing when it comes to vision development. She’ll learn to focus her eyes better and to distinguish between patterns and colors.
The following are some activities that you can use with your baby to stimulate her vision.
Colors and Designs
Make sure that you buy toys that have contrasting colors and distinct designs.
Even though the colors your baby sees are dull, she’ll still be able to distinguish between colors if these colors are contrasting to each other and have a distinct pattern.
Your baby will start by focusing on big and bold patterns and over time will be able to focus on even the more complex patterns.
Hold a toy or an object that has patterns about 9 to 10 inches from your baby’s face. Make sure the toy is at least the size of your hand.
Holding a patterned toy in this way will help your baby to build up visual discrimination skills.
Decorating the Nursery
Make your baby’s room a place where her vision will be stimulated. Use bold patterns and bright colors when you’re decorating your baby’s nursery.
Have objects on the wall that are exciting and fun to look at. To give your baby something new to look at every few days, change the position of the crib or bassinet in the room.
If you feed your baby in the nursery, move your chair around so that she gets to see the room from different angles.
You want to give your baby as much as possible to look at to stimulate her vision and interest in the things around her.
Learning to Track
Many babies have what is known as a “wandering eye.” This is when both eyes are not focused in the same direction.
Don’t worry as this is completely normal in the first few months after your baby is born. Your baby will quickly be able to develop the skill to focus and recognize that the world is three-dimensional.
Take a brightly colored and contrasting toy and hold it about 10 inches from your baby’s face. Move the toy from left to right and then a bit up and down.
Move slowly and allow your baby to try and focus. This activity will not only help to build focus it will also help to stimulate your baby’s brain and encourage depth perception.
Most babies love to play the simple game of peek-a-boo. This is when you hide your face behind your hands and then suddenly move your hands so your baby can see your face again.
Not only is this an amusing game to play, but it also helps to teach your baby about the permanence of things in the world around her.
Babies are very attracted to stripes, particularly contrasting stripes. While black and white stripes are a common pattern, you can also use toys and other objects that have black and red stripes.
This will encourage your baby’s visual acuity. Babies will naturally try to follow the track of the stripe with their eyes.
Thick stripes are easier for younger babies to see. Try to buy toys, bedroom wall decals, or even car seat covers that have high contrasting stripes.
By the time your baby is about nine or ten months old her vision will be good enough for her to recognize familiar objects and people from across the room.
You’ll notice that she looks for a toy that she’s dropped on the floor. She’ll also start to pay very close attention to the activities of animals or people around her.
Your baby’s eye focus is developing all the time as is her hand-eye coordination. Soon there won’t be anything that gets past those sharp little eyes.
When reading a book to your baby you’ll notice that she starts to see some of the objects that she wasn’t paying attention to before. This is all part of the fun of growing and developing.
It’s important that if you feel there’s something wrong with your baby’s vision that you talk to your doctor right away.
Most doctors will be checking your baby’s eyesight as part of a routine checkup but don’t hesitate to ask questions if you’re concerned.