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General Medical Questions
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Question : Is it normal for a two-week-old baby to roll his eyes?
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The Trusted Source
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Howard LeWine, M.D.

Henry H. Bernstein, D.O., is a senior lecturer in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. In addition, he is chief of General Academic Pediatrics at Children's Hospital at Dartmouth and professor of pediatrics at Dartmouth Medical School. He is the former associate chief of General Pediatrics and director of Primary Care at Children's Hospital Boston.

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September 16, 2013
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Yes, it is likely to be perfectly normal!

Newborn babies do not have the same vision as older children and adults. They cannot see in 3D. They also cannot see most colors. They can only see large objects less than 8-10 inches away (like mom’s face). Just like babies learn to walk and talk, they must also learn to see.

The eyes develop quickly during the first few months of life. By 2 months of age, babies learn how to focus. They also learn to “track,” or to follow a slow-moving object in front of the eyes.

Before this time, the eyes do not have very good control. They have not learned to work together. Each eye sends information to the brain separately. So, the eyes can do funny things.

"Eye wandering" is common. One eye may seem to be looking in one direction, while the other wanders off in a different one. Eye wandering may well be normal in the first several weeks of life. However, see (pun intended) a doctor if:

  • The eyes are wandering all the time
  • One eye seems like it is always turning in or out
  • One eye seems like it isn’t moving well

At every checkup, baby doctors always check the eyes. The doctor wants to help you make sure that his vision is developing normally right from birth.

 

 

 

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