Can Babies See Color Or A Black & White World?

Helping your baby understand and react to the world is a great joy for most parents, and trying to see things through your baby's eyes is always fun. For instance, can babies see color? As it turns out, your newborn's world is probably a sight to see.

As with anything related to infants, even the best experts can only guess what colors infants can see. Newborns are notoriously difficult to interview, after all. But according to Baby Center, it takes a few months for your baby's brain to interpret the input from her eyes. In other words, your baby's eyes work just fine from birth on, but it takes a little while for her brain to fully process this visual info. For newborns, it may be easiest to see high contrast images, such as black and white stripes, as noted by Dr. Sears. A pastel painting may just look like a blur to your little one at this stage.

In general, however, your baby will become aware of the colors very quickly. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, newborns can perceive bright colors, and by 3 to 4 months of age, babies can distinguish red from green. Additionally, experts at the American Optometric Association believe your baby has the ability to perceive colors by the time they are around 5 months old. From this point on, your baby's sight and ability to distinguish colors will only continue to mature.

Even if your little one can't quite see a full rainbow yet, you can take steps to help your child's vision development. For instance, newborns respond well to story books with high-contrast pictures, as explained by Parents. This idea can even extend to your decor. As noted in All About Vision, you might consider decorating your infant's room with bright, contrasting colors. (The classic pastel scheme for a nursery may not mean much to your baby right away, after all). And, to really go the extra mile, consider wearing black and white stripes or brightly colored clothes, so your baby will get a little visual workout just by being around you, as suggested in the Daily Mail. In no time, your little one will enjoy the world in bright, vivid color.