The world around your new-born baby is not only black and white, but also blurry. Because of this limited vision, the high contrast of black and white images are easier for a baby to perceive. Research has proven that those images register powerfully on your baby’s retina and send the strongest visual signals to your baby’s brain. At birth, the nerve cells in the brain are disorganized and not well connected. Visual inputs cause nerve cells to multiply and form a multitude of connections with other nerve cells. This is why visual stimulation is so crucial.
Soft colours are popular in baby toys and nurseries. While these may look pretty to you, your baby cannot see them. The boldness of high contrast images stands out where everything else is blurry.
Babies can see best within a range of about 20-30cm from their eyes. This is equal to the distance between your baby’s head and your face while breastfeeding. By the way, you making faces is a most welcome visual stimulus for a baby.
Although there is some disagreement as to when babies start to see colour, it doesn’t appear to be until around 3 to 6 months. And it does not happen at once. The first colour to see is red followed by green yellow and blue. After about six months the infant has adequate acuity and contrast sensitivity in nearby space, and operating cortical mechanisms for discriminating colours, shapes, faces, movement, stereo depth, and distance of objects, as well as the ability to focus and shift attention between objects of interest.*
Studies show that infants prefer to look at black and white images.
Show your baby our contrast cards and watch your baby’s eyes light up!
*Visual Development - Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Psychology (2017) by Janette Atkinson.