Okay, serious question. Has your baby ever challenged you to a staring contest and surprisingly won?
Does your baby look off into the distance as if they are deep in thought about the world around them? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then you might be asking yourselves, “why do babies stare at me?”
And I’m here to, unfortunately, tell you it’s not because you’re that interesting (totally kidding).
But seriously, though, I’ve always wondered why do babies stare at me. So, like what any curious mom would do, I went online to get to the bottom of this burning question.
And lucky for you, I’m here to tell you exactly why.
What Are You Looking at, Baby? Why Babies Stare
Suppose you haven’t already noticed from your own newborn or from your family or friend’s child. In that case, babies absolutely love to stare at people in the eyes.
And after years of researching child development, scientists and psychologists have discovered that staring is a part of healthy learning and development of their cognitive abilities!
Your baby goes through an insane amount of growth during their first few months of life.
And they are absolutely captivated by anything they hear, see, and touch in the world around them and use these senses to help them learn about their environment.
Seriously, how precious?
Let’s take this a step further and break it down a little bit more.
1. Babies Are Fascinated With Movement
When your baby hits their 3-month mark, this is when they typically begin to catch onto signs of movement in their environment.
And according to research, sensory activity is a crucial part of helping your baby’s brain develop. This is why mobiles are so beneficial for your child when they are newborns!
2. Babies Love Bright Colors
When your child’s environment is filled with bright colors, not only does it catch their attention, but it also aids in vision development.
When you introduce vibrant colors to your baby from an early age, it helps them distinguish between different colors more efficiently, which will help them when they are older.
Why Do Babies Stare at Me in the Eyes?
When your child makes direct eye contact with you, it is actually a considerable indication your child has reached a milestone in their development!
This means that your child sees you and recognizes you as their parent, which is pretty awesome if you ask me!
Holding a mutual gaze with your child is also an early sign of communication between the two of you.
When you use different facial expressions, your baby can reciprocate what emotions you express to them before they understand words!
Therefore, when a baby looks at you, it is essential to hold the gaze with them and interact with them using smiles, laughter, singing –whatever positive emotion you want!
It really is an excellent opportunity to develop their language development from an early age.
What Does It Mean When Your Baby Stares off Into the Distance?
One of the reasons your baby could be gazing away from you is that they are overwhelmed with the stimuli in their environment and experience a sensory overload.
Just like adults, when there is too much going on, such as loud music, bright lights, and a lot of commotion, it can be easy to feel overstimulated in certain situations.
The feelings of being overwhelmed can also appear as crying, fussing, or even finding it difficult to comfort your baby.
Therefore, the best thing for you to do is to remove them from the space and allow them to recover in a quiet area, and re-establish a sense of calmness in them.
Is It Possible for a Blank Baby Stare to Have an Alternative Meaning?
Holding eye contact with another person in a conversation is a critical social skill that lets the other person know that they are digesting what you are saying to them and pick up on the emotion behind the words you are listening to.
This is also very true in children, as it is a critical sign that their intellectual development is on track.
Now, while a blank stare can be totally harmless and not have any other underlying meaning to become worried about.
The presence of a blank stare along with other signs and symptoms could be a clue that your child may have a delay in their development, such as autism.
Autism is a learning disorder that manifests on a spectrum. Every case is different and has different levels of severity.
Autistic indicators typically appear during infancy and early childhood. Suppose you notice your child is not reaching specific milestones that they should be.
In that case, it is crucial to take your child to a medical professional for a checkup to make sure everything is okay.
My Final Thoughts
If you catch your baby staring at you, you should now not have to wonder, “why do babies stare at me?”
Instead, celebrate that your child is learning about the world around them! If you haven’t had your baby yet, prepare yourself to notice so many notable changes in your child’s personality within the first year.
And while it’s essential to make sure that your baby is receiving stimulation for objects, sounds, and movement in their environment, I recommend you pay attention to your child as much as possible for the first little bit.
This will ensure that they are not overwhelmed but also that they are on track with their social and intellectual development from an early age.
Trust me, your babies will grow and surprise you so much with what they are actually capable of within the first couple of years.
I could seriously not stop staring at my children. Again, suppose you have any concerns about your child’s development in their first couple of years.
In that case, it is essential to consult with your doctor, as they will know what to worry about when it comes to your baby’s development.
Being a mom is scary at first. But remember to breathe; you got this! We all do!