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When something looks obnoxiously unpleasant or weird, we may sometimes roll our eyes to show our displeasure. But if your infant does that, you will be worried, no doubt! Of course, your little one won’t roll his eyes to show his displeasure or anger. Then why does a baby roll his eyes? And is it normal for a baby to roll his eyes? Well, the answer is a big ‘No’! Most babies may roll their eyes while asleep but sometimes rolling of the eyes can be because of various other reasons also. Let us find out why babies roll their eyes and whether or not you should be concerned.
Why Do Babies Roll Their Eyes While Sleeping?
When a baby is born, his little body needs some time to adjust to the outside world and mature. Just like various other organs in his body, his eyes (or vision) too are in the development phase. This means that your baby’s vision and eye muscles will be weak. You need not concern yourself if your baby rolls his eyes while asleep because he will do less of it as he grows up. Instances of eye-rolling in infants is a part of normal development phenomenon. If you see you baby rolling eyes upwards, consider it as a normal developmental phenomenon. When your little one is sleepy, you may even notice him rolling his eyes back in the head. Hence, rolling of eyes can be associated with the infant’s drowsy state or the transition from sleepy state to wakefulness. Sometimes, your little one may even roll his eyes while awake. But if your baby rolls his eyes too often, you should get him checked as it could be linked to some serious medical conditions such as seizures, head trauma, low blood sugar, hypocalcaemia.
Consideration and Warnings
As a parent, you need to be prompt in understanding whether or not your newborn’s eye movement, rolling of eyes, or the symptoms that your baby may be exhibiting require immediate medical assistance. Maintain a diary or log to monitor your baby’s eye movement. The log will help you establish the reasons that may be triggering your baby to roll his eyes. It will also help you establish whether your baby rolls his eyes at a particular time of the day or not. If something concerning your baby’s health or condition appears fishy, act promptly and contact your baby’s paediatrician.
If you feel that your newborn baby eyes rolling is accompanied with seizure-like symptoms, which may include stiffness of the limbs, incessant crying along with shaky body movements, you need to ensure your baby’s safety. Seizures in babies may lead to complicated medical conditions and seizures may occur if your baby may be running a high fever, epilepsy, severe infections etc. If your baby experiences seizure, make your baby lie on the floor preferably sideways, remove any tight clothing and take him to the doctor right away to know the cause of the seizure.
When to Consult a Doctor
If your baby rolls his eyes due to the lack of muscle control, you may not notice other signs or symptoms along with it. But if he rolls his eyes due to some underlying medical condition, it may be accompanied with other noticeable symptoms like convulsions, shivering, trembling, irregular breathing, change in skin colour, jerky body movements, uncontrolled crying, excessive irritability or other such symptoms.
If you are a first-time parent and your infant starts rolling his eyes, it will scare you, but don’t panic. It is a common problem in newborns and is generally associated with a lack of weak muscle control in the eyes. However, if you notice something abnormal, seek professional guidance. If anything abnormal may be detected, your baby’s paediatrician may suggest that you refer a neurologist for further diagnosis and tests.
Also Read: Common Eye Problems in Babies