Possible vision problem in a 2.5 year old.

I'd like some advice on something I've recently noticed in my 29 month old's vision. {History: born at 32 weeks do to PTL, uneventful birth, 23 day NICU stay with 2 weeks on oxygen and 1 on caffeine, febrile seizure after his one year vaccines, and allergies} He has known the basic colors for months and can identify them by name or if you ask him to point at them. Normally he gets them right 95% of the time. Except red and blue, which is 50/50, this leads me to believe he is just guessing and might not be able to see the difference. The past few weeks I've really focused on showing him these colors and talking about different objects that are these colors. Nothing has changed. His vision seems to be normal otherwise. Would this raise any flags for you? Should I set up an appointment for this? There is probably little they can do if he is truly color blind, however it makes me nervous that something else could be wrong.

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It would be worth talking to your doctor, perhaps at a check-up or sooner if you are in for something, as he or she has a simple screening test for this. Unfortunately, I can say from my husband's experience with color blindness that there isn't anything you can do about it. If it is that, I believe it is generally thought to be inherited and not related to any other developmental issues.

In my husband's case, during preschool years, there was some confusion for a while as to whether he was having trouble learning his colors, but they eventually figured out that it's color-blindness.

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It might just be a case of confusing colours although I agree with Florinas_Mom, I'd have your little one screened for colour blindness to get confirmation. There are different types and degrees of colour blindness and I believe it's a lot more common in males. My father was colour blind, as was my grandmother on my mother's side so it's possible I carry the gene and will need to look out for this with my son.

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I don't think it would raise a red flag for me as it's likely developmental. Could it be color-blindness? Yes, but the most common type of color blindness is red/green, and you didn't mention a problem with green. So if he's identifying that well, I would bet it's simply a developmental thing. Not a delay BTW, just his brain and wiring picking up on different colors at a different stage. He is only 26 months adjusted. To be able to differentiate colors at this age and name most is really good. I once read, years ago, that some little girls know all their colors by 2 and some boys maybe only a couple at 5. It's a wide range. There is a lot of emphasis on early education now, so many do know their colors earlier. My 23-weeker son could differentiate and name at least 6 basic colors by 22 or 23 months adjusted, but green was harder for him, we noticed. He had a favorite color by that point--orange. Even a couple months later than that, he missed green on an EI screening. They were testing ahead--he wasn't really supposed to be identifying it at that age, so it didn't worry me at all. Interestingly, he knew more unusual colors they didn't test or couldn't count at the time, like purple and brown. It wasn't long before he got good at green too. At 26 months adjusted, I got him the Signing Time DVD Box of Crayons, and he loved it. He knew 10 colors after watching it some, and was emerging on gold and silver then too. Green was more solid with him. I have no idea why it took him a little longer to identify it well...I just figured it was one of those things and didn't worry about it. I doubt your doctors will be concerned that a young 2-year-old isn't differentiating red from blue yet.

I think they don't typically test for color blindness until they are older. I taught first grade and remember them checking all the boys in our class for color-blindness at vision screening time. I am not sure if they also do that at kindergarten screening, or not. It's much rarer in girls, but still possible. Like the above said, there really isn't anything they can do for it. But it would be something you could let his teachers know about down the road. My father-in-law suffers from color blindness, as did his mother. If a girl does have it, then all of her sons will too and her daughters will be carriers. I would guess it's much more likely that his brain just can't perceive the difference in red and blue yet, that it got some other colors down faster, same as my son at that age. I would bet colors are like everything else, some come easier than others to individual children, for whatever reason.

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