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How Babies Get Their Eye Color

One thing many new parents wonder about is what eye color their babies are going to have. Genetics is what determines eye color. However, there are many different types of genetics involved. This can make it difficult to know exactly what color a baby’s eyes will be. Here are how babies get their eye color.

How Babies Get Their Eye Color

A baby staring with wide eyes

One thing many people may not realize is that eye color is not final when a baby is just born. It may take months for a baby’s eyes to change and even a year until the eyes have finished changing. When a baby is born, their eyes will most likely be either dark gray or blue. However, there are some babies born with their eyes already brown or hazel. A baby’s eyes could stay that color, but most will not. They are usually born with eyes lighter because of a lack of melanin from being in the dark for so long. Melanin is what determines skin color as well. The more melanin a person has, the darker their skin or eyes will be. Melanin develops over time in the eyes. This means it may take a baby with brown eyes almost a year until their eyes have finished changing color.

Although not always the case, a baby’s eye color usually depends on the eye colors of their parents. Parents who both have brown or blue eyes have a very high chance of having a baby with the same eye color. In the past, it was believed that parents who both had brown eyes could not have a baby with blue eyes. However, this is not the case. There is not a single gene that determines eye color, but many different genes. This means that babies can be born with just about any eye color ranging from blue to brown.

Different Eye Colors

Brown eyes are also a dominant gene. This means that more people in the world have brown eyes than blue or green, amber, or hazel. Almost 80% of the world has brown eyes. One rare eye condition is called heterochromia. This is when the eyes are more than one color. This can occur in both pupils, but usually just in one. However, the rarest eye colors are red and violet. These eye colors are only present in babies with severe forms of albinism. Although you will not be able to predict the color of your baby’s eyes until they are born, preparation for a newborn is important. Follow the link for some tips for preparing for your newborn.

Sources

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/Pages/Newborn-Eye-Color.aspx

https://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/primer/traits/eyecolor

https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/which-eye-color-is-the-most-common-in-the-world.html