EYE MOVEMENT DEVELOPMENT ACROSS CHILDHOOD AND HOW IT IS INFLUENCED BY ATTENTION. Essay Example
Eye Movement Development across Childhood
Eye movement is a unique neuroscientific tool that allows clinicians in the assessment of the development of the neuromuscular system. There are three pairs of muscles that controls the movements of the eyeball. They include the superior and inferior rectus muscles , the medial and lateral rectus muscles and the inferior and superior oblique (Leigh, and Zee, 2015). Saccade movements are very fast and are immature in children compared to adults though they reach near adult performance levels at 3-4 months.
Saccades at infancy begin significantly later and are lesser in degree. An infant may utilize more than a second to focus on a target object (Fukushima, J, Hatta, and Fukushima, K, 2000). Smooth pursuit movements grant the eyes to continue focusing on a moving object. Neonates doesn’t have this type, but they tend to utilize short saccadic movements to pursue smooth targets. Smooth pursuit movement starts to appear at 8-10 weeks. Attention movement precedes eye movement. Attention tends to improve the notion of events long before the eye movement is done. Also, suppose the eye movement is executed to a specified location or direction, attention movement will happen long before eye movement and therefore cannot be redirected to some other location since attentional movements are primarily neural controlled and operations and can happen more rapidly than eye movement (Fukushima, Hatta, & Fukushima, 2000).
When the speed of the moving object is tremendous to track, the young infants will utilize a combination of saccades and smooth pursuit movements to hold on to the marked object (Pola, 2006). The relationship that scientists have established about attention and eye movement that is prevalent to both children and adults is that the development of voluntary eye movement is significantly influenced by the attention levels. That is, while it might be possible to make a movement of attention without a subsequent eye movement, it is increasingly impossible to make an eye movement without a corresponding shift in the attention focus (Fukushima, Hatta, & Fukushima, 2000).
Fukushima, J., Hatta, T., & Fukushima, K. (2000). Development of voluntary control of saccadic eye movements: I. Age-related changes in normal children. Brain and Development, 22(3), 173-180.
Leigh, R. J., & Zee, D. S. (2015). The neurology of eye movements (Vol. 90). Oxford University Press, USA.
Pola, J. R. (2006). Development of Eye Movements. Visual Development, Diagnosis, and Treatment of the Pediatric Patient, 89.
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