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I usually watch one or two videos a day with my 10 month old baby, they show someone playing the piano and the notes "falling" into the keyboard, guitar hero like, this is a sample (that one is the most vivid, other pieces are more quiet).

He seems to enjoy it (and gets a bit sleepy), but I'm concerned that it may be dangerous in some way (for his eyes, his brain, etc).

More info:

  • 15 inch led notebook screen (very low brightness)
  • 80-90 cm distance to screen
  • volume at half (50-56 in windows volume scale, notebook speakers)
  • usually in the morning

Question, is this safe?

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Love the video, but I don't think that strobe flashing is good for him.

The American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendation is:

Avoid digital media use (except video-chatting) in children younger than 18 to 24 months.

Having said that, there are times in which a video is far better than the alternative: stress from excess tiredness, frustration with a long journey… I personally believe it's more a question of quality (and quantity, of course) than of either-or, as laid out by the AAP. So your question is excellent — "is this a good or ok video?" — and the parameters you specify — volume, brightness, etc — also very important. But… my answer is: no.

I'd prefer slow moving videos with real and natural scenes and sounds, and in low contrast (in both audio and image), like these ones:

A favourite for us, though, is this 1980s BBC presentation of Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf with the Royal Ballet School:

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I believe no video can be benefital for such a young baby. In France for instance, the official recommandation is to avoid watching any screen before three years old.

If the watching doesn't exceed a few minutes per day, this shouldn't cause any health hazard for eyes nor brain. The problem is more that a baby's brain is not able to process the 'cold' stimuli from a screen he cannot interact with. In the worst case, with much longer exposure than what you describe, the baby can be trapped in a passive attitude when he should rather actively explore the world around him.

The positive thing is that you watch with him, and the screen seems to be merely a pretext for a peaceful parent-baby time. Your presence might actually be more important for him that what you are watching - he might enjoy it just as much if you are looking together at some of his toys, at an images book, or even if he is just contemplating your face - possibly, with soft piano music in the background.

You will soon have plenty of occasions to watch various programs together, when the child will be able to talk with you about what's in the video, how it makes him feel, what he understands about it. Although short-time watching soft programs is probably harmless health-wise, I'd advice you to wait for a couple of years.

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