It’s been well documented how playing music or singing to your baby in utero can help pacify your baby after birth. Even though a baby’s ears are only fully developed by 24 weeks, babies are able to feel rhythmical movement from 16 weeks, say experts, and if you sing to your baby, or play the same tune over and over, she’ll recognise and be reassured by it after birth.
According to researchers, the more stimulation your baby gets in the womb, the more connections and pathways her brain will create, because during the first nine months of her life, the auditory, visual and other parts of the brain – even the ability to concentrate, begin to mature. Incredibly, during pregnancy, a baby develops as many as 50 000 brain cells per second, and by the time she’s born, she’ll have around 100 billion brain cells.
The benefits of playing music to your baby in the womb
It’s been established that music lays down patterns of brain development and helps with acquisition of several skills required for future learning. For instance, it improves spatial-temporal reasoning, needed to grasp ratios, fractions, proportions and thinking in space and time, all of which are critical to understanding mathematics and science.
• Whether you play a CD in the background, or put your iPod’s headphones on your stomach, just make sure that the volume is not too loud; otherwise you might overstimulate your baby.
• The maximum volume on your CD player or iPod should not be more than 70 decibels. If the music is too loud, you might hurt or startle your baby.
Soothing music ideas to play to your baby
• Experts recommend playing classical music like Mozart’s symphonies to your unborn baby, because they have the right mix of new sounds and repetition, which they believe babies may enjoy.
• Any music will do really, but steer clear of rap, grunge, or hard rock songs.