About halfway through your pregnancy, your baby begins to pick up your voice. This obviously has the effect of familiarising her with the sound of Mum—but does the benefit go beyond, especially if you take the time to talk directly with your bubs?
“There’s no question that the startle response can be observed in a foetus as early as about four or five months,” says Michael P. Nageotte, MD. “A loud noise can cause the baby to suddenly move, and that response becomes much more consistent as the pregnancy progresses.” This much most expectant mums know already—you can feel your little one jolt at a loud noise, or even start hiccuping in response to some auditory intrusion.
But the specificity of sound has an interesting effect, too. One particular study determined that babies can actually remember things heard in the womb, like a lullaby (or Mummy’s voice), with increased brain activity recorded in reaction to a sound played before.
However, the findings don’t link—yet—with evidence of heightened brain development as a result of playing concertos to your child in-utero, or reciting Ulysses.
It all comes down to how you interpret benefit. While your child may not benefit intellectually from you chatting to her while she swims in the amniotic fluid, this unusual communion is beneficial in that it will already begin to strengthen the bond between two who reside so intimately, but have never yet laid eyes upon each other.
Says prenatal program manager Marilee Hartling, RN—bonding is how babies learn about the world: “It’s also part of their personality development.
“When there’s a healthy attachment between baby and parent,” Hartling explains , “the baby comes to believe that the world is a safe place. This is the beginning of the establishment of trust.”
Via The Bump.