Did you know you were rocking out since in the womb? Before you were breathing fresh oxygen you could feel and respond to the universal language of music. The notion of music for babies, as well as fetuses, has been a topic of debate for years, so let’s review the facts our scientific friends have found and come to our own conclusions.
In a study by the Institut Marquès, fetuses were exposed to a couple if classic jams including “Bohemian Rhapsody” in which there were clear signs of mental stimulation in the womb. Additionally, unborn babies have been found to hear sounds outside the womb as young as 16 weeks old.
In another research at the International Association for Music and Medicine conference in Spain where 300 fetuses between the gestation period of 18 – 36 weeks were introduced to variety of songs via a special intravaginal speaker. Out of the 15 songs played to each fetus ranging from sonatas, traditional to pop music, researchers observed a movement of the mouth of fetuses, as a response to the brain stimulation by the music. However, how the fetuses respond largely depends on how simple the melody of the song is and the pitch of the sounds in the song. High-pitched songs were better at stimulating fetuses brains than low-pitched, high-tempo songs.
For instance, up to 91% of fetuses showed a movement of the mouth and sometimes sticking out of the tongue when songs such as “A Little Night Music” by Mozart and other similar songs were played compared to 60% or less recorded when songs from pop and rock music were played.
Additionally, a Pre- & Peri-Natal Psychology Journal study in 1997 showed that babies who had been exposed to some amount of music in prenatal stages developed better cognitive and language skills from birth to six months than their peers. In other later studies, babies were found to recognize the music they heard in the womb after up to 12 months after birth.
Summing up all the facts, data shows that playing your baby some beats improves cognitive development and helps create a lasting bond. Now, play that music baby!