Fetuses can most definitely hear you, beginning at the start of the second trimester. Playing music for your baby, still in the womb, may be all the rage, but it may not be good to overdo it. Just because the fetus can hear doesn’t mean that you should try to enhance sensory stimulation. Too much of that could lead to bizarre adaptation patterns, according to “Psychology Today.”
About the Fetus
Fetuses spend most of their time sleeping. At 32 weeks, your fetus is asleep 90 to 95 percent of the time, sometimes in deep sleep and sometimes in REM sleep, the sleep state where you dream. Just before birth, your fetus is still sleeping about 85 to 90 percent of the time. During awake time, the fetus hears sounds, including your voice, which does seem to calm the fetus, according to “Psychology Today.” But, just as you wouldn’t disturb a newborn baby trying to sleep in his crib, you probably shouldn’t disturb your fetus, either.
Because the fetus can hear, some parents swear by using devices that pipe classical music into the mother’s abdomen. These “pregaphones,” proponents claim, make their children smarter and more musically inclined, according to “Psychology Today.” Scientists are not as certain. For one thing, no research has proven this true and for another, since you don’t know when the fetus is awake, sticking speakers on your abdomen may change the sleep patterns.
If you do want to try providing music for your fetus, limit the activity to an hour a day, suggests the BabyCenter website. Any more than that probably overstimulates the baby. You could also just listen to the music on your stereo. You don’t need to blast the music because the amniotic fluid conducts sound.
Most people recognize music by Mozart to be one of the best choices for your fetus. Mozart’s symphonies have a good mix of sounds and repetition, Rosalie Pratt, music professor at Brigham Young University, told the BabyCenter. Pratt says that any music could be pleasing for your baby, except for rap or hard rock because those types of music are too discordant and jarring for a fetus or baby.
The bottom line on playing music for your fetus is to play music you enjoy. Play music that relaxes you or makes you happy. Your mood has an effect on your fetus. If you are relaxed and happy, that is also good for your fetus.