Mom’s Voice Makes a Preemie Healthier Photo: Christine VanClever
Because they spend less time in utero, preemie babies are more likely to have cardiorespiratory problems like apnea (pauses in breathing that last longer than 20 seconds) and bradycardia (slow heart rate), but a new study published in the Journal of Maternal-Fetal and Neonatal Medicine from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston suggests that simulation of maternal sounds (a recording of mom’s voice and heartbeat) while they’re in the NICU can lower infants’ chances of having these problems.
Researchers took 14 extremely premature infants (born at 26-32 weeks of gestation) and made sure that they received maternal sound stimulation four times each day while they were in the NICU. The maternal sounds were played in the baby’s incubator. Researchers found that apnea and bradycardia occurred at much lower frequencies when the infants were exposed to maternal sounds, compared to when they were exposed to regular hospital environment noises -- it worked especially well for infants who were born at 33 weeks and older.
Researchers say that the findings are promising, but since there were only 14 babies analyzed, more research is needed to determine the impact.
What do you think of these findings? Did you talk to baby during pregnancy?
Plus, more from The Bump:
Should I talk to Baby In Utero?
Good Toys for Preemies
Preemies Vaccination Schedule
See More: Preemies , Newborn Basics
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