As a music educator and sound healer, I want to encourage all expectant parents to be aware of and harness the power of music for connecting with their babies. Listening to music, singing along with music and humming are all simple ways that we can use music to better experience our pregnancy and bond with our baby. Humming, in particular, is such a simple sound and something that anyone can do, but the benefits for you and your child are profound. Here are my suggested Do’s and Don'ts for music during pregnancy:
Don’t listen with belly headphones while you are distracted by something else. Music is important as a tool of connection, but just like people outside the womb, babies also need to rest. you might be overstimulating your child. And the baby in your belly will associate certain songs with your mood and how you responded. This might be out of sync with the actual feeling of the music. Use music intentionally, and make sure you listen to the music and/or sing along at the same time.
Don’t stress over the stress. Focus on showing your baby how you work through stressful times. Playing relaxing music to calm down when you are experiencing grief, overwhelm, depression, or anxiety and allowing yourself to cry - can benefit your child. And humming and singing can also help you move from feeling stuck, to feeling present in your body and with your baby again. Your baby, in the womb, is learning how you respond to and deal with stressful times. So if you can do things to move through and flow with your emotions this is really helpful. Music is a powerful tool to release and experience any buried emotions so that you can feel more present in the current moment.
Do Breathe deep - So much of preparing for birthing a child is about how to breathe. How to breathe through your contractions, how to use pain as a guide. And breath is also super powerful during the entire pregnancy to calm the mind and help us feel and connect with the baby inside of us. Stopping and taking quiet breaths and placing your hands on your belly can be a powerful practice to just stop and connect. Deep breathing is a good foundation for any music-making.
Do Hum. When we are happy, we sometimes go around humming without really thinking about it. So in reverse, we can also use humming to help us out when we have a feeling of depression or anxiety. It helps relieve pain, lower blood pressure, and have better posture.
Do Sing along with the songs you are listening to. The sound of a parent's voice is one of the most powerful sounds to a baby as they are growing in the womb and after they are born. Simply listening to music is not as beneficial as singing along. And don’t worry about the quality of your voice - your baby doesn’t care or even know if you are “off-key”. They just want to hear your voice. It will soothe them and it will soothe you. Singing helps the right and the left side of our brain form connections, creating feel-good energy and neuroprotective benefits.
If you would like more help with music and movement to help you connect with your spirit baby in the womb, or before conception, please check out Connecting with Spirit Baby by clicking here.
Books for further reading that I recommend:
The Humming Effect by Jonathan & Andi Goldman
Prenatal Parenting: The Complete Psychological and Spiritual Guide to Loving Your Unborn Child by Frederick Wirth, M.D.