You may know that I’m expecting our fifth baby this summer. I’ve written in the past about the benefits of music in the womb, but I’ve never really made a deliberate effort to play music FOR the baby. I’ve seen the benefits for the children who were in the womb when my life included more music and singing, but I’ve never strapped the headphones to my growing belly.
It looks like this active little guy will be the guinea pig. I received a Lullabelly® prenatal music belt for review and as I am approaching the third trimester, I am beginning a daily diet of prenatal music for him. I plan to start with Mozart’s Piano Concertos, partly because I particularly love them, and partly because music of the Classical Period, and Mozart, in particular, has been found to provide the greatest benefit to a child’s brain growth.
The Lullabelly® definitely makes the experiment more attractive with a comfortable and easy-to-use soft fabric belt that simply wraps around my middle with Velcro. If, like me, you think you may need more reach as the, er, baby grows, they will send you an extender quickly in the mail, for a $3 shipping fee. The same reasonable fee applies if you need a replacement for a lost or broken speaker.
A simple wire can be pulled out of the zippered pouch and plugged into your PC, Phone, or CD player. Or, you can plug in your iPod, pack it away in the pouch and walk around. The belt stays in place and comfortable even while doing some housework or taking a walk, which means busy moms can multi-task. The enclosed directions are clear, and include some succinct guidance on the use of prenatal music stimulation.
If you have the time, there are great benefits to listening with your baby. Both your bodies will respond to the music similarly. Your heartbeats respond. Your serotonin levels respond. With this in mind, the product includes an adapter that allows you to listen along with ear buds. Baby and Mom each have their own volume control.
Safety is considered in the volume levels. They claim that the volume control prevents levels from exceeding that of Mom’s normal speaking voice in the womb. I can’t verify this, as the volume of baby’s speaker is almost inaudible to me. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t get too loud. Actually, it’s so quiet, that I wouldn’t be sure that the sound is actually getting through the material, my clothes, and my body, so I’ll have to trust in their assertions for now.
As far as general use, the only improvement I could recommend would be a section of elastic in the band to help it adjust if you are moving from a standing to sitting position, the only move for which I had to readjust. The electronic components are easily removed for washing. At this point, several colors are available which makes it more fun to shop for or give as a gift.
The $55.00 price tag is certainly more than you’d typically spend on a set of earphones (unless you are my husband), but the value is there as this product is customized to the needs of the unborn child from safety to convenience and comfort for mom. This product is very well designed and would make a great gift for a mom-to-be especially experienced moms who don’t need a lot of baby gear. Here is an idea for Dad to give his expecting wife for Mother’s Day, or a group gift from a playgroup or office crowd. Lullabelly ® is available in limited stores, but can be purchased easily on their website.
So, we’ll see how this experiment plays out. I’ll certainly want to include some Vivaldi and simple folk music in our new son’s repertoire. Studies show that syncopated music can be detrimental to a child’s health at this developing age, so no jazz until he’s out and about. Of course, we will not be featuring angry music or heavy metal proven to be extremely detrimental to brain growth and emotional development. But for about an hour a day, in addition to the music of our home and from Mom’s voice, this young one will be literally swimming in beautiful music. I can’t wait to see what will happen. You can hear all about it in 3 months, when the experiment is over and part 2 of this review is released.
Copyright 2011 Kate Daneluk