Most parents think that parenting only starts after baby is born, but current research is proving otherwise. From the moment you learn that you are pregnant, you can start to stimulate and communicate with your baby.
Think of the womb as your child’s first world, so whatever he experiences in the womb will shape his expectations of life after birth. This means that the prenatal period (time between conception and birth) is the critical time to establish the basic architecture of the brain and build the foundations for its future potential.
Also, research in the field of prenatal stimulation found that external stimulation such as stroking the unborn baby through the belly, playing soft and melodious music, as well as light and vibrations are pleasurable to the baby.
Baby learns life’s first lesson in the womb
When a mother actively engages her unborn baby in prenatal communication and stimulation, she is actually creating a conducive womb environment that will create a positive influence on her baby’s future life.
According to Dr Thomas R. Verny – the world’s leading expert on the effects of prenatal and early postnatal environment on personality development – prenatal stimulation bodes well for healthy fetal development.
"Every minute, there are new brain cells being formed in the unborn child. And as the new brain cells are being formed, pathways or circuits are being formed along the lines that help assist communication for whatever the child the needs. For example, the child will obviously need to breathe, the child will need to move when he is born, the eyelids will need to open and close; so all these organs and all the nervous tissue that supply these organs has to start developing long before birth.
It’s the same thing with the brain circuits. The more you stimulate a child’s skin, or the more you stimulate its auditory nerves (hearing) the more those pathways will develop and become stronger so that when the child is born, he or she is better prepared for the world. "
5 prenatal tips to shape your child’s future today
Here are some suggestions on what you can do today to stimulate and communicate with your unborn baby:
- Converse with your unborn baby
- Think about your baby
- Use daily experiences to prepare your baby for life after birth
- Reach out touch your baby
- Keep stress at bay or under control
One of the simplest ways for you to do that is to start communicating with your baby as if he or she is already present with you. Treat your baby as a conscious being. Begin talking, singing or even humming to your baby. This will help them get used to your voice and begin to recognize language formations.
Although your baby is not physically present with you at this moment, you can still think about him now and about the time when you would meet soon. Your baby will be able to sense your loving thoughts and this will provide him with a sense of comfort, love and stability.
The prenatal experience is all about preparing your baby for life after birth. So it is only fitting that you use normal, everyday experiences to share with your baby. It is all about showing your baby your lifestyle and the world that he will be born into. Make an experience out of the little activities in your daily life. Talk about your experiences to your baby no matter how mundane or ordinary it may seem to you. Remember, what seems ordinary to you is certainly not ordinary for your baby!
You may have noticed that you frequently rub, pat or touch your tummy throughout the day. Perhaps it is because we unconsciously know that this is one way of physically reaching out and communicating with the unborn baby. You can touch your belly in different ways and explain the difference of each touch to your baby as you do that i. e. patting, stroking, rubbing and so on. You can make tummy-rubbing a frequent daily exercise as you shower, while you are using an anti-stretch mark cream on your tummy and even patting your tummy in time to the music you are listening to!
Maternal stress has a direct and negative impact on the formation of your baby’s personality even as early as in the womb. You see, your baby is totally dependant on you for all of his or her needs, including physical, psychological and emotional content. You have to remember that your baby is still at an extremely fragile and fertile state of development, so you have to be careful about the kind of environment and influences that you are creating for him or her.
After a while, it will become as natural as your performing your other normal, everyday routine. And the best part is, studies have shown that parents who engage in prenatal stimulation report having a closer and strong bond with their children. So take the time to stimulate and communicate with your baby during your pregnancy!
The authors of this article are also the Founders of http://www.brightbellybaby.com These 2 friends, Olivia, a professional writer and Safia, a registered nurse, are passionate about creating a stronger awareness among expectant mothers on the importance of prenatal stimulation. They have just created an audio CD featuring an interview with Dr Thomas R. Verny which is available on their website. Visit their website to listen to excerpts of the CD or learn more about prenatal stimulation by signing up for your FREE Prenatal Stimulation Email Course at Tips!