4 Awesome Ways Technology Is Helping Millennial Parents Bond with Baby before Birth
Posted: Apr 03 2014
For many parents, the nine-month journey to the labor ward is one filled with joy and anxiety in equal measure as the excitement surrounding a new life is often at war with the fear of a miscarriage. The result is that prenatal bonding doesn’t always come easy. This is especially true for dads who miss key moments in pregnancies such first kicks, doctor visits, and ultrasounds done under medical supervision.
Yet, evidence shows that this bonding time is a critical part of early brain development and central to the process of post-natal bonding. It’s also crucial for a baby’s sense of security, trust, and independence. So where does that leave moms who struggle to wrap their head around the little person growing in their belly and dads who can’t be present for special moments that promote bonding?
Over the past few decades, remarkable technological developments have made it possible for parents to enjoy prenatal bonding in unique and fun ways.
From high-tech belts that allow fathers to feel fetal kicks to 4D ultrasounds that show 3D images of babies moving in real-time, expectant parents are spoiled for choice when it comes to experiencing their bundle of joy during the early stages of development.
While technology like rapid prototyping that creates life-sized plaster models of unborn babies is financially unattainable for most parents-to-be, a device like a baby heartbeat monitor is an affordable option that allows parents to develop a connection and strengthen the bond with their unborn baby in the comfort of their own home. Not surprisingly, these gadgets are flying off shelves and fast making their way onto pregnancy must-have lists.
“One of the best aspects of owning a baby heartbeat monitor is that parents can hear the life they’ve created wherever they are, any time they want,” says Brian Klecker, owner of the Womb Music Baby Heartbeat Monitor manufactured by Wusic. As this type of technology becomes readily available to consumers, parents are deriving a whole range of incredible benefits.
#1: Peace of mind for nervous parents
Whether it’s too early to feel movement or baby simply isn’t being active, anxious parents are finding comfort by checking in on their child between their doctor’s ultrasounds. “Having experienced two previous miscarriages, the wait between appointments is torture—more so with anterior placenta because it is hard to feel my babies kick,” says first-time mom, Sarah Geddie who’s now pregnant with twins. “My baby heartbeat monitor provides invaluable peace of mind.” Although a home heartbeat monitor doesn’t replace proper prenatal care or serve as a medical device for diagnostic purposes, it can be hugely reassuring – especially for first-time moms and parents who have experienced a loss.
#2: A shared experience builds stronger relationships
A shared experience is a powerful ingredient in the bonding process. In addition to cultivating a stronger connection with baby, it can be instrumental in improving an expectant couple’s relationship. Siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends can also join in the fun and actively nurture an affinity toward the baby before it even makes its way into this world. Everyone feels involved, experiencing precious moments first hand rather than living vicariously through the parents. Since you can also record the heartbeat and share it through social media, email, and other sharing apps, distant relatives and friends don’t have to feel left out during this wonderful time.
#3: Psychological preparation
For some parents, pregnancy can feel surreal, which can hinder or delay the bonding experience. Listening to the heartbeat, as well as distinctive movements and kicks as the baby grows, can make the baby real and assist with the psychological changes that take place over the nine month period. It can also help parents and siblings adapt to the reality of the new roles they will soon need to fill.
#4: Convenience and inclusion
“My husband was so disappointed when he couldn’t make it to my first ultrasound and missed hearing our baby’s heartbeat for the first time,” says Jennifer Hutton whose husband’s job requires him to travel frequently. “Having this technology available outside of scheduled appointments is amazing. Sam can listen to our little one whenever he’s home and not feel like he’s missing out on the most important moments. It’s so sweet watching his face light up every time we use our heartbeat monitor. ” Besides not being confined to midwife and doctor visits, the monitor allows couples to enjoy the experience in the comfort and privacy of their own home.
Pregnancy is a scary and exciting time of life. Millennial parents have access to a variety of resources that can help them understand what to expect when they’re expecting, and now they have the technology to experience it on a whole new level. “We connect the audio output from the monitor to our home stereo’s surround sound system. It seems like we were right inside my belly with our baby. It has a very immersive effect,” says Isabella Sanchez.
At just six weeks gestation, a baby develops its heartbeat. At ten weeks gestation, a baby starts responding to touch. At seventeen weeks gestation, a baby weighs little more than an iPhone 6. In those last seven to nine months, parents can expect to hear their baby’s heart galloping at about 160 beats per minute as it pumps roughly 300 gallons of blood per day. It’s fascinating. It’s miraculous. Until recently, it’s something parents were only able to experience within the confines of their doctor’s office.
Thanks to the technology offered in products like the Womb Music monitor from Wusic, families are now experiencing the amazing miracle of their baby at home.