There is no stronger bond between humans than that between a mother and her child. The maternal bond usually begins to develop during pregnancy and lasts for a lifetime. However, you don’t need to wait for the child to be born before strengthening such bonds. There are plenty of proven ways to increase parental bonds during the pregnancy.
The early stages
Starting at around 18 weeks into the pregnancy, the ears of the fetus are beginning to develop, and they can hear the sounds of the mother’s body, such as a heartbeat or the sounds of her stomach. At around 26 weeks, a fetus can hear voices outside the womb as well. Talking to your child throughout the day, can help you as an eager mother feel closer to your child, and can have a soothing effect on her or him.
The comforting sounds
Studies have shown that infants can remember sounds they have heard during the pregnancy and it helps them relax. A mother’s voice will comfort the child and make it feel closer to you as well. Classical music, such as Mozart, also helps increase the brain activity of the fetus.
The power of touch
Another method, if not the most important one, is touch. Feeling or rubbing your bump helps comfort and relax the fetus. Touch has been proven to be one of the most effective ways for a mother to bond with her baby. As the pregnancy progresses, the mother may even catch a reaction from the child, such as a kick or movement in the womb.
Not to say that babies rarely react, but in the movements of everyday life, it’s very hard to feel a physical reaction. If expecting mothers, especially in the final few months of the pregnancy, set apart some time everyday just to be alone with the baby without any distractions like television or fathers-to-be, it can work wonders on prenatal bonding.
The benefits of modern technology
The final piece in the puzzle is ultrasound. During pregnancies, no matter how big your womb grows, it can still be hard to grasp the idea that there’s life growing inside. Ultrasounds can give images of the baby tossing and turning, sucking its thumb or just yawning, but suddenly, it makes the idea real. You can even measure the fetal heartbeat, by just using a Doppler device to check your little one’s steady heartbeat. Also, as the ultrasound helps a mother catch a glimpse of her child that by itself, dramatically improves the maternal bonding process.
Some other ways of bonding
These are just a few ways by which prenatal bonding can be developed. Others involve going to prenatal classes with your partner, buying items for your eagerly expected little one, and having the rest of the family talk to the baby as well. It’s important to remain stress-free during this time, as negative emotions can affect the overall development of the baby. The process of giving birth, from conception to delivery, is truly magical and expecting parents should be proud and happy for their child.