I remember when Ronan was in NICU and the music therapist came to see us. He was around 6 weeks old when she started chatting about music therapy and how it helps to settle premature babies in stressful situations. I listened to what she had to say but told her to come back as i wanted to have a think about it. This was one of the first decisions i was going to have to make for my newborn baby who was lying in a tiny humidicrib trying to fight for his life, so this was not something i wanted to make a decision about on the spot.
After doing a little research at home i realised that music might actually be a good thing for Ronan after being born prematurely. It wasn’t until he was moved down a bay and was more stable that i decided to contact the music therapist. She came in with a set of speakers, put them in Ronan’s bed either side of his head and softly turned on the music. She had a questionaire sheet that she filled out and gave one to me also. We sat there for about 20mins whilst the music was playing just watching Ronan’s cues to see how he would react. At first i don’t think he knew what was happening and seemed a little frustrated. After about 5mins of the music playing he seemed to relax and stop squirming so we decided to leave it in his bed for the time being.
The music was to only be played when he was having his “cares” and just after a bath so he could relax as these two events always seemed to stress him out. Over time we started turning on the music every time we left for the night and he seemed to settle straight away which was music to our ears!
To this day he loves music. I could turn on the radio and straight away he will look at me and smile no matter what song is playing. Whenever i sing to him he tries to sing/babble back and he loves his ocean aquarian we have left in his cot. He is also a very relaxed and calm child but whether this relates all the way back to music therapy and helped to pave the way for his calm personality i guess i may never know.
Did your premature baby have music therapy whilst they were in the hospital? Do you believe music is something that all premature babies should have?