Researchers from the University of Helsinki discovered unborn children actually remember words spoken before they were born. The study indicated babies are thinking and retaining information much earlier than previously thought.
Because the sound processing part of a baby’s brain develops in the third trimester (starting at 28 weeks), researchers decided to test how much is going on in a babies brain prior to birth.
To do this, they had a number of mothers play a recording to their babies a few months prior to birth. It was a simple made-up word “tatata.”
If the mothers played the word as much as requested, the select babies would have heard this word approximately 25,000 times before birth.
After the babies were born, the researchers played the sound again to the test babies and as well a group who had not heard the word. This time they used electroencephalography (EEG) to test the babies’ brain patterns. They found babies who had repeatedly heard the word had neural signals indicating recognition while those babies that hadn’t heard it showed no recognition. The study also showed the more the word was played, the greater the recognition.
A similar study conducted in 1988 showed babies recognized the theme music of their mother’s favourite soap opera.
Another study revealed babies also pick up dialects in the womb and actually cry with the accent of their mother right after birth. According to an article in Scientific American, researchers found “French infants wail on a rising note [baby cry sound] while the Germans favor a falling melody [baby cry sound]. Those patterns match the rhythms of their native languages.”
For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. Psalm 139: 13