Q&A: Could loud music damage my unborn baby's hearing?
I am 16 weeks pregnant, and my husband is a musician. Last night I was in the rehearsal studio with him, and it is extremely loud! I am used to it, but it makes my whole body vibrate at times. It made me a little nervous about the baby. Do you think I did any harm or am I just being paranoid? Is there any danger associated to prenatal exposure to extremely loud music?
I’ve never had any patients encounter problems with their babies as a result of high decibel music. I’m from New Orleans, so I can assure you I’ve had my share of pregnant women exposed to hi-amp, in-your-face, decibels.
But as a physician, I always advise my patients to err on the side of caution. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that doctors advise mothers who were around loud noises on a consistent basis either because of their occupation or from recreational activities such as attending rock concerts, to screen their babies for noise-induced hearing loss. They point to a handful of studies that suggest that unborn babies can experience ill effects—such as hearing loss—from exposure to loud noise in utero.
So go ahead and listen to your husband’s music, but ask him to turn it down to lullaby levels.