A major part of happy, healthy baby development is quiet time before bed. It’s the perfect time to play music that is simple and repetitive, and close to the sounds the baby is first used to hearing in the womb: mother’s voice and heartbeat. This creates a comfortable environment for the baby, and will help soothe the baby to sleep.
The primary purpose of a lullaby is to soothe and induce sleep. Lullabies have long been used in this fashion in every single human culture. What is it about lullabies that produces this sedative effect on infants? Well, it’s a number of things. The organized and predictable melodies provide stability in what can be a very confusing world. Lulling rhythms and gentle melodies provide a safe environment and establish a mood that a baby can move toward and eventually match. Slow, steady tempos are reminiscent of the mother’s heartbeat, which echoed all around the baby prior to birth. The combination of these attributes make lullabies an ideal tool to calm your infant.
A lullaby establishes a soothing correlation between an infant’s physiology, its state of mind, and the outside world. As soon as a lullaby begins, a soothing sense of order infuses the infantile consciousness. The swaying rhythm is close to its own heartbeat, and the quiet melodious sounds a relief from the world’s usual racket; the simple, repeating melody is also a source of comfort.
Archaeological evidence suggests that parents have used lullabies to soothe their young for at least 4,000 years. Despite the general assumption that lullabies help babies relax, it wasn't until fairly recently that scientists began to understand exactly why these gentle tunes are so effective. Modern research methods have found that lullabies do much more than help baby sleep. These songs actually create a physiological response in the body, which can have far-reaching effects on health and wellness.
One simple explanation is that lullabies feature a triple meter, or 6/8 time. This gives the song a rocking or swaying rhythm, closely matching the movements the foetus experienced while in the womb. By recreating this womb experience through song, music can comfort a child and soothe him or her off to sleep
Music can help establish routines, such as bed time and bath time and acts as an indication of what comes next. Listening to the same music at the end of the day signals to babies and toddlers that it’s time for bed.