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Preterm Infant Exposure To Parental Voice Encourages Vocalizations - featured October 20, 2011

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[Source: Medical News Today]

Premature infants who are exposed to their parents voices in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) tend to have better vocalizations at 32 and 36 weeks gestational age, researchers from the Department of Pediatrics, Women and Infants Hospital, Providence, Rhode Island reported in the journal Pediatrics.

For a baby, vocalizing (uttering sounds) starts with the first cry. The mother, parents or caregivers start the communication process by responding to their baby's vocalizations. When the mother responds consistently to a baby's vocalizations (utterances), the baby starts acquiring language - learning which sounds are important for communications and survival. Experts say that continued successful communication development depends on two things: 1. The baby's ability to send messages clearly. 2. The parent's ability to interpret those messages.

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Tags: News of the Week Language Newsletter 21 October 2011