I love products with awesome meaning! Just like this Harmony Ball (a.k.a. Bola Ball) amazing gift for a pregnant friend!
To be honest, I've never heard of the Bola Harmony Ball a month ago. But since I saw it and get its point, it became my favorite gift idea for every mom-to-be – for her or for the family heirloom. And if you have ever listened to the softness of a wind chime of a Bola Harmony Ball, you would understand me & how this is so great.
That's me - 6th month pregnant
** This following post contains some affiliate links. Despite that, the written in here is honest and based on my own opinion or/and experience, research and wish to share my findings with you!
As a mom who has been carefully gathering information about a fetus growth and development, I've found that the baby in the womb can hear outside from about the 20th week. I’ve taken many pieces of advice on talking to my belly (acting like crazy) and playing quiet, harmonious music. Experienced moms even recommended me to avoid going to the cinema and night clubs in the 3rd trimester. No wonder. I’ve learned my lesson by myself. I remember once, being in almost the 6th month when I went to a night club (proudly showing off my small bump). It was crowded, so we needed to stay on feet right next to a huge loudspeaker. The music was a mixture of an intensive beat. And very loud. In just half an hour my baby started kicking me from the inside, reacting to the bass sound and beat so hard, as if telling me to stop that noise (or maybe trying some dance moves - I am not sure yet which one was true). Soon I felt desperate need to use the toilet (again and again and again...) and finally found myself at home, earlier than planned. The result was that my baby continued kicking me strong and not letting me fall asleep until early morning (I felt as if I was punished for disturbing my baby comfort).
Yes, a fetus is really reacting to sounds. But since there is no evidence about what noise levels are safe for the baby and what effect loud sounds may have on baby’s wellbeing, I just let my gut instinct to be the best indication of whether something is too loud or not. I decided that there’s no reason to avoid a loud situation if it is making me happy and satisfied and if something is disturbing me (just like the discomfort in the night club), then I know what to do (just leave the noisy spot).
In most cases, just carrying on with the normal life sounds is best. This is what specialists say. The louder is a sound, of course, the more likely baby can hear it (try talking with a hand on your mouth – that’s what a baby hears inside the womb!). A barking dog or wailing car alarm are going to sound more distinct than quiet background music — but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. However, according to Life Before Birth, unexpected and too raucous noises can shock the baby. Just mind that the sounds the small cutie gets used to in utero will be less likely to startle her/him after birth.
The Fetal Hearing
Image Source: http://www.skinsheen.com 20th week pregnancy
It’s so natural for the expecting mom and dad to start talking and singing lullabies to the belly. The voices, tunes, and noises the fetus hears in utero do, in fact, help getting used to the environment. And getting familiar with mommy. (<3) Throughout the 1st and 2nd trimester, the baby’s ears start developing: the inner ear connects with the brain (responsible for processing sounds), and the minuscule bones of the middle ear (which sense the vibration of sound waves) form. Around the 16th week of pregnancy, the baby (at the size of an avocado, wow!) starts detecting some limited noises. Some of these are sounds that are not noticeable from the mom — the heartbeat, blood pumping through vessels, tummy gurgling, the whoosh of air in and out of the lungs. Over the next few weeks, though, the baby will hear more and more of the outside world – like the vacuum cleaner, slamming doors, barking dog, tunes (loud ones or played close to the baby bump). By week 24, babies have been shown to turn their heads in response to voices and noises – such as child’s cry or car alarm.
As the unborn baby can't see or touch the outside world, hearing still remains the main sense that helps the fetus prepare for the next big step – the birth and building bond with mommy. I’ve read somewhere that it’s good to stimulate the fetus with sounds – by talking to the belly, reading books aloud and even playing soft music (preferably Mozart for babies, Beethoven, babies' first Chopin & other classic music) .
Going Too Far – Fetal Acoustic Stimulation?
It’s true that too much of a good thing can actually become a bad thing. The developmental psycho-biologist William Fifer from the Columbia University warns against taking sound stimulation too far by buying a lot of “fetal acoustic stimulation” devices such as speakers designed to pipe sounds and music through the uterus. In fact, placing speakers directly on pregnancy abdomen could disrupt the baby’s sleep or even growth. So don't go too far, getting freak about this prenatal sound stimulation thing.
Instead of intense exercises for the baby's hearing, calm familiar sounds and music, in addition to mom’s voice, can help the baby more. If a particular piece of music or specific sounds are played for the baby during pregnancy, then after birth these sounds will recall baby’s “memories” in the womb, giving a sense of security, calmness and relaxation.
Soothing the Baby in the Womb - What is a Harmony Ball?
Bola Ball (also known as Harmony Ball) is a symbol of calm and relaxation for every mom-to-be. It has been used by pregnant women in many cultures for centuries. It is actually a small ball, typically made from sterling silver. It contains a tiny bell that emits very subtle but audible chimes when being shaken. This is why The Bola Harmony Ball (or bell) is worn as a long necklace – low against mom's baby bump. Originating in Bali and Mexico, harmony ball creates soothing, almost magical sounds for relaxation and meditation that might send you into another world. No wonder harmony balls are a surviving tradition from ancient times.
It is said that the soft chiming that Bola / Harmony Ball makes when the mom-to-be is moving, creates a soothing effect on the baby in the womb, and as well as the baby outside the womb. It is also supposed to help baby getting used to the outer world more easily and sleeping better with this Bola / Harmony Ball hooked over the baby cot. Worn after birth, it has the same relaxing effect, bringing comfort for the baby during nursing. Even older kids (like my 2-years-old girl) will enjoy the soft chiming when shaking this shiny necklace.
Harmony Ball is also known as the belly ball, belly bell and Bola ball. Hence, harmony balls are often called pregnancy Harmony Ball Pendants.
Why Choose Harmony Ball As a Gift for a Dear Pregnant Friend?
I love the way they look – as a stunning piece of jewelry which comes in different sizes, colors, and materials. They are really comfortable to wear and not heavy at all. The sounds are so gentle that they won’t bother the mom-to-be or the surrounding people (they could hardly detect a sound). But the baby hears those sounds because the necklace is on the level of the baby bump.
This unique pendant can easily be paired with other pieces of jewelry which make it a wonderfully thoughtful gift for every mom to be, especially as a gift for a pregnant friend of yours - for the time she announces the happy news or as a gift for the baby shower. Why? Because it could be given as a keepsake of timeless friendship and love to a dear friend who’s expecting a baby. Such a beautiful sentimental gift shows that you care about this very special step in your friend’s life; that you think ahead with a gift to be passed down for many years to come, with a wonderful story behind.
It is definitely not just a necklace. It is much more. It is one of the best gifts for any mom-to-be that I can think of, full of thoughts for the baby and the expecting mom (remember that pregnant women also need something to sooth their anxiety). It is also a great souvenir for moms after babies are born, for remembering those beautiful times. And we all know how new moms always feel sentimental about their pregnancy story and the very first year of their babies’ life, right? My conclusion- HARMONY BALL IS A PRICELESS PREGNANCY GIFT !