Infants Can Recognize Voices, Sounds, Study Finds

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infants recognize sound

Credit: Corbis

Not really sure if your infant is actually turning toward your voice or just randomly moving around?

A new study looking at baby brain scans shows, yep, infants can recognize human sounds.

LiveScience
reports at 3 months, babies already know what a laugh, yawn or cough sound like, and, when they hear sad sounds, such, as crying, their brains are active in emotional areas.

"It is probably because the human voice is such an important social cue that the brain shows an early specialization for its processing," Anna Blasi, of King's College London, and one of the study's researchers, tells the website. "This may represent the very first step in social interactions and language learning."

In a statement, researchers report he same part of the adult brain that reacts to human sounds lit up when babies heard human voices, too.

"We were very surprised to find that the area of the temporal cortex that responded to the human voice more than to environmental sounds was so similar in its location to the adult area showing the same specialization," Evelyne Mercure of University College London, also a researcher on the study to be published in Current Biology, tells LiveScience.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.