Music therapy services provided by expertly trained members of the Louis and Lucille Armstrong Music Therapy team utilize live sound and music to replicate the auditory environment found in the womb. By re-creating a womb-like environment through sound and music, music therapy has been shown to deepen infant sleep-state, support infant self-regulation, assist in the stabilization of breathing and heart rates, enhance parent/infant bonding, sooth irritability, re-enforce feeding/sucking rhythms and weight gain, and promote a sense of safety during painful procedures.

For the full-term infant hospitalized in the NICU due to complex medical needs, music therapy interventions including: contingent singing, the use of harmonic and melodic instruments to provide a “blanket of sound”, tonal-vocal holding, songs of kin and lullabies may provide comfort, stability, promote bonding, establish social connections and foster healing via self-regulation, as well as address the developmental, physical and emotional needs of the infants. 

Many families of NICU infants experience stress, trauma and anxiety in relation to their infant’s hospitalization. Music psychotherapy interventions for families of NICU infants seek to encourage and support the caregiver-infant bonding process, provide trauma amelioration, offer a means of coping, supply a tangible way for caregivers to connect to their infant through songwriting/creating, and provide respite for the families.


“How I wonder what you are...”, Dr. Joanne Loewy sings to baby Isabelle and her new mom.

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