Incubator Cover - The Influence of Light & Sound on Premature Babies

The Influence of Light & Sound on Premature Babies

Neonatal Intensive Care Units can be stressful environments. For premature babies, parents ànd medical staff. Bright lights, noise and medical examinations can make life stressful. Stress is exhausting and robs the baby of energy that should be used for development and growth.  So it is crucial to reduce these stress factors to the absolute minimum.  Developmental care strategies have been designed to reduce the stresses of the NICU, while promoting positive stimuli. This includes some of the following aspects:

  • Monitoring and reducing noise levels. The threshold for cochlear damage for adults is 80-85 decibels and premature babies will even have a lower threshold because they are more sensitive. Background noise recommendations for the nursery environment should not exceed an hourly Leq 40-45 DB (A).

  • Lighting should be adjustable . Too much light exposure can be extremely damaging, but continuous dim light may be just as bad to a newborn’s development. Adjusting lighting conditions to assist the developing sleep-wake rhythm should be encouraged. The adjustment level range of 100-600 lux is recommended.

  • Avoiding or reducing pain. Some comforting techniques can reduce stress responses. Also minimise painful procedures and provide appropriate pain relief measures.

  • Involving parents in the entire daily routine. The Family-centered care approach encourages parents in the primary caregiver role. This allows them to experience positive interactions with their baby and empowers them.

NICU Lightning
NICU Sound


Premature babies need an pro-developmental care NICU environment that helps them develop, with minimal disturbing influences and optimal pleasant stimuli. This concept of pro-developmental care has been used in NICU’s around the world, leading to an increase in the survival rates and long-term success of premature babies. Therefore, it’s important to closely manage light, sound and care conditions in the NICU environment. Little Hero can help you create such pro-developmental care environment. Modifications to the NICU environment and daily care practices can be simple and easily implemented.