This is a question that has come up numerous times among brainwave entrainment users and in producer circles, and having just returned from a scan for my wife, who is nearly 7 months pregnant, I thought it worth penning a post to cover this matter and provide my thoughts and experiences.
(That's our baby waving in the scan picture to the right, by the way.)
We recommend that those who suffer from seizures and/or take psychotropic medications should not use binaural beats, quite simply because rapidly increasing or decreasing brainwave stimulation in such people, who may already be experiencing higher than normal Beta wave levels, for example, could trigger a seizure or an episode of mania.
Where pregnant women are concerned we sit on the fence somewhat, cautious to confidently recommend them. But why?
Are Binaural Beats Unsafe For Pregnant Women?
There is no evidence suggesting that binaural beats are dangerous for pregnant women. Period. There has never been a case of a negatively affected pregnancy attributed to brainwave entrainment of any kind.
In fact, as a qualified sound engineer, I'd say it's physically impossible for a foetus to be negatively affected in any way by a pregnant woman listening to frequencies in this way.
But the reason we don't outrightly recommend binaural beats to pregnant women is because this natural science is yet to be evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or any other regulated governing body.
So in short, we need to protect ourselves against getting sued by any pregnant woman who might claim that an unrelated pregnancy problem was related to listening to our binaural beats. It's as simple as making sure we stay on the right side of the law.
How My Wife Successfully Used Binaural Beats During Pregnancy
My wife has been listening to Theta and Alpha binaural beats meditations during her pregnancy to relax her back and shoulder muscles and help her mental balance amidst the flurry of unpredictable hormones.
Our latest 7-month (6 months 2 and a half weeks to be exact) scan shows a very healthy baby of just over 1kg; 800g being a healthy weight.
The doctor is very pleased with the health of my wife, too, who she says has good blood pressure and healthy lungs.
My wife is 35, and prior to the tests and scan we had just returned from holiday on a 13 hour flight. She was jet lagged and had hardly slept. In my opinion the binaural beats meditations have done her the world of good.
But still, we must not recommend that pregnant women use our recordings, because even though I'd recommend them for my own family, as a professional vendor, I cannot do so for my own customers.
If you decide to make the personal choice that you do want to follow my wife's lead and listen while you're pregnant, stick to the aforementioned frequency zones (Alpha and Theta). Delta will be fine too, but avoid Beta as you don't want to risk increasing your heart rate, and certainly don't listen to any gamma recordings – not that we sell those anyway.
It's entirely up to you. As I said, we have to say that we “don't recommend” binaural beats during pregnancy to legally protect ourselves in light of pending FDA evaluation.
But as we know, all binaural beats do is mirror brain states and produce brainwaves that we naturally produce anyway. So how can this possibly be harmful to you or your baby?
**Update: Our baby girl was born at a healthy 8lbs. She loves music too, so maybe it was our binaural beats she heard from inside the womb.