One of the most amazing things about being pregnant is feeling your baby move inside of you. This truly makes the experience feel more real, not that your growing belly doesn’t already!
Sometimes babies will move or kick to the sound of your voice or someone else’s voice. Other times music or a noise will get a baby to move. Baby movement is a big one for mommas, one that can cause excitement and anxiety at the same time.
Many women think they should feel the baby move when they start to show, but that’s not necessarily the case. Every woman begins showing at different stages, so that’s not the right pregnancy milestone to gauge baby movement.
Whether you’re not sure if your baby is moving enough or you just want to get your baby to move more, here are some things to consider and some helpful tips on how to accomplish baby movements.
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When Do You Feel Baby Move?
Doctors say you can begin to feel the baby move as early as 13 weeks to as late as 25 weeks. During that time the movements are mainly sporadic. Babies move as they grow and stretch and flex their limbs. If the baby is in an uncomfortable position, you may feel them squirm. Certain foods you eat can also impact the baby’s movement.
Doctors say it’s not until week 28 that you should start to be more conscious of your baby’s movements. You can use a kick chart to keep track. At around the same time every day, lie on your side and record how long it takes to feel 10 movements. As you keep track, you’ll be able to notice a pattern. If something begins to feel abnormal, call your doctor right away. As you make your way through the third trimester some women report increased movement, while others have decreased movement depending on the baby’s size and how much room there is to move.
How To Get Baby To Move
If you feel as though the baby isn’t moving as much as you’d like, there are things you can do to stimulate movement.
1. Eat A Snack
Babies respond to the food going into your body. Try a healthy snack with a glass of orange juice or another natural juice. The boost in your blood sugar could result in a few baby kicks.
2. Talk To The Baby
The soothing sound of your voice may be enough to register a movement. Experts say by week 24, many babies can respond to noises and voices. So, if you want to get baby moving, have a little conversation. The baby’s movement will be his or her way of responding to you.
3. Turn Up The Music (Just Not Too Loudly!)
If the sound of your voice isn’t getting a result, then perhaps music will. Play a song, just not too loud, and see if the baby responds. You can also try singing a lullaby if you’d like. The rhythmic sounds of either may be enough to get the baby moving.
4. Change Position
If your baby is a follower, he or she may move if you move. Start by lying on your back, and then gently move to your side. Try this a few times and see if baby plays along.
What To Do If Baby Isn't Moving Much
Many mothers-to-be immediately panic if they don’t feel the baby move as much as they think they should or as much as they did previously. While this may indicate an issue, that’s not always the case. The first thing is to calm down. You don’t want to raise your blood pressure and possibly cause a problem. It is normal for babies to take a break while they’re in utero. They need to rest just as much as you do as they prepare for their grand entrance. The birthing process is taxing on them, too! With that said, you still need to be conscious of the baby’s movement and trust your intuition. There are things you should do if you don’t feel the baby moving much in your belly.
1. Reduced Space May Reduce Movement
As the baby grows, he or she is running out of room to move. This may be why some women feel less movement as they go through their third trimester. Still, you should be feeling some movement on a somewhat regular basis.
2. Call Your Doctor
If you’ve tried several of the ideas mentioned above to get your baby to move and you still don’t feel enough kicks to satisfy you, call your doctor. Also call your doctor if you feel that something just isn’t right. Don’t wait for it to “pass.” Many times you can go to the doctor’s office and get a non-stress test to monitor the baby’s heart rate. This simply consists of the doctor using a monitor strip for about 20 minutes to see what’s going on with your baby. Depending on the results the doctor will send you home, do more tests like an ultrasound or perhaps send you to the hospital if the baby is indeed in distress. It’s always best to be extra cautious then to brush off any feelings of anxiety you may have about your baby’s movement.
When it comes to pregnancy, always trust your gut. If you feel like something is wrong, do not hesitate to call your doctor at any point. As you become a mother, you’ll realize that your intuition is usually right on target.
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