Nine months is a long time for baby to be sitting idle doing nothing. So baby gets busy. Turning, twisting, moving hands, hiccupping, changing sides, and sometime even somersaulting.
Baby movement during pregnancy is a wonderful experience, and it is something every mother-to-be looks forward to.
So, while you stock up on Pampers, you should also keep these baby kicking facts handy.
8 Must Know Facts about Baby Kicks
#1: Recognising the kick
If you're a first-time mother you probably won't recognise your baby's kick until the 24th week. Baby has been moving long before but that which you dismissed as wind is actually baby's movement. A second or third time mother can quickly recognise the flutters much earlier.
#2: So, why do babies kick again?
Cocooned inside you doesn't mean baby is unaware of what's happening outside. Noise, light and even certain foods can make baby respond. And babies are nothing but small adults. They need to stretch and move to relax. Baby will get rocked to sleep if you start moving. Yoga, meditation and relaxation exercises can also help lower your heart rate, which reduces baby's heart rate too.
#3: Kicking is normal. But how many times?
Every baby is different. So don't go comparing your friend's/ neighbour's/ relative's or even your own older baby's movements to your current pregnancy. On an average, a baby kicks somewhere around 15-20 times a day. The time can also vary. Some babies kick during daytime, some at night. You will notice an increase in activity after meals and when you sit down to relax.
#4: Should I start counting the kicks?
There is no defined pattern. You will automatically notice your baby's normal behaviour. But remember, as baby grows, these patterns can change. Only if you notice a dramatic difference or a reduction in movement should you be concerned.
#5: Learning to count baby kicks
The best way to notice and count kicks is by sitting down. Eat a snack, or have a cold drink and put your feet up. The intake will wake baby up and you should notice at least ten separate movements in the next two hours. Baby will roll, hiccup, kick, thump and even poke you. If you feel the movement has reduced contact your doctor as soon as possible.
#6: Baby's kicking lesser. Should I be worried?
Reduced movement doesn't always mean something is wrong. But why take a chance. Ask for a maternal and foetal assessment test to understand the cause for lesser movements. You will need an ultrasound and the doctor will also check to see how baby is responding to stimuli. Let the doctor's experience decide the next course.
#7: Will my baby's movement reduce after 36 weeks?
As baby grows, there is lesser room for movement, but you will continue to experience baby kicks during pregnancy. Kicks and rolls will reduce, but baby will start to explore different parts of the body, play with the umbilical cord and try and stretch.
#8: Does my baby's fetal movement indicate future behaviour?
Some studies show that active in-womb babies can continue to become active toddlers. But again, this isn't true for all babies. Each child is different and can display one kind of behaviour inside the womb and another after birth.
Baby movements are special and some mothers have been known to miss those feelings after their baby is born. Each day is a new step in the journey of your baby's growth and you must learn to enjoy each moment to have a stress-free pregnancy.Also, check out 8 tips you must know for a normal delivery.
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