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Jan03

Fetal Movement

Introduction

Most women get their first fetal movements between 13-24 weeks. However there is no reason for you to worry if you do not get fetal movements as long as you are regular with the gynecology check ups on a regular basis. Veteran moms tend to notice these movements and kicks faster as compared to first time mom’s also thinner moms are likely to feel these movements faster as compared to those who are overweight. In the first trimester these movements are not so apparent however they become more profound in the second trimester. These experiences vary from women to women and there is no correct pattern. As long as there are no noticeable changes in the baby’s movements there is no need to worry.  Â

Reasons for fetal movement

The baby is growing rapidly and will require flexing and stretching his /her limbs. As the pregnancy progresses the movements start becoming more profound such as punching, kicking and rolling. Sometimes the flutters that you experience could also be due to gas or stomach upsets. Your baby can also move in response to music, noise or your emotions. A developing fetus can get hiccups and react to loud noices. Certain foods can also trigger movements in the baby as the fetus savors its mother’s meals picking up the tastes in the mother’s womb. There are times when the baby can get uncomfortable due to your posture and position and might start squirming inside. They say that reading and listening to books which uplift your mood can have positive effects on the baby. If you notice closely you will find the baby following a certain sleeping and waking pattern.  Â

Frequency of fetal movement

You can keep track of the fetal movement as the pregnancy advances. In the first trimester the movements are less as compared to the second trimester and in the third trimester the frequency and intensity of the fetal movements increase with more frequent and vigorous movements which start occurring in regular patterns which you can start identifying. At the start of the 28th week you can start counting your baby’s movements as this can help you identify any problems as well as help develop a bond with your baby. You can make a kick chart to count the number of kicks at the same time each day and record the time it takes to feel the movements. The advantage of keeping a regular record of the kicks is that if you notice a sudden drop in the movements you can check with the gynecologist for an internal check up to assure the safety of the baby. You must remember that the movements decrease after the 32nd week as the baby gets bigger and there is less space in the uterus to move.    Â