One of the most thrilling experiences of pregnancy is to feel your baby kicking or moving inside your womb. There is no better proof that a new, exciting and energy-filled life is growing inside you. It also acts as a sure shot sign of your baby's health and well-being. Usually, one can feel the movements of the baby in the second trimester of pregnancy. But, if you are unable to feel any movement, or you felt it initially and you are not able to feel it now, it is advised to visit your obstetrician and get yourself examined.
What Does Baby Kicking In Womb Feel Like?
Usually, the movement of baby during pregnancy feels like butterflies, tumbling movements or nervous twitches. At an early phase, it is difficult to feel when the baby has moved or kicked, as it may seem like hunger pangs or indigestion. But, in the second or third pregnancy, it is relatively easier to distinguish between the movements of the baby and other unrelated events.
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If you are pregnant for the first time, by the end of second trimester or beginning of the third trimester, it is easy to feel and distinguish your baby's kicks and jabs.
How Often Will I Feel My Baby Kicking?
Baby moving in womb, during early phase of pregnancy is felt as few flutters now and then. Eventually, at the end of 2nd trimester, these fetal movements become stronger and more frequent. Some studies suggest that by the third trimester, these movements are felt about 30 times in an hour.
It has also been observed that babies are relatively more active during the mother's resting hours, like night time. You may even feel your baby's movements after meals, when you are nervous or when you have settled down or are resting.
(Also read: Pregnancy Guide: The Various Stages And Signs Of Labour)
What Movements Will I Feel In The Second And Third Trimesters?
As the weeks of pregnancy pass by, your baby's movements will increase and become more evident. A rough timeline of the baby's movements, is as follows:
12-15 weeks - This is the time for first movement of baby in the womb, which might go unnoticed
16-18 weeks - Movements become noticeable, as now the baby has relatively grown. At this time, the movements can be felt as flutters or a gas-like feeling
20-22 weeks - By this time, the baby is big enough and you may evidently feel quickening
24-28 weeks - You may feel twitches or tumbling
28-32 weeks - Your baby is moving more frequently and you may feel some kicks and jabs
34-38 weeks - As your uterus has become quite bulky, the movements are less intense and slow down.
(Also read: What Is A Normal Delivery? The 3 Stages Of The Classical Vaginal Birth)
Should I Count My Baby's Movements? And What If I Don't Feel My Baby's Movements?
Once you have established your baby's movements, it is good to keep a track of the same. Although fetal movements are not scientific proof of your baby's growth and development, they indirectly confirm that your baby is growing normally. They can be considered as indicators of baby's growth.
Ideal time for counting your baby's movements is resting time or post-meal. You should be able to count about 10-12 movements in a span of two hours. If your baby is less active or you are not able to feel any movement at all, it is better to consult your obstetrician for evaluation.
You should remember that it might be difficult to distinguish the fetal movements or to establish the waking and active hours of your baby. Lack of movements may be because your baby is sleeping. Hence, there is no need to worry if you haven't established your baby's movements by 24th week. You must consult your doctor if you are persistently unable to feel any movement at all by this time.
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