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Feeling your baby kick for the first time is an important milestone for any expectant mother, particularly when it's your first pregnancy. It can be extremely exciting to have that spark of life inside of you confirmed, although it can also be somewhat difficult to understand what kind of sensation to expect, and when! 
 
We've come to realise that many women are unsure about monitoring their baby's movements, and so we thought that we would write an informative piece for reference. In this blog post, we'll outline the types of sensation that you can expect to experience at various points throughout your pregnancy. 

What will the movement feel like?

The first movements of your pregnancy, referred to as 'quickening', are usually described as a fluttering sensation. If this is your first pregnancy, you may find it somewhat difficult to identify, but should find it more and more easy to pinpoint as time passes. By the second and third trimesters, your baby's movements should be far more distinctive, as you will be able to prominently feel your baby's kicks and jabs.

When will I start to feel these movements?

The time frame for experiencing your baby's movements can vary quite substantially in the early stages, particularly when comparing first pregnancies with those of women who have experienced pregnancy before. The average time to expect a detection of movement, however, is between 18 and 20 weeks. As previously mentioned, this may take slightly longer if it's your first pregnancy, and may even come as early as 16 weeks if you've already had a baby. If you haven't experienced any movement by 24 weeks, you should consult your midwife so that she can check that all is well.

How often should my baby be moving?

Again, there are no set amount of movements that you should look out for, although you may find that your baby is most active between 9 PM and 1 AM. There is also evidence to show that by your third trimester, your baby will move around about 30 times each hour, although you may not discern all of these. There is no need to keep a chart of how many kicks you feel each day, although it is useful to familiarize yourself with your baby's movement patterns during waking hours. This will be different for everyone, so it's all about taking note of the movements and getting to know what's normal for your baby.The best way to identify these kicks and wriggles is when you're lying down, so try to put your feet up for a while so that you can really take notice of what you're feeling. If your baby's movement pattern changes suddenly and your are concerned, again, as your doctor or midwife to take a closer look.

Will I see my baby moving when I have an ultrasound scan?

If your baby is awake during your scan, then of course, you will be able to see your baby move! At First Encounters, we recommend receiving  your scan between 25 and 29 weeks, as your baby will be well-developed by this time, and will also have plenty of room to move around. If your baby has assumed and awkward position and we are unable to obtain a high-quality image, your sonographer may ask you to stroll around in order to encourage movement. If your baby is being particularly difficult on that specific day, we will offer you a complimentary re-scan on an alternative date. With selected scan packages such as the Deluxe 4D, you will receive a 5 minute DVD recording, which will allow you to relieve your unborn baby's movements for years to come. You can preview our 4D scan images and video recording in our gallery, to give you a better idea of just how detailed our recordings are.
 
If you would like to witness your own babies movements in stunning 4D imagery, book one of our scan packages today, or get in touch to find out more about our services. Further details about our scans and what they are able to reveal, can be found on our FAQs page.