We get asked a lot of questions
here at First Encounters Ultrasound, but perhaps the most common query of all concerns the safety of the scans that we provide. Many expectant parents feel slightly apprehensive about the idea of undergoing an ultrasound scan for fear that it will have a detrimental effect on the mother and/or her unborn baby.
The good news is that, in 30 years of study and research, ultrasound has not been found to cause any harm whatsoever to mother or baby. As the name suggests, ultrasound technology relies on sound waves, which are perfectly safe at the intensity used for the purposes of pregnancy scanning.
Ultrasound scans are now the norm throughout the UK; even if you don't visit the First Encounters clinic for a private scan, you will likely undergo two NHS ultrasound scans over the course of your pregnancy to check on your baby's development.
But what about 4D scans?
Most of the parents who enquire about the safety of our scans are referring specifically to our 4D scan packages; that is, the scans that capture 3D footage like this:
A lot of people assume that 4D scans must use a higher intensity than standard 2D scans, if not a different type of technology altogether. Many of the parents-to-be that we encounter have already received one ultrasound scan by the time we speak to them, and even some of these people are concerned about the side effects of our 4D scanning equipment.
If you are harbouring any such concerns yourself, allow us to put your mind at ease: 4D ultrasound scans have been shown to be completely safe for both mother and baby. Our 4D probe operates at the same intensity as our 2D scanning equipment, emitting sound waves into the body and creating an image based on the echoes it hears. The technology actually has a lot in common with radar!
Ultrasound scans do not expose you or your baby to radiation and they are generally painless. The only side effects you may experience is a small amount of discomfort as we run the probe over your skin or insert it into your body.
None of the ultrasound scans we offer have been shown to have any harmful effect on human beings, so when you and your unborn child pay us a visit, you can rest assured that our service is not putting either of you in any danger whatsoever.