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Your Baby’s Movements in Pregnancy

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What are normal movements for an unborn baby in pregnancy?

You may feel your baby move between 16 and 22 weeks of pregnancy. For a first pregnancy, you may  not become aware of movements until you are more than 20 weeks pregnant. Early movements may be felt as kick, jerks, bubbles, ripples or roles.

As your baby develops, both the number and type of movements will change along with your baby’s activity pattern. Your baby may have sleep patterns that last between 20 and 40 minutes, and are rarely longer than 90 minutes.

The number of movements tend to increase until 32 weeks of pregnancy and then should stay the same

There is no specific number of movements which is normal; a reduction or a change in pattern of your baby’s movements is what is important.

What can cause my baby to move less?

  • Alcohol
  • Certain Drugs
  • Smoking
  • If baby is unwell
  • In Rare Cases if baby has a condition affecting the nerves or muscles

What factors can affect me feeling my baby move?

  • You are less likely to be aware of your baby’s movements when you are active or busy
  • If the placenta is at the front of your uterus (womb)
  • The position your baby is in

What should I do if I feel my baby’s movements are reduced or unchanged?

Less than 24 weeks pregnant 

If by 24 weeks you have never felt your baby move, you should contact your midwife or GP, who will check your baby’s heart beat

Between 24 and 28 weeks pregnant 

You should contact your midwife or GP, who will check your baby’s heart rate

Over 28 weeks pregnant  

You must immediately contact the hospital on 01384 244356

The investigation that we undertake usually provide reassurance that all is well. Most women who experience one episode of reduction in their baby’s have a straightforward pregnancy and go on to deliver a healthy baby. If there are any concerns about your baby, your doctor and nurse will discuss this with you. You may also require some follow up investigations