Pregnancy is said to be the most beautiful phase of a person’s life. Where it is not just a woman’s belly that tends to grow out during this time but there are several changes that she goes through during this stage. Carrying a life inside your body makes you extra cautious about your every activity. Feeling the baby moving inside the womb and kicking provides the greatest joy to the parents and hence they tend to keep a track of the movements. Many times people feel that there is a change in the movements of the baby in the womb towards the end of the pregnancy. If you think that this is normal and is due to the increased size of the baby inside the womb, you need to beware. If the movements of your baby have decreased from normal then you might need to consult a doctor and seek medical advice.
Let us move forward and understand more about the baby’s movement inside the womb from Dr. Amina Khalid, Obstetrician Gynecologist, MBBS, MD (Obgyn).
Is It Normal For The Baby To Move Less Towards The End Of Pregnancy?
After experiencing morning sickness, nausea, fatigue and a constant urge to pee during the first trimester, the later trimesters on the pregnancy comes in with a bit of a relief. The fetal movements tend to vary in every mother and every baby as well. The fetal movements of two ladies getting pregnant at the same time might not match whereas one can also experience a difference in the fetal movements in their first and second child. A mother starts to feel the movements of her baby from 16 to 20 weeks of her pregnancy. One might notice that the baby’s movements keep on increasing till 32 weeks after which the frequency of movements tend to remain the same.
People have this myth that a baby moves less towards the end of pregnancy as there is less space available. Debunking this myth Dr. Khalid says, “The uterus that grows 5 times in size has less space for the baby? The same uterus that can carry twins and triplets?
By the end of the pregnancy the baby is more snugly placed inside the uterus. The type of movements that baby has might change but it would never affect the frequency and the intensity of the movements.
What is a normal movement?
Image Credits- Mama Natural
If your baby is moving less than you need to take it as an alarming sign instead of thinking that it is all okay. There is no universal number for normal movements of the baby inside the fetus as what’s normal for you might not be normal for the other. There will be certain times in a day where your baby might be the most active and there will be times when it wouldn’t be moving. This happens because even these babies need to sleep and take rest. One can not expect them to keep on making movements 27/7. A baby’s sleep cycle occurs regularly throughout the day for about 20 to 40 minutes. In rare cases this time can be extended to 90 minutes.
Image Credits- Medical News Today
If you are someone who has been experiencing decreased fetal movements towards the ending of your pregnancy that you need to take it as an alarming sign. In some cases where decreased movement for a period of time can be due to the physical activity of the mother, sexual intercourse or because the baby might be sleeping. If the baby isn’t moving as many times and with the similar intensity as it used to do for long then it can be a sign that you are in an impending danger. Only a mother can perceive if their baby inside the uterus is moving the way it used to. It is important to know that 50% of cases in which there was a stillbirth, perceived decreased fetal movements beforehand.
In such cases one must rush to their doctor and seek medical advice in order to ensure the good health of the mother and baby in its womb so that any further complications can be avoided.
This article is based upon a post by Dr. Amina Khalid, Obstetrician Gynecologist, MBBS, MD (Obgyn) on her instagram handle gynaikahealth.