Fetal Movement

Fotolia_12493455_SVery early in pregnancy your baby’s movements may feel like the fluttering of a butterfly or gas bubbles.  Otherwise, fetal movement can usually be felt around 17-20 weeks, but can be later in first time moms. Babies go through sleep-wake cycles, so there will be some times of inactivity lasting 10-70 minutes even. 

Fetal Kick Counts: Checking kick counts once a day after 28 weeks of pregnancy is an easy way to evaluate fetal well-being.  Choose the time of day when your baby is the most active or eat a snack with a large glass of water and begin timing fetal movements.  You should be resting in a semi-sitting position or on your left side lying down with your hands lying over your abdomen (over your baby).  Fetal movements include rolling, stretching, kicking, jabbing, punching, hiccupping or flutters.  In a healthy, awake baby, 10 movements are usually felt within 60 minutes.  The room should be quiet, without much distraction so you can concentrate on your baby’s movements.

You should call our office if 10 movements have not been felt within a two hour period of evaluating Fetal Kick Counts.

The above information is provided to you as a guideline.  Most babies are active at certain time(s) of the day or night and will have a typical pattern of movement all their own.  If you find that your “normal” amount of movement changes or is less than what you are used to, follow these instructions and call your doctor.   If you have any questions regarding these instructions, please feel free to call and talk to one of our nurses at (816) 531-2111.