Foetal Kick Counts – Importance and How to Perform
When you feel the baby kick for the first time, that is one of the most treasured moments of your life. The sonography scans and the enlarged tummy can only do so much, but the first actual kick is what seals the deal for you, and makes you realize that you have a living breathing baby inside you. Carrying out kick counts at 38 weeks or even before that is pretty essential, not just to be connected with your child, but to get a good idea of his growth and progress within the womb.
Why Is Foetal Kick Count Important?
You cannot always jump to the clinic and get a quick ultrasound to check how your baby is doing. Getting to know your baby better and seeing whether his movements are in line with the expectations can be easily done by keeping a track of his kicks. For a woman whose baby starts kicking a lot all of a sudden or stops doing so, these could be easy signals to inform the doctor and get any checkup done if needed. Apart from that, communicating with your child and seeing him respond via the kicks helps develop the bond between the both of you, early on.
When Can You Feel the Baby’s Kick and What Does It Feel Like?
The initial movements begin to appear after 4 months and until 25 weeks or so. The kicks start to get evident once you have completed 6 months of pregnancy. The initial ones might be quite a surprise for first-time mothers and you will soon get used to it.
When Should You Start Counting Kicks?
Kick counting should ideally begin after completing 7 months of pregnancy and should stay until the baby is delivered.
What Can Prevent You From Feeling Kicks?
Failing to do kick counts at 35 weeks of pregnancy could make some mothers worried. But this could happen if you aren’t concentrating on the kicks. At times, the placenta’s position, as well as any extra weight, could cushion the kicks and make them less evident to you.
How to Do Kick Counting
While proceeding ahead to count the kicks your baby does, it makes sense to know certain factors beforehand and opt for moving ahead accordingly.
1. Choose a Good Time
You can’t expect your baby to be active whenever you want him to. Having spent numerous months with him, you might have a good idea of a time period when your baby is the most active. Choose that time instead of any other when the baby might be resting and will rarely kick as much. Also, on a certain day, your baby might choose to be a little calmer than usual, too.
2. Get in the Right Position
Counting the kicks correctly requires you to assume a position favourable for doing so. The best ones in that regard are either to sit straight or lie down on your back or on the left side. Be completely relaxed, take a deep breath, and concentrate on doing your best to feel the baby’s kicks. Avoid combining any other activity with this since it can be quite easy to miss out on the little one’s movements.
3. Count Kicks up to 10
Once you are in the right position and the kicks are being felt, keep a track of how long does it take for your baby to kick around 10 times. This is not going to be as quick as you think and can take anything from around half an hour to even up to two hours. Try not to fall asleep in the midst of this and be patient with your child. If you have multiple children, you still need to follow the same technique.
Tips for Counting Kicks During Pregnancy
In order to help you with counting your little one’s kicks properly throughout your pregnancy, there are a few tips you can make use of to assist you with it.
- Make sure you allot time every day to count the kicks of your baby. Try to keep the time identical throughout, so that your baby falls into that schedule as well. For some women, it can be after they have had lunch or for others, it could be after their evening coffee.
- At times, the movements and the kicks might feel a bit too slow. In such scenarios, your baby can be coaxed to get a little more active by lying down on the left side. This increases the blood flow and pushes the baby to kick around. Some mothers have noticed that drinking a glass of sweet juice can get a baby excited.
- The frequency of sharp kicks tends to reduce as the child grows up since the constricted uterus does not leave him enough space to move his legs. Most babies tend to roll within the womb at this stage.
You can even make use of the following chart to note down the kicks properly. Write the time when you begin counting and make a mark in the row to note the time that has passed since the kick. Do this for each week. We’ve provided a sample below for week 36.
When Should You Worry?
If your baby fails to kick at least 10 times in about 2-3 hours for multiple days, it might be necessary to contact your doctor. Ideally, as the pregnancy progresses, the kick count should increase, reach a plateau, and then reduce as you reach your due date.
Whether carrying out kick counts at 34 weeks or at the completion of six months, it is necessary to know what to expect and be in tune with the baby’s moods. Getting to know your little one through his kicks can be a wonderful experience and an easy way to assure yourself that your baby is completely safe and healthy inside you.