Babies can kick, squirm and hiccup in the womb. New parents may be unsettled by some of the baby's movements, but many are very common. As your baby develops, it will move around more in the womb. However, babies do not all move the same. Some babies are more active than others. Knowing how your baby is developing each trimester can help you know what movement is normal and what should cause alarm.
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The first trimester is a frenzy of activity, but you won't be able to feel it. Following conception, the baby is just a cluster of cells. However, by the end of the first trimester often doctors can find a heartbeat. Although there is a lot of activity taking place in the womb, you will not detect anything. The baby is buried and cushioned inside of your womb, too deep for you to know when it moves.
In the second trimester, mom can begin to feel each kick and turn from inside the womb. By the fifth month, there is noticeable movement from the baby. However, the movement will be irregular because the baby is not large enough for you to catch every wiggle or punch. Around this time you may notice that your baby will move in response to sound. Near the end of the second trimester, your baby can be very active following a meal when the food causes an increase in your blood sugar. This will give your baby plenty of energy to move around.
In the last months of the pregnancy, your baby can gain about half a pound a week. You will be able to notice the baby's movements more because it is more developed. The baby's movements will be visible outside of the mom's abdomen. Since your baby's movement is more apparent, your doctor may ask you to keep track of the baby's movement. Near the end of the pregnancy the baby will turn its head downward.
Causes for Concern
During the fifth month if you do not feel any movement, schedule an appointment with your doctor for an ultrasound. It could just be that your due date is off a little and throwing off the developmental time line you're following. Also, in the third trimester your doctor may ask you to keep track of movement. Follow your doctor's directions clearly. Contact your doctor immediately if you chart infrequent or decreased movement. It is suggested that a baby in the third trimester should move about 10 times in two hours. However, each baby is different. Communicate with your doctor so you will be educated on causes for concern.
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