Pregnancy Milestones

From the moment you find out you’re pregnant you probably begin wondering about all of your firsts from the first time you get to see your baby on the sonogram to the first time you get to hold your baby. When your little bundle of joy arrives there will be a road of first milestones to look forward to. While waiting 9 months may seem like an eternity, here is a list of first pregnancy milestones you can look forward to until the moment you finally meet your new baby!

 

Hearing Baby’s First Heart Beat

Fetal heart rateHearing your baby’s heart beat for the first time can be such a heart warming experience. Your baby’s heart will start beating at around 6 weeks gestation, which is typically about when most women discover they are pregnant. Your baby’s heart beat can be picked up and heard on an early ultrasound performed vaginally by approximately 8 weeks. This is when most women commonly get their first ultrasound to confirm their pregnancy.

Your doctor will perform routine checks using a fetal Doppler to detect the heart beat from as early as 10 weeks on at your regular prenatal checkups. For the expectant mother wanting to hang on to that precious sound of a life within there are fetal dopplers that can be purchased for home use.

Feeling Baby’s First Kicks

http://www.dreamstime.com/-image3079091One of the many exciting things to look forward to during pregnancy is the first time you feel your baby kick. It’s such a magical moment and a reassurance that there is a tiny being just waiting to meet you. It’s very common for women to feel a fluttering sensation early on during their first trimester that could be mistaken for fetal movements. While every woman is different and some do feel baby’s movements sooner than others, this is normally just gas.

Some women begin to feel genuine fetal movements as early as their fourth month somewhere between 13-16 weeks. Most women won’t begin to feel real noticeable kicks until about 20 weeks. For women who have already had a baby, they may feel baby’s movements sooner for subsequent pregnancies.

Baby’s Gender Reveal

Gender reveal sonogramIf you like to keep things a surprise, you’ll find out what you are having when you deliver. For those of you who just can’t wait, baby’s gender can be detected on an ultrasound as early as 16 weeks depending on baby’s position. Most doctors don’t perform an ultrasound for gender predictions until closer to 20 weeks for better accuracy. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine a baby’s sex depending on their position in the uterus and you just have to wait and see.

Sonograms that show a baby’s gender are generally 95% accurate. Many women have an intuition as to what they are expecting. There are many old wives tales that claim to predict baby’s sex and some people swear by them. Actual tests, such as amniocentesis, can be performed (usually to check for other issues) to determine baby’s gender and are typically 98% accurate. These tests do carry some risk and should always be consulted with a physician.

There will be many things to look forward to during pregnancy, while others not so much. Knowing when you can expect these pregnancy milestones can help make the moment that much more special while awaiting the arrival of your sweet baby!

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