Dr. Szmuc explains when a pregnant woman will start to feel her baby move. He describes kick counts and discusses why these are important during the third trimester of pregnancy.
The baby typically starts kicking hard enough or moving hard enough at about 16 to 18 weeks along in pregnancy. Most women experience this as gas pains as they tell me. So if you are experiencing gas pains around 18 weeks and you think you are not feeling the baby yet, you probably are.
You want to concentrate, slow down, lie down, quiet the room and just feel for those gas pains. That’s the normal time to experience the movement. As we go further on the typical kicks will start as your baby gets stronger and bigger.
We like to have ladies evaluate their baby every day while they are at home, and we do this by what’s called kick counts. We ask them to lie down somewhere quiet on their left side, typically after eating because the baby tends to be more active at that point.
We ask them to make sure they can feel their baby move at least five times within an hour. If they don’t, we would ask them to repeat that hour and still if there aren’t the five movements we ask them to call us and we’ll do some further testing. By the kick counts that tells us the baby is getting a nice blood supply and oxygen supply.
About Dr. Edward D. Szmuc, M.D., F.A.C.O.G.:
Dr. Edward D. Szmuc, M.D., F.A.C.O.G., is board certified with the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is a Fellow of American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is Chairman of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Banner Desert Medical Center in Tempe, Arizona. Dr. Szmuc earned his M.D. from the Medical College of Ohio in Toledo and completed his residency at Boston University School of Medicine in Massachusetts.