The first time you appreciate the presence of your baby inside you is around the fifth month of pregnancy which is referred to as Quickening. As the pregnancy advances you learn to appreciate it more easily and more number of times in a day.
The fetal movements are to be counted over a period of 12 hours (morning or night), usually after 30 weeks of pregnancy; whenever the baby is active. Ideally it should move at least 10 times in 12 hours. Alternatively, you could count the movements for an hour. You must perceive at least 3 movements in an hour each time.
During the last few weeks of pregnancy, the perception of fetal movement is relatively fewer and lighter than before which could be attributed to the relative increase in the size of the baby. Babies also have a sleep pattern where they are inactive, without any movements. So do not be alarmed if they have remained active at least for 12 hours in a day.
If you feel less than 10 movements over a 12 hour period, it is advisable to contact your gynecologist. Your baby’s heart rate and movements will be checked using a fetal monitor. This is called non-stress test (NST) or cardiotocography (CTG).
This is a brief overview of fetal movements during pregnancy. If you have any further queries, please reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org or to schedule an appointment with one of our doctors, click here. We would be happy to be of assistance.