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The First Kick - What Does It Feel Like?

Alison Wood |26, February 2013


Every pregnant mom waits for it. The experienced mothers gush about it. Soon-to-be grandmas ask about it. The first kick. When women gaze upon the positive results of their pregnancy test, myriads of thoughts rush through their minds. How will I tell my family? Will I be a good mother? Am I ready? They have accepted the fact that there is a new, little life growing within their wombs. But, it's only a head knowledge.

Then it happens. "What was that?" you ask yourself smiling. Could it be?

Then, it happens again. You are sure of it now. It is your little one! She's letting you know she is really in there! Emotions overwhelm you as a head knowledge becomes a heart knowledge. Your mommy hormones take over, and you begin preparing for this new little life. It is not longer a faraway dream.. You felt her move!

When does a pregnant woman begin to feel the baby's movements?

Typically, between 16 and 22 weeks a woman will begin feeling the kicks and movements of her growing bambino. Second and third-time moms may experience the twitches and flutters earlier in pregnancy.

What does it feel like?

Most women describe the first fetal movements as butterflies or popcorn popping inside them. At the beginning, movements are soft, light and sporadic. As the pregnancy progresses, the movements become stronger and more predictable.

"I was always embarrassed during my 8th month of pregnancy. My belly was huge, and every time my baby kicked and moved, so would my tummy. I thought everyone would notice and stare, but most of the time, I was the only one that noticed!" laughs one mom.

"One of the biggest things I miss about being pregnant is feeling my baby move within me. It was so sweet to know this little life was inside me thriving and depending on me. I would constantly press on my belly throughout the day to see where the baby was. During my ninth month, I could normally tell if it was a foot or the baby's head. It was sweet and fun, "recollects a mom.

When should I worry about baby's movements?

Monitoring your baby's jabs, swishes and kicks are always beneficial after 28 week of pregnancy. By this time, you are sure it's not indigestion and your little one has established somewhat of a routine.

Baby's typically are more active at night due to your blood-sugar levels dropping. They also tend to be more active if you have consumed sugary drinks, caffeine or have had a more physically taxing day.

Take time to lay down and focus on your baby's movements. Keep records of these movements in a notebook or on the computer for future reference. To make it easier and more convenient for you, pick a time of day when your baby is moving around a good bit. Lie on your left side or sit in a comfortable position and focus on baby's movements. You want to record at least 10 movements in a two-hour period. Normally, you will get ten movements in as little as 15 minutes, but two hours allots for the times when babies are still healthy, but a little more sluggish.

If you monitor you baby's movements, and less than 10 movements are felt during a two-hour period, contact your obstetrician immediately. Kick counts, a shorter term for monitoring baby's movements, are very helpful in signaling babies in stress or other problems that may go undetected during pregnancy. Not only will monitoring your baby's movements create a closer-knit bond between you and baby, but it will help aid you in knowing if there are any unseen issues with your little one.

"At the end of my pregnancy, I noticed my baby was not moving as much as normal. To calm my anxieties, I got out of bed and ate some cookies and drank some juice. Still nothing. After pacing and worrying, I woke up my husband to tell him we needed to go to the hospital. As he was preparing to leave, I went into labor! So, that was my first sign that labor was coming, decreased baby movements." informs one mother.

Enjoy those special taps, punches and kicks, but also use them to the advantage of your baby's health. Those somersaults and flips are more important than many people think! Take time to enjoy them as they help create a pre-birth, close-knit bond between you and your upcoming arrival. Don't forget to monitor your baby's movements as you enter the third trimester of pregnancy. Your baby will thank you for it!

Alison Wood is a stay-at-home mom of six and freelance writer and blogger. She enjoys raising her six children and desires to share her experiences to help other mothers.

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Guest Oct 2, 2014 09:47:52 PM ET

I was laying on the couch feeling my lower stomach pushing in a little bit. I have suspected I am pregnant for a while now. But, all tests came back negative. I was pushing on my right side though, and felt something push up super fast then was gone. It pushed right into my hand though. Could that be a baby kick? My stomach has been bubbly ever since.

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