To think these new guidelines on fetal movements may cause a lot of undue worry.

(71 Posts)
scottishegg Mon 06-May-13 18:06:20

Hi all, I am currently 34 weeks pregnant with my third child, I already have a DS who is 5 and a DD who is 2.
With both my previous pregnancies my midwives have told me that as long as I was getting 10 fetal kicks/ movements a day then not to worry.
My DS was very active in the womb however my DD wasnt an active baby at all ( she makes up for it now though!!) and I literally only got between 10/20 movement a day if I was lucky.
With this current pregnancy I have been told that the baby needs to move 10 times an hour or without a doubt they definately need to move 10 times within 2 hours or you need to seek medical advice, to me this puts undue worry on mothers especially if they have been feeling frequent movements and seems like it may put pressure on the NHS/ midwife services. I dont understand why they have changed their views on fetal movement, I appreciate that it could possibly save lives and I appreciate that even if this change helps one baby then there is a benefit but I am just wondering why after all these years they have changed their policy which has seemed to work well in the past.

My older two (now ages 24 and 19) hardly moved at all, maybe 10 all day like you said. They were wedged in pretty tight as I'm so short, poor babies, breech too.

Cloverer Mon 06-May-13 18:17:53

It is a bit silly to focus on the number of movements as these will be different for different babies, and depend on positioning and the positioning of the placenta. What is important is getting to know what is normal and getting checked if it changes.

However, I do think there needs to be more awareness of this issue as the UK has really awful foetal death rates, something like 17 babies are stillborn every day and you are much more likely to lose your baby to stillbirth than cot death - and yet when I was pregnant I got loads of advice about SIDS and nothing about foetal movement and when to get checked out if I had concerns.

RandomMess Mon 06-May-13 18:20:11

That's really odd, I've only seen written and promoted that any changes in your normal pattern of movements mean that you should go and be monitored.

CockyFox Mon 06-May-13 18:27:05

At 39 weeks DD stopped moving for a day. She rolled over then stopped. I went to hospital her heart was decelerating from normal to 80bpm.
They sent DH home for my labour bag and immediately took me down for an induction and kept me on the monitor until she was born the decelerating was due to a trapped cord.
So I would say YABU as yes there is more worry but me worrying about movement saved my daughter's life.

loofet Mon 06-May-13 18:31:43

I think the advice should be if baby moves a lot less than usual or stops moving all together then go straight to hospital and not that they should have to do a set amount. All my babies had quiet days towards the end, they were big babies and run out of space! Some babies also just move less than others so I think it should be down to whatever is normal for your baby.

BreasticlesNTesticles Mon 06-May-13 18:31:56

YY to a change in movements DD1 barely moved. DD2 was very active, realised I hadn't felt her move all day at around 7 months and was taken straight in and given a very thorough exam. She had moved and was wriggling but I could no longer feel her.

The midwives were very insistent though that if I felt it happening again I was to go in, never worry I was troubling anyone and should always get it checked out. There needs to be more emphasis on this I think.

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Midori1999 Mon 06-May-13 18:46:14

I agree with lunaticfringe. Many women are unaware of when to get checked out and often I see/hear women saying that babies are quieter towards the end as room is restricted, which isn't really true and you should get checked out if movement reduces.

I'd rather be worried and have a living baby and I'm sure most women would feel the same.

scottishegg Mon 06-May-13 19:17:18

Thanks all I suppose there must have been a reason why the movement policy changed and Im so glad that babies have been saved but I was always told as long as your getting regular movements throughout the day then not to worry, obviously if your baby hasnt moved for a few hours then understandably medical help needs to be saught but I think that 10 movements in1/ 2 hours is very precise and could make mums worry more than they should.

EggsMichelle Mon 06-May-13 19:20:01

My DS is 5months and I was told 10 times a day, not hour. That would of be impossible as he would sleep 3-4hrs at a time in the womb.

5madthings Mon 06-May-13 19:21:48

Yabu i agree with lunatic and actually its better if a mum worries and gets checked out to be told all is fine, far better than the alternative.

Any change in babies movements should be noted and its better to grt checked out if you have any concern. I goy checked a few times with dd (no 5) my.placenta was at the front so i didnt feel her movements as much but my midwife and the hospital were always happy to check all was well.

Springforward Mon 06-May-13 19:22:58

In this pregnancy I've been told that it's not the absolute number of movements which matters, but rather whether baby has shown it's usual pattern of movements that day. If not, they've said to lie down on left side for 2 hours, 10 movements in that time indicating that all is well. I think that's the current RCOG guideline?

Mums should worry more. We are losing far too many babies in this country from stillbirth and awareness is everything.
When I was expecting dd2 a work colleague had a friend expecting her 4th. She was about 36 weeks pg. Very experienced and chilled out mum and she WAS aware of the importance of movements. She rang her husband and told him she would be late him from work because she was going to stop at the hospital and get them to check the ba who had been 'quiet'. Husband said 'don't be daft, don't wait, go NOW'. So she did and monitoring revealed baby was in trouble. Fortunately a c-section saved that baby's life - but it was the awareness of it's parents that made the difference.

Mums in the third trimester SHOULD be worried about stillbirth, should be as pro-active in avoiding it as they are for cot death after birth.

SwishSwoshSwoosh Mon 06-May-13 19:24:17

I think it is better to be a bit worried then get checked and reassured than the other way round.

I think what spring forward says makes a bit more sense. Im all for awareness of movements and I'm glad that my placenta is further back this time round so I am feeling much more, but I wouldn't actually be ablevot go about my day if I was waiting for at least 10 movements per hour/2 hours. sometimes I don't think about the baby for a good few hours while I work/ care for dd/ read, sleep etc - not like last time when I was thinking about the baby every nano second!

I agree that it's the type of movements and any change in movement that's more important.

there definitely needs to be more awareness of telling your midwife immediately you notice any changes. it's good to say "if your baby hasn't veen doing its normal movements or they've slowed down or changed in any way (because sometimes more movements than normal are a sign of distress) then ask the mw"

dictating how many movements is daft because as you say, wonen will worry too much or lose count and panic!

and babies definitely don't move less as they get bigger - they might change the way they move because of lack of space, but they do not slow down.

Andcake Mon 06-May-13 19:37:23

The varying guidelines can be confusing. But I got the same message from mw to come in if any thing had changed and even if things were ok that time to go in again on any new occasion and not to assume things are ok if it had been before. As I was worried about lossing count in the day I used a count the kicks bracelet to help www.countthekicks.org.uk/ was happy to but it as it was for charity - we have a really bad stillbirth record in the uk. It's shaming.

Maggie111 Mon 06-May-13 19:38:08

My son is 2 weeks and the consultant at the hospital told me 10 times in 24 hours.

MiaowTheCat Mon 06-May-13 19:44:21

I just got told if there was any change in the frequency or if I became concerned to ring and go in. Although as I got further on I didn't get kicks as such (granted I only made it to 36 weeks) - you still should be getting squirms, arse wriggles, limbs jammed in uncomfortable places and enough to make you realise someone's partying down in there. I think intuition and gut feeling shouldn't be underestimated either - both times I've delivered prematurely and both times I've known it was going to happen a day or so before (kind of like an animal nesting up and hiding away).

redwellybluewelly Mon 06-May-13 19:45:43

I didn't go in when I felt a lack of movement late in pregnancy. I live with that decision every.single.day.

By the time I went in she was in distress, the doctor on duty was new, junior, no senior staff on weekends and didn't act fast enough to get her out. Two weeks in NICU, first eight days in a coma, long term disability and seizure issues.

We should be made more aware of a change of movements, improve maternity standards in general and perhaps even change protocol for weekend practice (massive teaching hospital, best in region) so that at all times better decisions are taken.

redwellybluewelly Mon 06-May-13 19:47:27

Oh and like miaow above I knew something was very very wrong and partway through the induced labour I knew exactly when she was deprived of oxygen (though I just thought she qss in trouble), even then they didn't take me seriously.

sparklekitty Mon 06-May-13 19:51:34

I was told 10 movements a day and my DD is 7mo. I went in for a check for reduced movements as she was a little wriggler, could feel her all day every day from 15 weeks. One day she was much quieter so went to check.

MW there asked if I'd had 10 movements that day, I said yes and she told me it was all fine, wasn't going to bother checking, I had to explain that even though I'd had the 10 her movements were massively reduced compared to normal. Luckily all was fine but I was a bit annoyed!

eccentrica Mon 06-May-13 19:56:58

Oh god, my daughter (now 2) was really lazy in the womb. I think I had to go to the maternity unit about 6 times in the third trimester, when I hadn't felt 10 movements in a day. She was fine every time and would always start moving around once I was hooked up to the machine. My mum apparently had the same with all of us - all lazy babies.

I am now 5 wks pregnant with DC2, if this baby is anything like her and these are the new guidelines I'll be in every bloody day!

eccentrica Mon 06-May-13 19:58:56

I should add I had an anterior high placenta (at the front), apparently that cushioned it so I wouldn't feel a lot of her movements. I could see on the machine and on scans that she was moving, but couldn't feel it happening. Could only feel the kicks to the side.

I remember asking if hiccups counted as movements as she had them every day. They thought I was a bit odd grin

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