What are the few things every parent must know and expect about the foetal heartbeat during pregnancy?
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Fetal Heartbeat

What are the few things every parent must know and expect about the foetal heartbeat during pregnancy?  

Since you found out you were pregnant, one of the first milestones that you are likely to have been eagerly waiting for is hearing the thump, thump of your baby's heartbeat. It's one of the most reassuring sounds that gives extreme joy to the parents. However, detecting a foetal heartbeat is very difficult, if not impossible, for the human ear.

But some expecting mothers claim they can hear their baby's heartbeat through their belly. This may be possible in a quiet room during the second or third trimester. If you are worried about your baby's heartbeat, your safest option is to reach out to your doctor. They can schedule a sonogram to reassure you that your baby's heartbeat is normal.

You might not be able to hear a baby's heartbeat at your first ultrasound. Most commonly, this is because it's too early in the pregnancy. This doesn't necessarily mean there's a problem. The foetal heartbeat may first be detected by a vaginal ultrasound as early as 5 1/2 to 6 weeks after gestation.

By six weeks, your baby's heart is now beating 110 times a minute and has four hollow chambers, each with an entrance and an exit to allow blood to flow in and out of each chamber. In just two more weeks, that number will rise to 150-170 beats a minute.

Throughout pregnancy, your baby's heart will continue to develop. A foetal heartbeat starts at between 90 and 110 bpm during the initial weeks of pregnancy. It will increase and peak at around weeks 9 to 10, between 140 and 170 bpm. After that, a normal foetal heartbeat is considered between 110 and 160 bpm in the second and third trimester.

With all this growth, you will probably be able to hear your baby's heartbeat for the first time around week 9 or week 10 of pregnancy, though it can vary a bit. Around 12 weeks into your pregnancy, you have nearly reached the end of the first trimester, and your obstetrician will use an ultrasound device known as a foetal Doppler to check for your baby's heartbeat.

Keep in mind, your baby's heartbeat can vary throughout pregnancy and at each prenatal appointment. Your doctor will monitor your baby's heartbeat at each prenatal appointment as your doctor may be concerned about your baby's heartbeat, if it is too slow, too fast, or is irregular.

That tell-tale thump of a baby-to-be's heart is one of the most exciting sounds expecting parents can hear. It is a priceless and unforgettable feeling for every parent, and they will cherish it throughout their life.


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