Fetal Kick Counts

Dr. Neetu K. Sodhi at Bloom Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends all pregnant women utilize the time to bond with their baby and prevent potential stillbirth by tracking your baby’s movements. She advocates patients to use an at-home technique to monitor fetal kick counts during your third trimester.

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Fetal Kick Counts

Sometime between 18-25 weeks gestation, you will start to feel your baby’s movements.

At first, these movements may be indistinguishable from gas and other movements, but you will soon recognize your baby’s movements, or “fetal kicks”. After 28 weeks gestation, monitoring these fetal kicks is useful and can potentially identify certain problems, as well as reduce the risk of stillbirth.

Counting fetal kick counts is a great way to rest during the day and bond with your baby. To begin, select a time when your baby is usually most active and try lying on your left side- this will allow for better circulation to the baby.

Dr. Sodhi recommends that you time how long it takes you to feel 10 kicks, flutters, swishes, or rolls. Ideally, you want to feel at least 10 movements within 2 hours. You will likely feel 10 movements in less time than that.

When should I be concerned?

  • If you have followed the above recommendations and have not felt 10 kicks by the end of the second hour, wait an hour and try again. If after trying a second time, you do not feel 10 movements within 2 hours you should head directly to the hospital.
  • If you notice a significant deviation from this pattern over the course of 3-4 days.