Being pregnant is pretty exciting for a mom. Isn’t it? One of the milestones that most pregnant women wait for is to hear the thump, thump of their baby’s heartbeat.
It is one of the most heart-touching sounds for the parents to hear. Although you might feel no difference in your baby’s heartbeat in one after the other checkup, huge changes happen to the heart and circulatory system every week.
When does your baby have a heartbeat?
So, when can you hear a baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope? Unfortunately, you cannot listen to the baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope at an early stage of the pregnancy.
During the 5th week of pregnancy, the baby’s heart tube beats spontaneously, though you still can’t hear it properly.
If you get a first-trimester ultrasound between the 6th to 9th-week of pregnancy, such as those offered by Your Loving Choices: Ultrasound Services, Bloomsburg, the sonographer will get a visual check on your baby’s heart. If you have never had an ultrasound before, don’t panic – the process itself isn’t painful at all and is done over your skin so isn’t invasive at all. The ultrasound will also be able to give you an idea of your estimated delivery date and how many babies you are carrying in the womb.
When can you hear the baby’s heartbeat?
According to the Obstetrician-Gynecologists, you can hear your baby’s heartbeat for the first time in the 10th week of pregnancy using ultrasound. However, the timing can vary a bit.
Still can’t hear it? There is nothing to worry about; the baby might be hiding somewhere in the uterus, or his back is facing out, making it hard for the Doppler to find its target.
You can hear the baby’s heartbeat during your next appointment if you are lucky enough.
Normal fetal heart rate
As mentioned before, the baby’s heart tube is beating continuously after the 5th week of pregnancy. By the 6th week of the pregnancy, the baby’s heart is beating at 110 bpm.
After two more weeks, the fetal heart rate reaches 150-170 beats per minute, faster than an average human being!
By the 9th or 10th week, the baby’s average heartbeat would be about 170 bpm, and by the 20th-week pregnancy, it will decrease to about 140 beats per minute.
During labor, the baby’s normal fetal heartbeat can reach between 110 to 160 beats per minute. In reality, heartbeats can increase or decrease depending on various reasons.
When can you hear the baby’s heartbeat with Doppler?
If you have a Doppler device at home, you can hear the baby’s heartbeat at around the 12-week mark or even early. A Doppler is a handheld ultrasound device that the doctor places on the mother’s tummy to amplify the heartbeat.
However, one thing to note is that the Food and Drug Administration warns against using the at-home Dopplers until and unless performed by a medical professional.
When can you hear the baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope?
So the answer to this question is around 20 weeks of pregnancy. To hear your baby’s heartbeat with a stethoscope, you will need to wait till the 20th-week pregnancy or approximately 8-10 weeks after it is detectable by Doppler.
These are some stages where you can hear the baby’s heartbeat. Although, it takes around 5-6 weeks to develop a heart tube to beat impulsively. So, if you don’t have the facility to get a Doppler test done and only have a stethoscope, you will need to wait till the 20th week of pregnancy to hear the baby’s heartbeat. If you are still facing any problems, you can consult an obstetrician or gynecologist.