At 28 weeks of pregnancy, when you start your 3rd trimester, it’s time to start counting your baby’s kicks. Kick count referred to counting your baby’s movement which will include kicks, jabs, turns,rolls, twists and swishes.
Monitoring your baby’s movement is important so that you can get to learn your baby’s movement patterns and detect if there is something unusual so that you can alert your doctor if needed. Doctors may be able to identify potential problems with your pregnancy as soon as possible, so that further evaluation and treatment before your baby’s heart rate is affected.
In some cases, this may help save your baby’s life.
How to Count the Kicks
Be sure to discuss ‘kick counting’ and your patterns with your doctor, midwife or provider.
- Count the Kicks daily
- Pick a regular time of the day that you can count the kicks. Ideally this would be when your baby is usually most active (this might be after a meal or in the evening).
- Make sure your baby is awake. Drinking some cold liquid, walking, pushing on your tummy or having a cold drink are good wake-up calls.
- Sit with your feet up or lie on your side. This will help you better feel your baby’s movement.
- You may want to rest your hands on your abdomen. Depending on the location of your placenta, this might help you to feel or detect the movements better.
- Count the kicks occurring within a 2 hour time period.
- Count each of your baby’s movements as one kick, and count until you reach 10 kicks.
- Log or record your kicks. You can write them down, use a kick chart, or download and use the Count the Kicks App available from Count the Kicks Organisation.
Points to Remember
Count the Kicks Organisation says that there are two primary things to remember when ‘counting kicks’:
- Babies don’t run out of room to move. As they grow, they will run out of room for tumbles and somersaults, but they should be moving all the way up to and during labor.
- Notice a change in your baby’s movement pattern? Contact your doctor, midwife or delivery room right away. Do not wait – even if you have an appointment scheduled for the next day.