Baby Kicking – Everything You Need to Know

baby kicking in the womb

An experience most women find gratifying is the first time they sense their baby kick. They can also ask very specific questions like “Is my baby kicking enough?” “Does kicking happen too frequent?” and “how does the baby kick?” These are some of the questions pregnant women tend to ask themselves in their second trimester. This article will help you understand what to expect from fetal movement, and when you need to speak to a healthcare professional.

When Should I First Feel My Baby Kicking? 

Your baby develops at a rapid rate right from the first day of pregnancy until the end of the 12th week. In the first trimester, your baby will develop into a fetus that looks like a tiny baby with vocal cords. However, you should not expect any fetal movements despite the rapid development.

Despite these advances, you should not expect your child to start kicking yet, as he or she is still very small and covered by the protective covering of the uterus. However, you might experience exhaustion, nausea, and breast pain, which makes it obvious that your baby is alive and kicking.

The 2nd Trimester – Baby Starts to Kick

The 2nd trimester is when you start to sense the movements in your womb that indicate your child’s muscles are flexing. Most women welcome their baby kicking for the first time in the eighteenth and twentieth weeks. Some women report feeling the quickening as early as the fourteenth week of pregnancy. This is usually due to the placenta’s position in the womb. Suppose the placenta faces the front of your body. It is known as the anterior placenta.

What Will My Baby Kicking Feel Like?

It is hard to explain what the baby’s first kick feels like. Some women think of something similar to butterflies with a fluttering sensation inside their stomachs. Some women describe the sensation as twitching or nudging inside their abdomen. It may have bubbles bursting inside your stomach. Whatever your baby early kicks, feel like they are bound to leave you delighted and happy.

Also, know that all babies are unique, and their behavior and movement in the womb are different; hence you should not compare your baby’s kick with your older children or that of your friends. You should not worry if your baby is very active. It does not necessarily mean that he will become hyperactive when he grows up.

What Is Time Of The Day Best To Feel Your Baby Kicking?

During the daytime, your movement is likely to make your baby sleep. During the day, you are usually busy taking care of everything in your life, like your job and taking care of the home. You are likely to feel your baby kick at night when you are more relaxed and more attuned with your own body and more aware of what your baby is doing. This is the reason many women find it difficult to sleep because their baby is kicking continuously. 

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When you feed, your baby usually gets an energy boost due to the blood sugar spike, and they become active and start kicking repeatedly. If you begin to feel nervous, the adrenaline rush will give your baby a boost too, and they will suddenly start to kick more than they usually do, so you should not panic if you notice this.

A Month By Month Guide To Feeling Your Baby Kicking

As we stated earlier, you won’t feel your baby kick or move before the fourth month of pregnancy. After the first four months, you will start to feel those first twitches of your baby’s movement, which will soon turn into full-time kicks and somersaults. Here is a month-by-month guide of what you will likely experience.

4th Month

 Some women might start to feel their baby moving at this time, especially those who are very slim or who have been pregnant before. Most of the time, pregnant women don’t notice the flits and cramps at this time of the pregnancy. They don’t feel it because it feels more like muscle spasms or gas in their abdomen than baby kicks.

5th Month

By this time, most women would have felt their baby move for the first time. Once you think about the first baby movement, you will know what you should expect and will start to experience those kicks more regularly with every week that passes by. Their lift and training become more potent since their little muscles will become more robust, and they begin to develop more motor skills.

At this point, your baby can turn a somersault in the uterus. If you haven’t felt any movement by 22 weeks, you might be given an ultra-scan to check the due date because many women can get it wrong. So you don’t have to panic when you notice that your baby is yet to start kicking.

6th & 7th Month

In the 6th month, you will observe that your baby’s leg movement will become choreographed. You will begin to notice patterns emerge in their movement. In the third trimester, at the 7th month of the pregnancy, your baby will have less space to move but will still be small enough to turn upside down and get stronger, giving you strong kicks and punches.

8th Month

Your baby is increasing, and your uterus is getting cramped due to a lack of space. You will notice fewer somersaults, but turning and wiggling will likely continue. You will probably observe strong jabs from your baby’s knees and elbows jutting out of your stomach. If the movement becomes too irritating for you, try to change your position. The best thing about this period is that you can communicate with your little one by pushing their leg back inside.

9th Month

Your baby has gotten to his full weight and size and is cramped up in your womb. You won’t notice any kicking anymore, but you will see the more prominent movements. You will also notice a lot of kicking in your cervix, and your baby’s feet have been lodged in your rib-cage. If you change position, do some pelvic tilts or give your baby a nudge, and you will get some relief.

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Should I Count How Often My Baby Is Kicking?

Once you get to the 28th-week pregnancy, your doctor will likely ask you to start taking a count of kicks and movement until your delivery.  Take a record of how frequently your baby kicks. Try to set some quiet time aside when you can count the activity. You should trust in the morning when movement is usually less frequent and another at night when signs when your baby is more active. Ten actions within an hour are considered to be expected.

If you don’t notice ten movements in an hour, take some fruit juice, lie down, and count. If it takes two hours to get to ten moves, talk to your doctor. At the same time, a lack of activity doesn’t mean that they are a problem.  Not that as your delivery date draws closer, it becomes more important to check for fetal movements. On the ninth, you should make sure to count activity each day and if you notice a sudden drop in the number of moves, talk to your doctor.

My Baby Is Kicking Less. Why Is That?

As you go through your pregnancy, it is important to stay aware of your baby’s kicks, punches, and rolls. However, note that changes might occur in your fetal movements, and this is not unusual. Some of them include:

During Your Second Trimester

It is possible to go for days when you feel your baby’s kicks. You will probably not feel regular kicks which is okay because your baby is still growing. You might not notice some movement because of your baby’s position. If your baby is facing inwards, you would likely not feel anything.

During Your Third Trimester

By this time, your baby would have developed a consistent sleeping and waking cycle, and space between kicks might signify that your baby is sleeping. If you notice that the number of movements reduces greatly in the last month, you should see the doctor to confirm everything is alright.

After Sex, During Sex

The rocking movement, followed by the uterus’ contraction after climax, will lull babies back to sleep. Some babies become more active after sex. Both types are normal, so there’s no need to be bothered about sex unless your health care professional tells you.


If you are bothered that your baby is not moving enough, you can try lying on your side, try having a cold drink, play some music, or try talking to your baby. If you have been pregnant before and have experienced a baby’s kicks, then you might feel some phantom kicking when not pregnant, which usually happens to previously pregnant women. There are several reasons why you may experience this feeling.

To feel your baby kicking for the first time is a thing of joy for most pregnant women. It shows that your baby is active and healthy. However, if you notice that your baby is not active, you might want to meet with your doctor to confirm if everything is okay with you and your baby. It is also important that you eat right, take good amounts of water and juice, and exercise to stay fit.

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