Fetus hiccups: causes and significance

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Philippe Gloaguen
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Fetus hiccups: causes and significance

Most children, as it grows in the womb, it has gods gasps that sometimes scare new-born mothers-to-be: what is it? Don't worry, the hiccups fetus it is something normal which indicates good health. Let's see together why. 





In this article

  • How to tell if it is hiccups
  • Why do fetuses have hiccups
  • Causes of hiccups
  • When the hiccups begin
  • When hiccups are dangerous

How to tell if it is hiccups

First, you need to know recognize hiccups from other movements of the fetus. But it is not difficult: if the first times, given the small size of the baby, the jolts are small and can be confused, as it grows in the womb there can be no doubts, it is a question of rhythmic shots, quite the same as those that affect anyone outside the womb! The first time you hear them it might seem strange, but don't worry, you will get used to them. 



Read also: What does a fetus do in the belly? A 4D ultrasound shows it (PHOTO)

Why do fetuses have hiccups

Il hiccups in children still in the mother's womb is therefore a fact entirely physiological: the fetus prepares for life outside the womb! THE gasps they are nothing but the consequence of contractions of the muscles of the rib cage, which testify to the growth and development ofrespiratory system. Inside the uterus, in fact, the baby breathes through the umbilical cord, but as soon as it comes out the air enters the lungs for the first time and for this reason the coordination of respiratory reflexes it must already be mature. 



Causes of hiccups

It is therefore established that it is a reflection entirely positive in the vast majority of cases, the reasons why a fetus has the hiccup they are all to be reconnected to the development of breathing. In fact, the child contracts the diaphragm to train to breathe with the lungs, inhaling amniotic fluid which, upon entering the trachea, is then expelled with hiccups.

If yours baby has hiccups, therefore, it means that it is developing the right way, and that the brain and spinal cord are working well to control the contractions of the diaphragm. 

When the hiccups begin

Usually the hiccup it is perceptible starting from the second quarter, when the fetus it not only reaches larger dimensions but also develops greater capabilities manage reflexes, preparing for the respite real. Typically, just like with movements, the first few times are one small vibration, perceived by many future mothers as a flicker, different from the baby's movements which are more irregular: the hiccup, in fact, has its own rhythm, which can last several minutes. As the fetus grows, the hiccups also become more evident and unambiguous. Some children have it multiple times a day, some once in a while, there is no rule. 

When hiccups are dangerous

In principle, the hiccup, as we have said, is a positive indicator of the development of the fetus, which is preparing for life outside maternal womb. In very rare cases, hiccups that are too prolonged or abnormal with respect to habits, especially in the last weeks of pregnancy, could arouse suspicion: changes or the hiccups do not go away, it may be appropriate to consult a doctor, the only one able to understand if the fetus is in pain. The risk, in fact, is that it is a question of compression of the umbilical cord, a complication that occurs in the last period of pregnancy and which could put the child's life at risk. 

In the last quarter, therefore, if you feel the hiccup every day with several episodes lasting over 15 minutes it is good to contact the gynecologist and evaluate with an ultrasound the state of cord and placenta. 

If, on the other hand, the hiccups remain regular throughout the pregnancy, it does not change intensity and frequency, you can rest assured: everything is fine. If hiccups are bothering you, you can try walking, eating or drinking to try relieve it. But don't hold your breath, on the contrary it could hurt the fetus. 

I fetuses sobbing regularly throughout the pregnancy, but more often than not it is a positive event indicating that the baby is growing up and is developing adequately to be ready for life out of mommy's womb!

SOURCES

Fetal hiccups won't harm your baby – they're totally normal!  

Fetal hiccups; characteristics and relation to fetal heart rate

Urgencies in labor and delivery

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  • hiccups of the newborn
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