I've been feeling little Zoey kick, twist, turn and thump around in my belly since about 16.5 weeks into my pregnancy, but the last 6 weeks I've been feeling her hiccup almost everyday for a period of 10-30 minutes. It is such a cute yet strange feeling! From what I've researched this is a very normal thing for babies to do in utero, and is even considered to be a sign of healthy development. Zoey hiccups....too cute! : )
Is It Ok For My Unborn Baby To Have Hiccups So Often?
Your growing and developing baby can create all sorts of strange feelings when she is inside your womb. She will kick, she will turn, and she will wiggle. Sometimes, it will even feel like she’s re-enacting a scene from Saturday Night Fever or Footloose! From the moment that a mom-to-be feels those first movements (sometimes known as “quickening”) that will occur at around 18 to 24 weeks of pregnancy, each new feeling can be a special moment of excitement and expectation. Your baby might even hiccup while she is still in your belly!
Hiccups for an unborn baby are completely normal. When your baby hiccups, it will feel like a small spasm in your belly. Hiccups will generally feel distinct from other sorts of movements. Some babies will not hiccup at all while still in the womb, while others may hiccup several times a day every day.
Hiccups in your unborn baby are just a fetal reflex that is remarkably similar to our own. Only the more mature fetuses will hiccup, as hiccups rely on the development of the central nervous system. Some experts think that hiccups in utero is a response to fetal drinking or fetal breathing, which causes the flow of amniotic fluid in and out of the lungs, stimulating the diaphragm to contract.
Hiccups in unborn babies do not seem to cause the same discomfort as it does in adults. Some research even suggests that hiccups are actually soothing to your baby, and help to relieve a variety of pressures on his growing lungs and organs. Your unborn baby may even start hiccupping as early as the last part of your first trimester, although you probably won’t be able to notice them until much later. If your baby has a hiccup while you are at a prenatal exam, you might be able to hear the hiccups with a Doppler heart tone machine. It is also fairly common for newborns to get cases of the hiccups, so don't be surprised when your little one who has been hiccupping in the womb continues to do it after he gets out!