I've been lurking on this thread for a coupe of weeks. I'm 8w2d with my first and I'm planning a very low-tech pregnancy with a home birth (no u/s or doppler or testing unless absolutely necessary). A huge part of me knows that this is what's best for the baby, and I am putting my trust in Nature, but there's a tiny part of me that would love to hear the hb. How do I convince this little part of me to listen to the rational "me"? I keep telling myself that it's not about me; it's about what's best for the baby... *sigh*
Anyone else considering a "low tech" pregnancy? - Page 4
According to my MW you should be able to hear the heartbeat at about 10 1/2 weeks. I have one at home and have been trying periodically (OK, I'll admit it, mostly every day - LOL!) but I haven't heard anything yet, and I'm at 9 wks today.
OMG, thank you for that info!!! I am so excited to know that!!! You made my week. :)
I'm planning a low tech pg. I'm not even for sure when I'm due, but I think we'll be doing some guessing on my due date. With my last pg I had two appointments at the drs to have a back up so the doppler was used then. Otherwise my midwife used the fetoscope. I didn't have any ultrasounds and didn't test for strep b. I did my own GD testing with my MIL's tester. Then I did have blood work to check for 2 things, but I can't remember what. My midwife didn't even do any vaginal checks last time.
No I haven't found one.
I am due in <1 week and have not had any interventions save when I went to the Dr. when first PG, peed in a cup and had bloodwork done. My MW also has me do pee strips at every appt. So no ultrasound, doppler, or any other testing besides glucose/protein from pee. Though I was anxious in early pregnancy my faith in my body and my midwife's strong anti-intervention approach (there for a reason after 1000+ births and 30 years as a lay MW), as well as my own research, has made me completely comfortable and confident in my decision. This is a personal decision for all women and I have no right to say what other women "should" do. In fact one of the best things you can do for your birth and your baby is to be as confident and stress free as possible, and if that means tests for you then that's up to you!
Plus all that being said, I strongly believe that some aspects of the medical system are indispensable. For example after my home birth, if my baby is having trouble breathing, I'm not going to sit at home hoping it will go away. Likewise, we found out our blood types in case of incompatibility. And good thing we did too as I am RH- and he is +. I didn't do the standard Rhogam shot at 28 weeks but would have if I had experienced some trauma. We will heel prick the babe and if he/she is RH+ I will go and get the shot to protect future pregnancies.
Anyway this post is a little all over the place but just want to say we may all do things a little differently but think we need to remember that we are all after the same thing - healthy and happy mamas and babies.
We were not able to hear a heartbeat with the fetoscope until around 20 weeks I think, right around the time I first felt kicks! I would have loved to have heard it sooner. Now of course we hear it booming all over my belly :) Something helpful my midwife said when going the low intervention route that I've said on these boards before: as long as your belly is growing, your baby is growing!
Well, ladies, OP here and I've had my first ever early ultrasound. I had my HCG levels checked too due to spotting and mw concern bt thenshe felt they were crazy high, though still normal and was worried about a molar pregnancy or twins. Between that and the spotting and cramping I was freaked and agreed to the u/s. Relieved to find one baby with a heartbeat. I think at this point I may use a doppler till we can use the fetoscope. even that will be odd for this community. My mw's are new graduates and I think *part* of how early you can hear a hb with the fetoscope has to do with their experience level. mine are so dependent on dopplers and barely ever get to use fetoscopes. Even at 28 weeks (with dd) they had trouble hearing it, also think my placenta was in the front too... I still plan to follow this thread. I think even with mw's it's a bit tricky here in BC with the mw's being part of the medical system and paid for by provincial health insurance (although we pay that, how is that free canadian health care??? we pay for our reg doc visits, mw visits and covers part of some dentistry, but ambulances and anything extra not childbith related comes out of pocket or from dh's health plan at work which he also pays for!)
anyway, I plan to follow this as much as possible still.
doulawoman, Glad you're feeling better about things! I think you will probably still be cautious about interventions which is the main focus of low intervention - I would consider an early US too if it seemed like there may be a problem! It is so comforting to see the USs and the heartbeat.
LLtheTinkerbell, Thanks for the info about your experience! I'll try not to feel bad if I still can't hear the heartbeat next week. I'm really looking forward to hearing it (and feeling kicking!) though!
I am having my fifth baby and would really like a uc. I have some awesome midwives on the road system, but that would mean toting all my kiddos with me and staying in a hotel for atleast a week beforehand. We did this the last time around and everyone got pinkeye and the stomach flu and my kids were miserable. I don't have family or friends around to help that don't work or could fly from far away- nor would I want that- lots of stress there. Our town has a hospital that is pretty low key and natural- but to get into an appointment is almost impossible considering my husband's schedule and the rediculous wait time at the hospital- hours you wait for one appointment. The ER is good for actual emergencies. So, I am going the diy way for awhile unless I feel otherwise necessary. I would love to deliver at home with a midwife that I trust- but alas, no such thing out here. I have some other options with friends who are open minded who can help me if I absolutely need it during the time. So, we'll see. I'm not worried about tests during pregnancy (I can take my blood pressure, pee on sticks, fundal measurements, and fetascope heartbeat.) mostly thinking about the birth itself.
Fetoscopes are generally not useful until after 17/18 weeks. I've never heard of anyone being able to hear anything earlier than that with one. Even doppler is usually 12 weeks until you can hear something.
My fetoscope went missing shortly after we moved. I really don't want to buy another, so I guess I'm going hunting as soon as I have the energy.....
Dh was reading over my shoulder and thinks he's seen it in the last couple weeks, so hopefully it's not too far away.
Something helpful my midwife said when going the low intervention route that I've said on these boards before: as long as your belly is growing, your baby is growing!
Thank you so much for saying that! My belly's definitely expanding and what you wrote helped me to breathe a little easier. This "low intervention" route is a lot tougher than I thought (but so worth it for the baby and the mom, I know!). :)
OK, I was wrong... I had a MW appt on Thurs and it turns out she meant the doppler (I thought you could hear a HB on the doppler before that?) She said you can't usually hear the HB on the fetoscope until about 18 weeks, or maybe slightly before that if you have a very lean belly.
Dopplers depend on so many factors from size of the mom (how much belly fat, how deep her pelvis is, shape of pelvis, etc), how high her uterus is, how powerful the probe is, etc. So, usually you can pick up the fhr for the first time somewhere between 8-11 weeks.
Fetoscopes can pick up as early as 18 weeks, but become easier to use the later someone is. I have heard that with a Leff style fetoscope, one can pick up FHT as early as 17 weeks, but I have never used one, so I don't know from experience. I want to get one because they can be used under water.... it is on my wish list :)
Oh, I am soooo excited for you!! My mw said that by 25 weeks it was 99% certain to hear the hb. Although truth be told, I had to try three times to hear it. You have to get really quiet and go beyond the bumps and shuffles you'll hear at first.
Honestly, I was so overwhelmed when I heard the hb that I forgot to ask what the rate was! I'll email my mw to see what she picked up.
BEST OF LUCK!!!