Baby Heart Doppler/Fetal Sonacaid

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Hi All

I am a powerseller but also a Midwife and feel compelled to write about baby heart monitors or what we prefer to call Sonacaids. For those who don't know, these are used by Midwives to monitor a baby's heart beat during antenatal checks and during labour.

I have been looking for a new monitor on ebay recently for my own practice and have been absolutely shocked at how many people are mis-quoting these products and that they are being sold to mums-to-be.

A lot of the adverts are saying that they can be used to hear a baby's heart beat from 8-10 weeks and I have to say that this is absolutely wrong!! The womb carrying the baby stays inside the pelvis until you reach 12-13 weeks pregnant, when it will slowly start to rise out of the pelvis and into the abdominal region. Bearing this in mind, a heart beat cannot be heard until the womb moves out of the pelvis as the doppler cannot hear sounds through bone. This is a fact! If mums say that they have heard a heartbeat, it is very likly to be their own as there are lots of arteries running around that area and us midwives often pick this up instead of the baby and only a trained ear knows the difference.

It is nothing short of irresponsible to be selling these items to women. Although a lot of research has been done into fetal dopplers, we still don't know what the effects are of excessive use. Midwives will only use these items on check ups and through labour, but anxious women may be tempted to use these daily. 

For women who use these items later on in pregnancy, they may actually have a problem, but if they use a doppler, hear a heart beat and presume it is the baby's then they may miss a problem.

I am very concerned about these items being sold to women. If you are a mum and are considering buying one of these, please think carefully. If you do, then listen to baby occasionally and not before 13 weeks. A baby's heart beat will sound a lot faster than your own and a true beat will be short and sharp, not wooshy.

I urge you to wait until you see your midwife to hear the baby. You may be anxious for several reasons and I do understand your anxiety but, listening too early will not help.

Sorry to ramble, but please take the advice from someone who cares. Thanks x  

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