For every woman who is about to be a mother, pregnancy is the best time of her life and she cannot wait to start experiencing motherhood with her baby in her arms. Every time a mother feels her baby in her womb, she’s desperate to know what her baby must be doing or what his/her movements might mean, as these are the among the first precious moments between her and her baby. “Does my baby like the song I’m singing?” could be a common doubt among mums who sing. Also, when your baby kicks, it’s actually relieving because you know they are healthy and developing well both physically and mentally.
Here are a few things that might help you understand what really goes on inside your womb and whether your baby is actually reacting to the things you do from inside the womb.
1. Your baby becomes male
This is not necessarily a thing your baby does as much as it happens to him (yes specifically him). Only in the 5th or 6th week since conception does the fetus begin to be affected by the Y-chromosome, if at all. The SRY gene on the Y chromosome affects sex organ formation.
2. Your baby moves
12 weeks in, your baby has started to make movements on its own. The fetus is nearly two inches long, with fully formed arms and legs and little fingers and toes. You can’t feel this yet.
3. Your baby blinks!
Your baby blinks in the womb, although he/she can’t see anything yet because it is dark in the womb.
4. Your baby smiles
Your baby hears your voice, becomes accustomed to it, and smiles when he/she recognises it. Yup, it’s true! Your baby isn’t even born yet, and already likes you. So go ahead and sing a few sweet songs for your little one, as now you know they will be listening.
5. Your baby yawns
Although the baby is in the amniotic sac, floating in amniotic fluids, occasionally, your baby will “yawn” in the womb. Yawning is a response to the insufficiency of oxygen supply to the brain, and although the baby’s supply comes from you, this is practice for the real world.
6. Your baby stretches
As muscles develop, your baby tests them, stretching within the confines of the uterus. By 5 months, your baby is 6 inches long. You can see and feel your uterus now. Your bump is significant and you can feel your baby move.
7. Your baby sucks his/her thumb
The fetus is formed in the amniotic fluid and as such cannot swallow anything. However, your baby begins to suck their thumb to practice the sucking action for when you will breastfeed them.
8. Makes faces
It is vital for your baby to be able to communicate discomfort upon birth, so your baby practices grimacing in the womb. It is unknown whether a grimacing fetus is actually feeling any pain, but perhaps, as with a suckling fetus, no actual stimuli (hunger/pain) exists yet.
9. Dives changes position
A month before final term, your baby’s inner ear is fully formed and they can sense whether they are upside down. As you get closer to completing your term, your baby begins to slowly position itself to exit your womb headfirst.