Baby kicking low? Here’s what might be going on

You waited for weeks for this major pregnancy milestone. Usually, the second trimester brings about the awe and wonder of feeling your baby’s first faint, fluttering movements. Then, as you go into the final three months, you might feel random yet formidable pressure. Nonetheless, all throughout your pregnancy, you might wonder, “Why is my baby kicking so low?” You can relax because there are a number of reasons to explain your baby’s change in movement.

Pregnant woman facing the sun
Gulcin Guler/Pixabay

Why is my baby kicking so low during the second trimester?

So far, there’s a lot of room for kicking and even somersaults. At this stage, your baby has discovered that he or she comes equipped with these movable appendages that we know as arms and legs. Thus, the movement is almost similar to play or exploration exhibited by newborns and very young babies when they move their limbs about freely to see what happens. In this case, the level and location of the “kicking” varies, and at times, it feels like it’s located lower in your abdominal region. Nonetheless, there is nothing to worry about as this movement means that your baby is only “frolicking” and “exploring,” so to speak, which facilitates gross motor and neurological development.

Location matters

Furthermore, in the early stages of pregnancy, your baby’s fluttery movements feel somewhat faint. At the same time, the kicks can be felt lower in the abdominal area close to your belly button or right below it. Because the upper uterine wall is still growing, your baby might wiggle around in the lower pelvic area and eventually make his or her way up.

Keep in mind that your baby still has a lot of wiggle room, and the location of the kicking is likely to change within days if not hours.

Do baby kicks hurt?

Additionally, if you wonder, “Do baby kicks hurt?” then you might be surprised that the answer is usually “no.” In general, a baby’s kicking or punching don’t cause sharp pain, but at the same time you’ll definitely know the difference between pregnancy-related flatulence and your baby’s movement. For example, right about the sixth month, a baby’s kicks take on an almost “punchy” type of movement, and at that point, if he or she has hiccups, then you can feel the rhythmic tremors. Nonetheless, the only time you’ll feel your baby kicking low (or in a lower spot than usual) is if he or she is performing some rather elaborate acrobatics because there is still a lot of space in the amniotic sac.

Likewise, if you experience pressure, more like a “thud” in your lower abdomen, your baby’s head, rather than feet, is likely pressing against your belly or your back.

Pregnant woman in third trimester feeling baby kicking
Anastasiia Chepinska/Unsplash

Third trimester movement

Another factor to consider, going into the third trimester, is that the baby found a comfortable spot to occupy for the time being. Plus, your little one might still have his or her head facing upward. However, you don’t have to be alarmed because most of the time, the baby will likely turn over as the due date approaches.

One other odd sensation that some moms experience is kicking that appears to take place in the upper vaginal area. However, the baby’s feet (or arms) are not reaching down that far but rather, right on top of the cervix.

When to check with your doctor

If your baby is in a breach position, this experience will occur more often than if your baby was in a vertex (head down) position. However, this might not be a cause for alarm since your obstetrician might be able to “flip” the baby over before the due date. This is called an external cephalic version or ECV where the doctor uses gentle but firm pressure to turn the baby over.

So when you wonder, “Why is my baby kicking so low?” you can rest assured that there no major issues affecting your pregnancy, and for the most part, the location of your baby’s movement relates more to his or her position. The size of your baby and the stage of your pregnancy are also contributing factors, but of course, if you ever have any questions or concerns, you should always contact your practitioner. In the meantime, simply enjoy feeling your little one turning flips and remind yourself of the joyful delivery day that will soon arrive.

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