The Belly Bump
One of the first questions new moms-to-be ask is “when will I see a belly bump”. Even our Baby in Sight clients frequently ask us questions about their tummy size and often wonder if their belly is comparable to others that are the same number of weeks pregnant? Although most pregnant women start showing around the third or fourth month, the appearance of the “belly bump” is different for everyone and continues to be throughout the pregnancy.
Finding the Ideal Belly Bump Range
Throughout your pregnancy there is a calculation you can do to roughly determine how large your tummy should be based on weeks of pregnancy but ultimately it is your obstetrician/midwife that can truly tell you if tummy size is within the healthy range. The rough calculation involves taking the number of weeks you have been pregnant and subtracting and adding two from this number representing the lower and higher range in centimetres your belly should be. However, don’t be concerned if you don’t fall into this range as it’s simply an estimate.
If your belly bump is seemingly larger in size it could be due to several different factors including that you were carrying a few additional pounds prior to becoming pregnant. It could also be a result of fluid retention which is commonly seen in pregnancy. Sometimes there can be an above average volume of amniotic fluid around the baby which can definitely lead to an increased tummy girth. If you’ve had prior pregnancies, your abdominal muscles may be loose which can result in a belly bump appearing sooner than anticipated. There is also the possibility that your baby is measuring larger than expected based on your weeks of pregnancy which can contribute to a bigger belly.
Conversely, there are reasons why your tummy may look smaller than others who are the same number of weeks pregnant. Often taller expectant moms tend to carry higher so there is less of a bump. Toned women can also exhibit a more petite tummy as can expectant moms carrying a baby that is “small for dates.”
The bottom line is your doctor/midwife will inform you if your belly size isn’t within the typical range and if any concerns exist a medical obstetrical ultrasound will be requisitioned to determine fetal size.