How To Use AngelPulse™ Fetal Doppler (Frequently Asked Questions)
Q: When can I start using AngelPulse™ Fetal Doppler at home?
A: In some woman the fetal heart can be detected as early as 8-12 weeks. The fetal heartbeat should certainly be audible in nearly all women at 12-16 weeks into your pregnancy. Earlier in pregnancy, between 8-12 weeks, your success in finding the heart rate can have to do with the quality of your device. Fetal dopplers that employ a 2 mhz probe tend to pick up the fetal heart rate earlier than 3mhz fetal dopplers as they have a more defined beam which penetrates deeper (3-5cm compared to 1-2cm). An important note is to remember that everyone is different, so not finding your baby's heartbeat early isn't a reason for concern. If you have concerns about your pregnancy you should contact your healthcare provider. Like the numbers above reflect nearly 100% of woman are able to hear the fetal heartbeat from the 14th week.
Q: How do I know I'm hearing my baby's heartbeat and not mine?
A: The easiest and most conclusive way to decipher your heartbeat from your baby's is by the heart rate or BPM (beats per minute). Your baby's heart rate will be between 120 to 180 BPM. This is considered the normal range of a fetal heart rate. Conversely, your heart rate will be much less 60-100 BPM. Early in pregnancy its normal for the fetal heart rate to vary within a reasonable range. As your pregnancy progresses and your baby grows the heart rate will become more static. Also be aware that like adults your baby's heart rate will vary depending on activity level. If you have further questions or concerns about your baby's heart rate contact your health care provider.
Q: I am 12 weeks pregnant, I got an AngelPulse™ fetal doppler yesterday and tried it out for the first time today. My babies BPM's were 140, is this normal? I had an ultra sound done at 9 weeks and it measured 165 beats per minute. I am curious if such a wide range of heart beats per minute (BPM) is normal?
A: Yes, it is perfectly normal. Your baby's heart rate will be between 120 & 180 BPM, this is considered the normal range of a fetal heart rate. The reasons for such a wide range have to do with many factors including if the baby is asleep or awake, if they babies system is digesting food, and a host of other activities. Early in pregnancy its normal for the fetal heart rate to vary within a reasonable range. As your pregnancy progresses and your baby grows the heart rate will become more regular within a lower range.
Q: I am 9 weeks 2 days pregnant and i purchased AngelPulse™ fetal doppler, I used the doppler today and i could hear a heartbeat and it was saying it was 120bpm then when i moved it, it went up to 135bpm, then to 152bpm. But the main one i was measuring was around the 120bpm. I know a 9 week old heart beat should be faster than this, so could it maybe be the doppler. The company said you can pick a heartbeat up from 8 weeks but 10-12 weeks is recommended, so could the doppler be inaccurate because I am not far enough in the pregnancy?
A: Any movement of the probe can cause static as it moves which the Fetal Doppler can interpret as heart rate as well. Also if you have the probe in just the right spot sometimes you may pick up both the fetal heart rate and your own combined and that will give you a higher than normal reading. I'm assuming your doppler has a digital display that shows you the heart rate rather then you counting? The best thing for you to do is give your baby time to grow. You should practice with your baby heart monitor regularly also. Having a fetal doppler at home can be a great comfort but with inexperience can come some misinterpretation, causing un-needed worry. Just try to relax and enjoy the new mother experience.
Q: Do I need to use gel with my AngelPulse™ Fetal Doppler?
A: Some people do find that gel helps them to hear the fetal heart beats early in the pregnancy. Most customers tell us that our AngelPulse™ work fine without gel or just as well with gel as with shower gel / body wash. We recommend first trying without and gel. If you seem to have any problem hearing the heart beat perfectly clearly, then try using some body wash gel. If you still feel you are not hearing the hearbeat as clearly as you heard in the doctors office, then feel free to order some or our Ultrasonic Gel, though we think you will find it is not necessary.
Q: Can the fetal heart rate predict that baby gender?
A: Sorry, no. Your baby's fetal heart rate has nothing to do with the sex of your baby, though many people have a great time playing with this myth. We recommend you ask your doctor of a visual ultrasound or better yet, stick to the old fashioned way of finding out the sex - at birth!