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We have made is super simple to know how to prepare for the best possible ultrasound sound and what to expect at different stages throughout your pregnancy. Most of this information is available on the web but no- here we have gathered it all together and put in one secret location - not available to just anyone but you, our facebook friends!
Secrets of Scheduling:
We are a "Mom and Pop Style" owned business. Which means you will get great customer service, a welcoming environment, and instantly become an extended member of our family! We are not staffed like a regular business - we are staffed by appointments.
This means we are not able to accommodate walk in appointments.
It also means, we are not always available to answer the phone.
We do have an answering service that is able to take a message and book an appointment, but they simple go the this web page and click the same schedule now button that you can do on your own.
Our messages are only retrievable to us once we arrive back in the office.
If you would like a faster response time please email and a staff member can respond from their cell phone,
(even if they are at another jobsite, shhhh)
**YOU MUST HAVE HAD YOU FIRST MEDICAL ULTRASOUND & ESTABLISHED CARE WITH AN OB PRIOR TO ALL STORK BELLY APPOINTMENTS.**
Most of the time we are able to capture beautiful, amazing photos, but not always.
YES- I said it- some times it is not possible to get great or even good photos.
Every baby photographs/scans differently & end results can vary. But regardless, you will get a get bonding opportunity and learn more about your baby. Some parents learn how stubborn of a sleeper their baby is, because their baby literally rolls away from our ultrasound probe...lol. We do have a few tricks up our sleeves to help overcome these situations.
Sometimes factors that we cannot control can affect the clarity of the images and will prevent the sonographer from obtaining perfect pictures.
Factors such as:
Amniotic Fluid, Fetal Position, Excessive Body can affect the image quality.
Amniotic Fluid levels, specifically the amount of Amniotic fluid around the effects outcome of your session. Murky Amniotic Fluid also poses visibility issues as with any murky fluid. Review our Tips Section for tips on how to try to avoid this situation.
The Position of the Baby also effects outcome of your session, specifically the baby’s face. If your baby is looking downward, has his face all cozied up to the placenta for a nap, or if the baby’s head is tucked right up under mom’s pelvic bone, it can be more difficult to see and image his or her face.
Hands or Feet in front of your baby's face can obstruct the view of your baby's face but often still produce a cute picture of your baby sucking his/her toes or thumb.
The Umbilical Cord can also be directly in front of your baby's face creating an obstacle for a smooth image.
Excessive Fat, Tissue or Skin also effects outcome of your session. If maternal obesity is involved the penetration level of the sound beam can be greatly hindered.
Anterior Placentas, when the placenta is located anteriorly within the uterus, the penetration level of the sound beam can be greatly hindered.
We promise to make every effort obtain the most magnificent photos possible of your baby and capture best possible images of whatever parts of the body that can be seen.
Preparation Tips to Get the Best Images
Do I need a full Bladder?
Yes -if you are having a gender sonogram it is best to have a full bladder. If you are in your 1st or early 2nd trimester, or if you have a little extra tummy tissue having a full bladder can make a positive difference in the outcome of your scan.
No, after early 2nd trimester having a FULL bladder does not help much with 3D ultrasounds. But it is best to have something in your bladder; this lifts the baby out of the pelvis. If the baby is positioned facing the back or if your baby is in a particular awkward location, emptying your bladder can sometimes get the baby to turn. More important than a full bladder is amniotic fluid levels for great 3D/4D – so stay well hydrated.
DRINK LOTS OF WATER FOR 7-10 DAYS PRIOR TO ULTRASOUND!
Being well hydrated is a HUGE factor in amniotic fluid volume and clarity, especially two weeks prior to your scan. You should drink the amount of water per day that is recommended by your physician. Medical providers usually recommend that pregnant women drink 8-10 glasses of plain water a day during their pregnancy. This can increase the amniotic fluid levels around the baby to allow for better imaging of the baby’s face and features. Being well hydrated also increases the transparency of the amniotic fluid to become nice and clear which greatly affects the clarity of the pictures and videos. The more hydrated you are, the better the chance for clearer images.
Also, in addition to the proper WATER intake, only drinking clear fluids and avoiding colorful fluids has also be rumored to be beneficial.
It doesn't do much good to only drink water the night before or the morning of your 3D ultrasound, the fluid prep can take days to weeks if you were not already drinking the proper amounts of water.
Wake that baby up ....just at the exact time of your appointment!
If you are worried that your baby will be asleep at the time of your ultrasound appointment and you want to make your baby move, there are a few tips for you to try. You may want to drink a glass of fruit juice, orange juice or soda on the way to your appointment or try consuming a snack, chocolate or fruit that is naturally high in sugar content, these can often wake your baby and get them moving (unless you are told not to by your physician).If you are here and your baby is still asleep or in a difficult imaging position, we can try different body positions and have you walk around to help the baby wiggle out of its comfy spot.
Wear comfortable clothing that allows you to easily expose your tummy for the scan (top and bottoms, not a dress). You want to be as comfortable and relaxed as possible. Don’t invite anyone to your session that you are uncomfortable seeing your tummy. You want to be as comfortable and relaxed as possible.
Free tip for friends and family:
As a mom of adult children and as a sonographer who has been in the room to witness plenty of uncomfortable moments I want to share a few secretes only sonographers know…
While watching your precious little one on the screen, be highly sensitive to the mommy and do not video her being scanned or the images on the screen. Many mommies are highly self-conscious of her baby belly, or stretch marks and do not appreciate videos of her exposed belly. We offer CD and DVD packages of the scan, for a keepsake of this wonderful experience.
Remember the focus of your session is your baby, so if everyone focus on baby then mom can relax and enjoy her session as well.
If the baby is being difficult and for example turns his head way the image age try to NOT say … OH look… he is going to difficult to deal with just like “insert parents name”....I hear grandparents say these comments all the time – and I know that they don’t mean any harm at all, they often are being cute…but the pregnancy hormones or something often makes my patients very agitated, their blood pressure increases, they breathe heavier and roll their eyes! Lol
****If maternal and fraternal grandparents, or divorced grandparents in the same room is uncomfortable for anyone … and let’s be honest … sometimes it is, it can spoil the entire memory. We can put together a special package and allow 2 different viewings…. Just call us!
If baby seems to have a big nose and dad is self-conscious about his nose size, avoid comments like OMG! Look at that HUGE nose!!!
And lastly, ultrasound cannot detect race, and cannot tell you the race of the father…. Yes we have been asked that.
Our Goal is to provide comfortable and relaxing environment for everyone to enjoy and connect with the little one.
WHAT TO EXPECT AT DIFFERENT GESTATIONAL AGES AND WHY PEOPLE GET MORE THAT ONE 3D ULTRASOUND. (WHAT THEY KNOW THAT YOU DONT KNOW... UNTIL NOW)
Heatbeat: 10 – 14 weeks:
Lots of amazing changes are occurring during this time. Your little peanut/gummy bear really looks like a little human now! Experience the miracle of your baby’s very own beating heart and watch in amazement as your baby moves, plays, and jumps! Prior to 10 weeks the baby is just too small.
Gender: 15 -20 weeks
Some say 14+, 15+, 16+, 18 weeks, and some even say after twenty weeks.
There are several factors that could make gender determination easier/difficult. Factors such as:
Fetal Position- at this age baby’s love to crisscross their feet right between their legs
Cord Position- your baby’s favorite toy is his/her umbilical cord and the best play position always seem to include that cord traveling right between baby’s legs
Excessive Fat, Tissue or Skin -If the placenta is located anteriorly or if maternal obesity is involved the penetration level of the sound beam can be greatly hindered.
Few cases have been reported that on some occasions the sac on a boy will not drop as early as others
Few cases have been reported that if the maternal hormones levels are elevated- the female baby’s gender parts may be slightly swollen making gender difficult to determine (usually resolves itself once delivered and not receiving ”moms” hormones any longer)
Full Body in One Image: 15- 20 weeks:
Many parents enjoy this stage with when they can see the baby as a whole, the whole body in one image. As baby keeps growing this stage is one of the last times your baby may be able to stretch his/her entire body out from head to toe. As the growth continues beyond 20 weeks you can see the face and different parts of the body in separate pictures but not all together anymore. Please note at 20 weeks your baby only weighs 10-12 ounces, so the 3D/4D face images will be of a skinny baby face. As your baby grows and gains more weight, the 3D/4D pictures become better.
3D/4D Sneak Peak: 20-24 (Growing Stage):
These scans are a lot of fun because the baby developing habits and play and is just so darn adorable. At this stage gender is easily identifiable if you have not had it revealed yet. This is not necessarily the time to splurge on a 3D/4D session but a 2D session with a 3D/4D sneak would be perfect at this stage. Prior to 24 weeks the fat has not yet defined the baby although 3D ultrasounds images are obtainable, truly beautiful ultrasound images require fat deposits and fetal development.
3D/4D Viewing: 24 -34 weeks:
Generally we can capture impressive images any time after 23 weeks. The weeks between 24 -34 weeks usually offer good 3D, and the best pictures are between 27 and 32 weeks. Prior to 24 weeks the fat has not yet defined the baby although 3D ultrasounds images are obtainable, truly beautiful ultrasound images require fat deposits and fetal development.
*Note: If you are heavy or full-figured, we recommend scheduling your ultrasound between 32 and 34 weeks of pregnancy for optimum clarity.
Close Up Baby Face: 25 -34 weeks with 27-28 weeks being the Best:
Between 25 -34 weeks usually offer good face images of your baby, with between 27-28 weeks usually being the best time for a close-up shot of the face. As your baby grows, gains more weight, and develops more fat the face becomes more defined resulting in the 3D/4D pictures getting better and better. The incredible face pictures seen in magazines and TV are usually taken after 26 weeks.
3D/4D BEST OVERALL VIEWING: 27-32 weeks:
Enjoy viewing your baby’s face, feet, fingers, heart beating and so much more. During these weeks you may see the most activity from your baby such as yawning, moving hands and feet and you may even see your precious baby looking right back at you.
Unpredictable Viewing: 34-37weeks:
After 34 weeks baby is sometimes just too crowed to get a clear view as baby become squished. It can become difficult to achieve good 3D/4D images due to the limited movement from the baby and the face up against the womb. The baby may have already descended into the pelvis, making getting any clear view of the baby almost impossible. If you are past 34 weeks it is more difficult, but not impossible. You may still be able to receive an occasional good 2D image, just be aware that it is unlikely to receive successful 3D/4D images as earlier in your pregnancy.
Mothers that are pregnant with twins should come in at 14 weeks to try and get the babies together in the same frame or before 27 weeks for optimal individual photos.