Many people, especially mom’s, wonder what an unborn baby feels throughout a pregnancy. They wonder if they are even able to feel anything at all. Unborn babies are actually able to feel once they reach a certain age in gestation. A lot of moms are unaware of the fact that their baby can also taste what they have been chowing down on. They can also feel emotions, and their mom's emotions very well. Whatever emotions their mom is feeling and experiencing, make their way to the little one. If mom is happy, the baby is happy. If she is stressed, her baby is also stressed.
So what does this mean during the labor and delivery process? While there is no way to be 100 percent certain what the baby actually feels since it’s not like they come out talking, we do know they are capable to feel and that their senses have developed. We can’t help but to wonder what the baby feels as mom’s body is pushing him or her down towards the birth canal and out of it. If you are one of those people who has ever wondered what the unborn baby feels from labor to birth, continue reading.
14 There's Less Fluid To Swim In After The Water Breaks
If mom’s water breaks signaling the start of labor, which not everyone’s water actually breaks, the baby will begin to notice the decrease in the amniotic fluids. For some women, not many, it is like a gush of fluids where the levels drop drastically. For other women, it is more like a slow leak. The baby will most likely be able to feel that it’s decreasing. The only way to compare it would be like sitting in a tub when the water’s draining. The baby would also feel the difference between moving its skin within fluids to having no type of resistance. Fluids may not have much resistance, but it’s like moving your leg in a pool compared to outside. You can definitely feel the difference. It will be another new sensation for moms little one.
13 The Baby Feels Mom's Stress As Labor Approaches
Unborn babies are able to feel what their mother is feeling thanks to her hormones. If mom is stressed, anxious, happy, sad, or angry the baby will be able to feel all those things and they will begin to feel something close to what mom is experiencing. When labor starts for most moms, they typically feel anxious and stressed so her body will release a hormone called cortisol. While the baby is getting that same hormone, it is a bit diluted so it is not as strong of a sensation. This is why pregnant women are often urged to try to avoid excess stress. The unborn baby will feel what mom is feeling all the way up until they are delivered. Since hopefully, mom has not felt anything quite this stressful during her pregnancy, the amount of cortisol the baby is feeling will most likely be it’s first.
12 There's Less Room To Move Once Contractions Start
When a mom's contractions begin, that is her uterine muscles contracting. They tighten and release. They might seem like the biggest nuisance in the world, but they are there for a reason. That is what helps move the baby down into position for delivery. This is something that moms baby notices as well. His/her housing walls are literally moving, and moving the baby without their permission. The baby’s space goes from normal, to closing in on them. Let’s hope that claustrophobia does not start inside the womb, although if it did, this is probably where it originated from. Moms baby is not going to know what is going on. Let’s not forget that the baby is still being flooding with that stress hormone, cortisol. Things just continue to get chaotic for the baby from here.
11 The Epidural Can Make The Baby Feel Sleepy
This only really applies to moms who have had an epidural or another form of pain medication. We already know that whatever a mom takes, the baby will be taking as well. The same applies to an epidural and pain medications. A side effect of these two is feeling tired, groggy, or maybe even sedated for an adult. The baby may be feeling even more sleepy than their mother felt since their bodies are much tinier. It takes less of a medication to make a baby feel sedated because of their size, and their mother had received a full adult dose. So if the baby seems kind of sluggish and not as enthusiastic about meeting you as you would expect, give it time. The side effects of the medications will wear off though, and the baby will be curiously looking around in no time.
10 There's A Pulling Sensation
Now that mom’s contractions are really going nuts, the baby is getting a suction kind of pull. This is something that is slightly difficult to find the right words for. The contractions have pulled the little guy/girl down further. He/she is feeling the pulling sensation like the are being guided without any physical presence. The baby’s surroundings are moving them into the right position and they do not know what is going on. To an adult, the most comparable thing may be getting thrown down a waterslide. Kind of like, how you have no control or what you are doing, or where you are going- it just happens. So you hang on for the ride of your life. No obviously, it may be like that without the speeding since the baby is slowly getting inches to where they need to be.
9 The Body Gets Squished From Top To Bottom
After the contractions have started to move the little guy/girl into place and they have reached the opening of the birth canal, they are most likely going to feel a lot of pressure. It probably feels like their entire body is being squeezed from top to bottom. As adults, we know that when we are squeezed there is a lot of pressure. Almost like being trapped inside of a massive bear hug from your best friends or significant other. The kind where they just wrap their arms around you and it feels like they are trying to make your head pop off. Babies will feel a lot of pressure as their body is being pushed and contorted into positions that only acrobats know how to achieve. The face, head, every part of them is being squished while they are trying to make their entrance. It doesn’t stop until they make their full exit.
8 The Baby Becomes More Distressed
During the process of labor and delivery, a baby is in great distress. They have all these emotions, physical sensations, and feelings going on and they don’t know what to do about any of it. Unborn babies have no knowledge of why they are being put through all of this. They only know that it is happening. As humans, when we don’t know why we are being put through something traumatic or stressful, we feel a sense of anxiety, panic, and uneasiness. There is no real way to prove that a baby feels all of those things, but if they are able to have feelings and emotions, and they don’t know what’s going on, why wouldn’t they feel like that? They are still human beings. Babies can even start crying while they are inside the womb. There is proof and documentation of this that was caught on several ultrasounds. The only difference is that when babies cry inside the womb, there is no sound.
7 Gets Crammed Through The Birth Canal
The major controversial debate is whether or not unborn babies feel pain during the delivery process. There have actually been numerous doctors who agree that babies actually do feel pain during this ordeal. When babies are being pushed out, their body is being pulled and contorted. Their heads and face are squished to fit out. Their shoulders have to be crunched as well as numerous other parts of them. If babies can feel emotions, that means they would also be able to feel pain. If a doctor has to use a forceps to help get them out, they feel that as well. Now, this is all during a natural delivery because when babies are born via cesarean section, they are still going through parts of the labor, however, they are not being contorted to exit something tiny. It’s not a universal agreement yet, but it is very plausible that they feel some sort of pain.
6 There's Feelings Of Confusion
A while back in this process the baby has begun to feel confused, most likely from the very first contraction all the way past the trauma of being born. Babies and human never stop feeling confused. When there is something going on that we just cannot seem to understand or grasp we will feel confused. The babies may sense confusion early on inside the womb when they are trying to figure out their fingers and their toes. However, they most likely have not had the overwhelming amounts of confusion as when labor starts and everything they have known up until this point beings to change. Unfortunately, we are unable to ask a baby what confused them the most or what was the worst part during the whole process of them being born, so we can only assume what the baby is actually feeling.
5 The Vernix Feels Sticky After Leaving The Womb
While an unborn baby is being pushed out, they are traveling through so many different types of fluids. Of course, a baby will not know what sticky means, but they will be able to feel the stickiness all over their skin and body. The baby has just been submerged in fluids for the past nine months, so their skin is most likely super sensitive to different sensations. When the baby is born it also has a white colored substance on it when it comes out called vernix, which protects the baby’s skin while it is inside the womb. It will continue to protect the baby’s skin from everything that it has to travel through during the birthing process. After the baby is born, he or she will get cleaned off.
4 Will Feel Cold For The First Time
After the baby comes out, one thing it will feel it is a change of temperature and air on his/her skin for the first time. While the baby is in the womb, mom’s temperature stays regulated around the same 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit. When it comes out, it is hitting about 70 degrees which is a very drastic change. It will also feel air flowing across its skin for the first time. The temperature change and the moving air are two completely new sensations for the little one. He/she may feel cold for the first time ever. The changes may feel like coming outside into the fresh air after being cooped up in your house for a long time. The baby will also be able to fully stretch out for the first time as well.
3 The Lungs Prepare For The First Breath
A new experience for a baby will be their first breath of air. This is one of the things that happens very shortly after they are born. If your baby does not have its first breath immediately, do not panic. They most likely will very shortly. During pregnancy, the placenta is how the baby gets its oxygen. Their lungs are filled with fluid until they get ready to take their first breath. Their lungs take in oxygen from the fluid when they are born. The fluid in the lungs is removed by the blood and the lymph system and is replaced with air. Sometimes the doctors may suction some of the amniotic fluids from the baby’s nose and mouth that is in there to help aid them on their way. It really is amazing how from having the umbilical cord cut, that their body will begin to work and function all on its own.
2 Surprised And Overwhelmed
It is only natural for the baby to feel a sense of surprise and to feel overwhelmed with everything that has just happened. We already know they will feel confused and distressed. It would be amazing if we knew for sure everything that a baby feels throughout this entire process. I highly doubt we'll ever get to truly find out unless baby defies everything that we know and comes out of the birth canal talking. The whole ordeal is very overwhelming. It is said that being born is the most traumatic thing that we will ever go through and that is completely understandable as to why. It is just a good thing that we are unable to remember it. I think none of us would be able to look our own mothers straight in the face again if we could remember that.
1 Sensory Overload
When the baby is born he/she is seeing and feeling so many things for the very first time. They get to truly see lights, colors, and shapes. A newborn’s vision is fuzzy and they have no idea what they are truly looking at, but they do not have a sense of how far something is from their face. The only thing that may be relatable would be being in a dark room with no lights and then having someone suddenly open the door allowing you to see again. Everything may look extremely bright to the baby after birth. They are also not able to focus their vision on any one specific thing. The baby's sense of smell may be on overload as well since there was only a limited amount of things they were able to smell inside of the womb. They get to hear things clearer without the sound going through the amniotic fluid and the barrier of being trapped inside of something.
Sources: AboutKidsHealth.com, Parents.com, BabyCenter.com