Pregnancy

Bellabeat: listen to the fetal heartbeat with an app

Is it possible to listen to the baby’s heartbeat through a simple app installed on the phone? According to the authors of Bellabeat yes, but be careful not to take the result at face value.

In recent years, devices that allow you to listen to your baby’s heartbeat starting from about 16-18 weeks of pregnancy have become very popular among expectant mothers . These are fetal dopplers that allow mothers and fathers to hear the baby’s heartbeat through headphones.

With the improvement of available technologies, we have seen the birth of increasingly sophisticated devices, such as the one that initially offered Bellabeat, a particular sensor that connected to the phone to monitor the baby’s heartbeat.

Well, a few years after its launch, this system no longer exists, because it has been replaced by just the phone with a special app installed.

Looking at the various devices on the market today, we can say that all these systems that monitored the heartbeat are gradually disappearing from the market. And maybe that’s a good thing because they can create unnecessary anxiety or give unreliable results. 

How to listen to the fetal heart with an app?

You download the app from the Apple and Android stores and install it on your phone for free.

The app uses the microphone of the mobile phone to detect the heartbeat of the baby in the tummy and, through sophisticated algorithms, offers a sophisticated audio experience,

It allows you to record your heartbeat and share it with your dad, relatives and friends.

How to use the app

When you are about to listen to the baby’s heartbeat, put your smartphone in flight mode, to avoid any communication while the phone is near or in contact with the belly.

Use the phone without the case to get better performance from the app.

Place yourself in a quiet, noiseless room and place the phone microphone-side down on your belly to start listening to the heartbeat: try to find the best place where you hear it best (usually in the lower abdomen).

The app is absolutely not a medical device and its reliability is not guaranteed.  

The authors of the app recommend using it no earlier than 30 weeks of pregnancy and obviously be careful not to confuse your heartbeat with that of the baby.

Kathryn Barlow is an OB/GYN doctor, which is the medical specialty that deals with the care of women's reproductive health, including pregnancy and childbirth.

Obstetricians provide care to women during pregnancy, labor, and delivery, while gynecologists focus on the health of the female reproductive system, including the ovaries, uterus, vagina, and breasts. OB/GYN doctors are trained to provide medical and surgical care for a wide range of conditions related to women's reproductive health.

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