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What is Quickening?

One of the most exciting parts of the second trimester is feeling your baby move. Women, both new and repeat moms-to-be, wait anxiously for the first movements that they feel in their belly, coming from their baby. These first movements are often referred to as quickening.

In actuality, your baby begins wiggling and moving by the 8th or 9th week of pregnancy. However, he is too small for you to feel at this point. However as he gets bigger he starts to kick the walls of your uterus as he moves around. This can happen as early as the 14th week of pregnancy, normally for women in their second pregnancy or beyond, and as late as the 26th week of pregnancy for women who are in their first pregnancy or might be a little overweight.

Quickening is often explained away as gas bubbles, especially by first time moms who aren’t sure what it should feel like. Quickening may also feel like a woman has butterflies in her stomach, flying around, or someone inside, tapping on their uterus. Eventually however the kicks, punches, and elbows will become obvious to even first time moms-to-be, and the movements will start to come with more regularity than they have in the past.

Remember that once you feel the quickening, you will probably be able to feel it everyday, however some days it may not be as often or as strong as others. If you want to get your baby active, it is often suggested that you drink a big glass of orange juice and lay down to wait for your baby to move. When you are up moving around, it often rocks your baby to sleep, so when you stop moving, he is able to wake up and start moving on his own.

If you start to feel what you think is quickening, but has a definite pattern, like a tap every five to ten seconds, it could be that your baby has the hiccups! Hiccups, like the quickening are a sure sign that your baby is growing and is healthy inside your belly.

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57 Comments on "What is Quickening?"

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9 months 5 days ago
Anyone still posting on here? Im having possible quickening but tested pos in dec 26. Tests became fainter and fainter. Hadnt bled since nov20-25 or so, til jan 5 started bleeding. Tests became negative. But few mths in a row terrible weird bloatey periods…. never felt before. Been reading ab cryptic pregnancy and break thru bleedinh, i just have the feeling, instinct and dreams telling me i am. …. id be in complete shock to be an i didnt know i was pregnant, situations… altho its kind of sensible after the pregnancy issues my husband and i have had. Appt… Read more »
1 year 3 months ago

I am currently 8 almost 9 weeks pregnant with my 2nd child i feel lots of “quicking”, but my 2 year old is always stemulating my belly, i sware i feel the baby moving already

1 year 5 months ago

I know am pregnant so I don’t need a pt to tell me that i am pregnant. All i do it take my prenatal pills and eat and sleep.

1 year 5 months ago
Hi, i was told that i have pcos, at age 16,i take matters in my own and i start to loss weight, taking my bc that will help regular me, but never take it how the doctor say i take few of the pill when i was a period, happy i stop talking the pills on my 20th birthday in October, i start to see it coming monthly. I add unprotected sex about 2-3 after my period, but i heard if i have sex ever two day i might get pregnant so i did, i missed my period in March… Read more »
1 year 6 months ago


2 years 5 months ago

By that many months you would have to have a high amount of hcg in your blood it doubles every couple days or something to a certain level. And usually when they test for cysts they do an ultrasound which would tell you for sure if there’s a baby. So I don’t know, the rest sounds right. Could be, could not be though.

2 years 7 months ago
I have the same thing going on cramping in my lower belly and negative blood an urine test but I haven’t had a period since end of October,20 or so and never saw my period had a discharge but I’ve spotted an I’ve had moring sickness head ach tired more then usual gaining weight and sore boobs migraines mood swings peeing alot more than usual food cravings it looks like I have an baby bump and if I am pregnant I’d be 17weeks as of today they tested me for cyts an everything came back good but idnt get tested… Read more »

[…] Quickening (fetal movement) […]

3 years 7 months ago

We rock our babies to sleep when we are up and about? 🙂 that’s adorable. I started feeling the butterfly feeling towards the end of 11 weeks. It feels weird, but pretty awesome at the same time.

4 years 10 months ago

Hey, I felt fluttering for the 1st time about 3days ago and I’m only 15+3 weeks pregnant I think it depends on baby’s development 🙂
Congrats to all thou xx

5 years 2 days ago


5 years 1 month ago

i don’t know if i’m pregnant or not but i think i am, i have been having this light tapping or little flutter in my stomach for the past 2-3 weeks and i know it’s not gas because it doesn’t feel like gas but i also been having gas constipation and bloating like i am pregnant or something, i’m also having cramps too i made an appointment with my doc to see what’s wrong with me i hope it’s nothing serious like a cyst i’d rather be pregnant than to have a cyst

Ericka b
5 years 1 month ago

I dont knw if im pregnant or not but I keep having really bad cramps in my pelvic area and up my right side wht does tht mean

5 years 2 months ago

I am almost 16 wks prego and I dont think my baby has moved yet. This is my first time, so I don’t know what it feels like. Im very scared. Should I go to the doctor?

5 years 2 months ago

If you are more than 12 weeks it may not show up in a preg test. My friend would never get a pos on a hpt, trust your body if you think somethings up then go see a doc for more answers.

5 years 3 months ago

Hi i have PCOS which makes me really irreagular so figuring the best time to get pregnant has been hard. Well for a little over a month now i have had a fluttery feeling in my tummy and then today i felt something like what i would think a baby kick would feel like and it done it a few times.. I have taken tests and even done another today but they show neg. Is it possible i may be pregnant or could it be something else?

5 years 4 months ago

i am 17 wks with my first and i felt movement last week for first time. i dont feel it every day but felt baby again a few days ago walking in a store and felt like tapping inside tummy. it has been a beautiful feeling. i have a lot of pressure at times to put if i position myself in a different way it slows down, maybe its baby wiggling around. good luck to every mom out there for the special feeling for the first time.

5 years 4 months ago
i am about 18-19 weeks pregnant. this is my first pregn. not to be tmi but i got wicked bad gas w pregnancy. sometimes i hear what i believe to be gas in my tummy. sometimes it brings gas sometimes it doesnt. so i dont know if its quickening or not. i dont think i felt any movements yet. except 1 night a few nights back i was laying on the coach to fall asleep on my R side. and my stomach julted about a mile away n back lol. i wonder if that was my 1st time feeln a… Read more »
5 years 6 months ago

I am 15 weeks 3 days pregnant and started feeling like tingerly feeling in my belly around my belly button, this is my second baby and i felt my first around 12 weeks , so the feelings ur feeling are most certainly ur lil one… All the best

5 years 6 months ago

I am 16 weeks and 6 days pregnant and I started feeling the flutters when I was around 16 weeks and have been feeling it siince then and this is my second pregnancy I miscarried my first baby at eleven weeks just wanted to know if it was a bit to early for me to feel the baby move

5 years 7 months ago

i am 28 years old. and i have not had a period since november 2010. that would make me about 16 weeks pregnant if i am . i have taken several test and they all say negative but this past two weeks i have felt weird thumps and rumble in my belly off and on throughout the day especially laying down or just sitting still. just now i heard a thump like when you thump a melon or something. its so weird. i wonder if i am pregnant.

5 years 7 months ago

Ok so I need help. My last period was at Christmas but I have taken 3 tests since then that all came up negative. I was pregnant once before but I was in high school and miscarried. I have been having all of the symptoms: morning sickness, gas, tender ta-ta’s, and this weird butterfly feeling that is nonstop. Can someone tell me if it is likely that I am pregnant and the tests just aren’t picking up my HGC levels or what it is that I am feeling with the butterflies?

5 years 8 months ago

I guess I need a vocab lesson lol can someone please define “flutter”?? I’m about 16 weeks and I just felt a poking sensation that I thought was a gas bubble. It felt like a muscle twitch on the surface but when I pressed it, it felt more like a poking sensation. Two moms I know have already said they think its the baby moving. But I’m not convinced :/

5 years 8 months ago

Hi i’m pregnant with my 2nd child and im almost 8 weeks and i already feel the quickening its like when ur hungry and ur tummy rumbles but without the sound. I remember the feeling with my first but i already feel it now just jumping around in there.. is it normal?

5 years 8 months ago

[…] all started a month or so ago with what’s known as ‘the quickening’ – another term I’m not too fond of as it kinds of sounds like something old fashioned and a […]

5 years 8 months ago

if you can’t feel the baby or do not know what it feels like, buy an at home doppler. you’ll hear a loud kick when the baby moves and maybe it’ll teach you what it feels like. that is what i’ve done!

good luck all <3

5 years 9 months ago

I am 20 weeks pregnant and by the 19 i started feeling the baby move. At first I thought it was gas. But as it came out to be that it really was the baby move. I love the feeling that this little baby gives to me. Its a joyful thing since this is the only baby I will get to have in my life due to having a really bad back.

5 years 9 months ago

i’m 21 weeks pregnant and i’ve started noticing some bubble movements in from 18th week but that time i was not confident about the movements but now i m confident and really enjoying it…………………….

5 years 11 months ago

ive taken urin pregnancy test and a blood pregnancy test both came back neg. i havnet had a ful period since july every month since then has been a one day only when i whip spotting. im pretty sure im pregnant i feel little nervous feelings in my belly and i first felt it 4days ago. so just wondering if anyone thinks its just my imagination or if im probably correct..thanks and congrats to the mommys to be..MUAH

5 years 11 months ago

im 16wks preggo wit my 3rd set of twins(they run in my family and my husband family my husband a triplet and im a twin) and yesterday I just started to feel the flutters after I drank a big glass of orange juice and it feels amazing except when I laid down to go to sleep they wouldnt stop tapping lol so my husband rubbed my stomach and they calmed down finally

5 years 11 months ago

i felt flutters at 9wks. im 12 weeks now,and the flutters/thumping are much stronger esp when i lay on my left. its an amazing feeling.

5 years 11 months ago

Im 16 weeks prego and I feel the tapping all the time at diffrent times of the day I love its such a wonderfull fealing iv ben fealing this for about 5 weeks now I love it

5 years 11 months ago

im 7 months and ifeel the baby move when im laying on my back like litt;le punches and then sometimes ifeel quickening down near my pelvis soo awsommee

6 years 6 days ago

I’m 16 weeks and I cannot distinguish if it is gas or the baby but i haven’t felt it for a couple of days so I’m assuming it was just gas, I wish I could feel him/her already so I know that he/she is okay.

6 years 3 months ago
So I’m really scared because back in october I had went to my 10 week ultrasound where I found out my baby had been dead for a month but my body didn’t know it so my uterus kept growing (I had a 6 week fetus but a 10 week uterus). So now I am 14 weeks pregnant and my stupid ultrasound got pushed back and now it is only a week away (I’m in the navy and navy doctors aren’t the greatest). I keep thinking that I am feeling movement but my husband keeps insisting it’s gas because he doesn’t… Read more »
6 years 4 months ago

I am 17 weeks pregnant now with my fisrt pregnancy but started felling like I ve bubbles in my tommy at 16 weeks. Initially I thought it was gas but it has become consistent since then especially when I’m lying down. Its really an exciting thing to observe each day. Good luck with ur pregnancy.

6 years 4 months ago
am 18 wks pregnant and as early as my 14th week, i started feeling like my tummy has bubbles. until now i noticed that soimetimes when im relaxed or while am lying down, i would feel as if something was tapping the walls of my tummy. i wasnt really sure at first if it was just my stomach but when i felt as if it happens everyday, i knew it was my baby.. it doesnt happen often since i wasnt too observant but i noticed thatt eh day doesn pass w/o me feeling little taps on my tummy. its really… Read more »
6 years 4 months ago

I am pregnant with my first baby, 17 weeks along. I’ve been worried about the health of my baby because I’m not showing much (my doctor says everything is fine). I started feeling my baby move last week and it has been really consistant ever since. I could’ve sworn I felt my baby moving weeks before that but figured it was impossible. Feeling the baby move is reassurance that everything is fine. I don’t think it’s ever too early to feel movement.

6 years 5 months ago

i am 17.5 weeks pregnant. i have not felt any fluttering or gas or anything, but this morning in bed it felt like i had a big lump in my stomach that moved when i moved onto my side/ and back again when i went onto my back…it was this the baby or something else! have not seen this kind of thing described anywhere!

6 years 5 months ago

I am 18 weeks prego with Twins <3 I have been able to feel them move since 11weeks!! They always get the hicups…most amazing feeling <3

6 years 5 months ago

I am 15 weeks and i felt kind of a bubbly feeling a few days ago while I was at work. It would only happen when I was walking, as soon as I stopped to see if I could feel it better, it would stop, too. Not quite sure it was the baby, it’s happened a few more times since then. But it was definitely a feeling I have not ever had before. Good luck lil momma’s. 🙂

[…] What is Quickening? […]

Mrs Linch
6 years 9 months ago

My daughter is 13 weeks and experienced her first quickening. Is it possible for Mum to be to faint at this time because I remember fainting whilst I was carrying her at the quickening?

6 years 9 months ago
I am 16 wks & 2 days. I am not sure if I have been feeling flutters/quickening. I miscarried my 1st baby at 6 weeks in March of 2009 and now pregnant with my 2nd. And assuming at 6 weeks when I miscarried, I would think my muscles or stomache didnt really strecth out. At about 13 weeks, I started to feel hardening on one side of my lower abdomen assuming thats where the baby has been hanging out. But then at 14. 5 weeks, I was laying down and felt my stomache just sink in, and felt a movement… Read more »
6 years 10 months ago

hia all u mums 2 be 🙂 i am 17 weeks nd i 1st felt my baby movin when i was 15 weeks but since tht 1st time i felt it , i feel it everyday some days its really strong were as other days its faint ……. good luck every 1 xxxxxx

7 years 1 month ago

I got a posetive test at 3 weeks pregnant…

I just felt my baby move last night! I’m 15 weeks! It was exciting

7 years 1 month ago

i did a home preg test & had a very faint pos line that could easily have bin mistaken as a ‘watermark’ a digital test the same day confirmed preg as 1/2 wks since conception making me only just preg! (3 wks since last period) so i cant help but wonder why its said that we can only see a pos result at around 5/6 wks?????

7 years 1 month ago
Im not sure if im pregnant but my last period was in june and the one is july was for 3 days with no cramping i took a home pregnancy test last month but it was neg and my doc did a blood test and my results were a 5 and she told me that between 5-25 its still to early to tell so this coming friday i have a ultra sound done and i have also been feeling something move and i dont know what it is i get it 3-4 times a day but i do have the… Read more »
7 years 1 month ago

im 12wks 5days and second time pregnant – first preg felt flutters at 14 wks – this time ive felt flutters and taps since week 11 – im very well tuned with my body so extremely confident these are movements from baby & not gas!
best wishes to all. x

Tiffany mommy2b
7 years 2 months ago

hi every 1 i’m just about 14 weeks and this is my 1st pregnancy 🙂 . i began feeling a gasy feeling at about 12 or 13 weeks. i thought it was gas, and it kinda feels like the uncomforatable feeling you get during ur period. at first i thought i was imaging things. after research, i learned it was “quickening” i’m so super excited…. congrats to all moms 2 b

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