A baby’s gestational age is typically calculated by counting from the first day of the woman’s last menstrual period and adding 7 days. However, this can be inaccurate as it does not take into account various factors such as ovulation cycles, embryonic development rates, and fertilization methods. Ultrasounds are used to measure fetal size so that a more accurate due date can be estimated. If your baby is measuring big you may wonder if they will come early or not. This blog post discusses some things to know about babies that measure big and whether or not they will come early!
What is Large for Gestational Age (LGA)?
For a fetus to be considered LGA, it must meet at least one of the following criteria:
- Fetal weight is greater than the 90th percentile for gestational age.
- Biparietal diameter (the width of the head) is greater than the 90th percentile.
- Head circumference is greater than the 90th percentile.
- Fetal length is greater than the 97th percentile.
If you have the above, your baby is measuring bigger than the average or measuring ahead of their fetal age. When a baby is measuring large it can be a sign that baby’s growth is just because its a large baby and is perfectly healthy. It can also be an indication of pre gestational diabetes in pregnant women and it will need to be monitored.
Which Babies Are At Risk for LGA?
There are some risk factors that can make a baby more likely to be classified as LGA. These include:
- Maternal diabetes (gestational diabetes or pre-existing)
- Having multiples (twins, triplets, etc.)
- Being obese prior to getting pregnant
How is LGA Treated?
Treatment varies according to symptoms, age, and medical condition of the mother. When ultrasounds are performed while pregnant with babies it is recommended to start early pregnancy. You may need planned cesareans. Upon birth, babies with a high gestational age are examined thoroughly. Your newborn might undergo blood glucose tests within a few hours to see if it is low blood sugar or not.
How Can LGA Be Prevented?
LGA can be prevented by following the recommendations below:
- Get more exercise (find out what kind of exercises are safe during pregnancy). If you are carrying twins follow our twin pregnancy exercise guide.
- Eat healthy, balanced meals (follow these guidelines to create a healthy eating plan for you and your baby in the first trimester).
- If overweight before getting pregnant, lose some weight. Weight gain in the mother can lead to excessive birth weight increases in babies.
Is your baby measuring big?
Every prenatal appointment will include an examination by the doctor, whom will measure your fundal height. The fundal height is defined as the distance between the pubic bone and the top of the uterus. This measurement reveals the size of the baby in relation to gestational age.
It is possible that the baby will be too large for the gestational age at some point. If this is the case, the doctor will do an ultrasound scan as well as other tests to establish the root of the problem.
Tell me the signs of having a big baby?
The measurement of baby size can be done only after the birth of the infant. During the routine prenatal check-up, he’ll measure the foot-length distance from the breastbone into the uterus. Depending on distances, the doctors may think the child is larger. Similarly, excessive vascular blood may indicate that baby is bigger than normal. If the baby’s weight increases then urine levels can rise as much as 30%. This increases amnoitic fluids. If an infant is suspected, a weighed down baby can have MRI scans done. The scanner will only be useful for the estimation of the approximate weights.
Should I be worried if my baby measures big?
Doctors will usually keep track of the baby’s size starting at around 36 weeks gestation. This is because most babies will reach their birth weight by this point. If your baby is measuring big, your doctor will likely want to do additional tests to figure out why. Some babies are just larger than average and don’t have any health problems, but other babies will have other health concerns.
If your baby has a condition that requires additional monitoring, you’ll likely be asked to go back to the doctor’s office for further testing and might need an ultrasound scan of your uterus or even fetal heart rate (FHR) tests. If a high-risk pregnancy is suspected because of small gestational age at the beginning of the pregnancy, it is likely that more tests will be performed.
In general, your doctor won’t have any reason to worry about a growing baby unless he or she notices other physical signs and symptoms in you during an exam or at your prenatal appointments. You should not need additional testing if you’ve had a normal physical examination during your pregnancy, you’re eating a healthy diet, and you’re getting regular exercise.
How can I reduce the risk of having a big baby?
If you’re concerned about having a big baby, there are some things that you can do to help make your pregnancy healthier and reduce the risk of giving birth to a larger than average infant.
Stay active during your entire pregnancy: Exercising regularly is one of the best ways to improve your overall health and lower your chance of developing any complications.
-Keep a diary that can help track foods and drinks digested during each day of pregnancy, including snacks between meals as well at regular mealtimes. This is because irregularities in diet during gestation may cause fetal overgrowth or underweight babies.
What are the complications of giving birth to a large baby?
The complications of giving birth to a big baby may include:
-Early delivery. Babies who are too large can lead to early labor and delivery, which is also known as preterm delivery or premature birth. Premature babies are not fully prepared for life outside the womb and face health problems right away in newborn intensive care units (NICUs).
-Difficult delivery. A big baby can be difficult to deliver vaginally, which may require a cesarean section (C-section).
-Injury to the baby. Babies who are too large are more likely to get stuck in the birth canal or experience other injuries during delivery. Vaginal tissues in the uterine muscles can tear during a vaginal delivery.
-Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) . This is a condition that can occur in newborns when their blood sugar levels drop dangerously low soon after they’re born.
Vaginal birth is a very painful event. The syndrome is caused by shoulder dystocia where the shoulder is caught in the pelvis and/or birth injuries occur. A woman may be asked for forceps or vaccination. Sometimes, it is necessary to perform emergency C-sections. Sometimes vascular tissue can be torn by the pressure. In uterine pregnancy, the baby might develop muscle contractions. It can result in bleeding.
Several factors can increase the chances that your child will develop macular degeneration or fetal macrosomal disease. Examples: Diabetes in mothers. Mammary somia can be more severe after pregnancy (pregestational diabetes), pregnancy when you have diabetes. If your diabetes is not properly managed, your child could gain more shoulders and more belly fat. Macrosomia can cause fetal malnutrition and weight problems in women with a history of diabetes or obesity.
If Your Baby Is Measuring Big Will It Come Early??
No, the due date is not changed if your baby measures ahead. However, there are things you can do to decrease the hazard of pregnancy diabetes and large-for-gestational age (LGA) newborns. These comprise: exercise, diet control programmings as well as close prenatal care follow-up. A healthy way of life will help keep you on top of your game, as well as maintain a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. So be diligent, stay informed and aim for the best!
- Keep up with your checkups
- Measure blood glucose levels if you have diabetes or are overweight
- Stay active and eat healthy foods to reduce the risk of macrosomia
- If you have diabetes or are overweight, be sure to monitor blood sugar and fetal movement regularly
- Know the signs of labor and when to go to the hospital
The bottom line is that if your baby is measuring big, there’s no need to worry. However, by taking some preventative measures and doing what you can to stay healthy, your baby’s health will be protected and he or she will have the best possible start in life even if they are a larger baby!