Why get a scan?
Many Mums and Dads-to-be are electing to have a 3D/4D/5D scan during the pregnancy to be able to see their little one, up close and in incredible detail. These first images of baby help parents to relieve any stress they might be feeling especially when they haven’t seen baby since the 20 weeks scan. They also give them a chance to see baby in live action, doing whatever it is doing in the womb and to be able to share that moment with family, friends and loved ones
Check before booking a scan
The technology in this area has improved dramatically in the last year or so. Images are now so clear and detailed they take your breath away. These scans are not cheap and the level of expectation is so high, so, how can you ensure that you have the best chance to get the best images of your baby when you go for this type of scan?
Make sure that whichever studio you choose has invested in the latest technology available. There is a huge difference in quality and clarity of images amongst the machines. So ask the following:
What colour are the images from your machine?
If they say yellow they are using very old technology (3D/4D machines)
If they say pink you are on the right track.
Ask what images are provided at the end of the scan and how are they delivered to you?
If the answer is still images on CD-ROM, USB Stick and moving images on DVD the machine is more than 5 years old.
If the answer is movie clips and still images transferred directly by WIFI to your phone (the latest machines have built in WIFI) you are on the right track.
How to choose an imaging centre
Go to an imaging centre that specialises in parental scanning. Don’t rely on the medical centre you went to for your 12 weeks or 20 weeks scan or your obstetrician. The skills involved in getting great pictures of baby is very different from medical scanning.
Go to a centre who’s reputation depends solely on the quality of the images they produce. These centres care about making sure each and every couple are happy with their results. The really good centres make sure that there are no other bookings either side of you so you don’t feel under pressure and that you have the whole centre to yourselves. Each family should feel that they day their saw their baby properly, for the first time should be a very special event.
When to get your scan?
Have your 5D live scan between 24-28 weeks. This is absolutely the best time to see baby. The baby’s frame is covered in fat so it looks like your baby and not like a little skeleton.
At this age the baby is small enough to move easily if it is not in a great position to be seen. The older the baby gets, the bigger it gets and the more space it takes up in tummy. This makes them harder and harder to scan and you increase the risk of poorer quality images.
Will I see my baby's face?
It helps if the baby is awake. With 3D/4D and 5D live scanning, a moving baby makes the images more interesting and varied and also makes the baby easier to move it is not lying in a great spot. Sleeping babies that are warm and comfortable and up against the placenta are very hard to wake up. So, have something very cold to drink about 30 minutes before your scan. The best is a very cold Coke with lots of ice, if you have diabetes (gestational or otherwise) iced cold water instead.
Ask the centre of your choice their policy if they are not able to get images of the baby’s face. The reputable places will include a free rescan should things not go to plan. After all, it is not your fault if the baby doesn’t cooperate.
ABOUT OUR CONTRIBUTOR:
David Portnoy Managing Director of Early Image Pty Ltd has been providing 3D/4D/5D Ultrasound services in Australia for the past 15 years. With a team of dedicated personnel and using only of the very latest technology, Early Image has introduced over 70,000 parents-to-be to their unborn babies in a luxurious and memorable experience.