As soon as the pee on the test kit dries up, gender guessing games start. Look at any of the gender prediction tips available online for your unborn baby, and you will immediately see fetal heart rate as one of the most widely used tool! It is intriguing because unlike the shape of the tummy or the aftermath of eating garlic, fetal heart rate does sound more authentic and scientific. But, is it? Read on to understand everything about the connection between fetal heart rate and your baby’s gender.
Fetal ultrasound image

  • What Is Fetal Heart Rate?
  • What Is The Myth Between Fetal Heart Rate And Gender?
  • Can Fetal Heart Rate Predict The Baby’s Gender?

What Is Fetal Heart Rate?

Fetal heart rate (FHR) is exactly as the name suggests – it is the heart rate of your baby (fetus) when in utero (that is, while inside your womb). It is measured during each of your visit to radiologist for pregnancy scans. While generally FHR ranges from 120 beats per minute (bpm) to 160 bpm, this range varies depending on the gestation period. Usually FHR continues to decrease during the pregnancy, meaning during your first visit to the radiologist at around 8 to 10 weeks, the FHR could be as high as 170 bps and by your last scan at 8 or 9 months, the FHR could be as low as 120 bps.

What Is The Myth Between Fetal Heart Rate And Gender?

The popular belief is based on the fact that 140 bps is the average fetal heart rate for the baby in utero (as the range is between 120 to 160 bps)

  • If you are having a girl, then chances are the fetal heart rate is consistently above 140 bps during your pregnancy scans
  • If you are having a boy, then chances are the fetal heart rate is consistently below 140 bps during your pregnancy scans

Can Fetal Heart Rate Predict The Baby’s Gender?

Unfortunately, there is only ONE way you can predict the gender of the baby – and that is through the ultrasound scan. Predictions based on fetal heart rate are basically a numbers game. Some parents say it worked for them. Some parents say it does not work. This effectively means that whatever the fetal heart rate is, there is a 50-50 chance for having a boy or a girl, which, well, you already knew from the beginning.
There is no evidence as to how such a pregnancy myth came about. But it is definitely very popular among to-be parents. What is definitely true is – and this is backed by actual medical studies –a lower than 140 bps FHR does not guarantee a baby boy and a higher than 140 bps FHR does not guarantee a baby boy. So do not go ahead and paint the nursery pink or blue after your ultrasound scan based on the fetal heart rate. The myth is just a statistical play – hearts rates are usually above and below the average anyway. Moreover, it can also vary widely from one ultrasound scan to another – making a prediction all the more complicated! Infact, the belief that baby girls have faster heart beats has been only proven during the process of delivery, for reasons unknown.

That said, there is a certain euphoria and reassurance every mother feel when she hears that whoosh whoosh sound of the baby heart beat during the ultrasound scan. Let a higher or lower heart rate, predicting a girl or a boy, not take the beauty of that euphoric moment from you. The visit to the hospital should ideally answer your “real” doubts and questions – about your health, about your activity levels, about your diet and so on. This is because the health of the baby is more important than the gender of the baby. Or, in other more candid words, the gender of your child becomes immaterial if he or she is born with some medical conditions or problems, however small.
We at beingtheparent.com want to reiterate that the only sure shot way to predict your baby’s gender is through an ultrasound scan, which, for very good reasons, is illegal in India (and many other countries). However, we also understand it is fun to guess the gender and place bets on it within the family. So we have put together 10 Signs You Are Pregnant With A Girl and 10 Signs You Are Pregnant With A Boy!
Again, consider these only as fun exercises. Predicting a baby’s gender has 50% chance of coming true, so its good to bet on horses, but not on baby names! Do not take it too seriously that you let the prediction gets your hopes up or hopes squashed! To wait until your baby’s birth is the sure-shot way of knowing your baby’s gender.
Happy pregnancy!