There are different types of ultrasound for pregnant women. The standard ultrasound is the most common. In this procedure, a two-dimensional (2D) image of the baby inside the womb is being shown, along with the identification of its gender and tentative due date. However, most women nowadays wanted to see what their babies look like while still inside their wombs. This need is addressed by the emergence of three-dimensional (3D) and four-dimensional (4D) ultrasound.
3D and 4D ultrasounds are not required by most physicians since the standard 2D ultrasound can also provide the information that 3D and 4D ultrasounds could give. Unlike 2D scans, the images produced in the 3D and 4D ultrasounds are clearer. With this advent in ultrasound imaging, an expectant parent can see her baby suck his thumb or smile or wince. Undoubtedly, this feature makes 3D and 4D ultrasounds more in demand than the standard one.
3D and 4D ultrasounds use the same equipment as the standard 2D ultrasound. A warm gel is applied to the abdomen to help the transducer secure the sound waves and record them back. However, the difference between 2D, 3D and 4D ultrasound is the imaging machine used in capturing the scans. For 3D ultrasound, the scans show a three-dimensional image of the baby. 4D ultrasound, however, having the fourth dimension as time, produces a three-dimensional video of the baby inside the womb.
What is best time for 3D 4D ultrasound? According to doctors, the best time is to conduct a 3D scan and 4D ultrasound video at 30 weeks of pregnancy. At this time, the babys features have already developed and a clearer view of the babys overall image is available. Unlike 2D scans, 3D and 4D ultrasounds show the skin of the baby instead of his internal organs. The babys position inside the womb is a contributing factor as to how much of the babys features can be seen. If the baby is lying facing outwards, then you can clearly see his face. But if he is facing your back, then you will not be able to see much. The amniotic fluid surrounding baby and the mothers tummy fat are factors too, whether or not the babys features can be viewed clearly.
3D and 4D ultrasounds are not advised to be done often. Even though they are as safe as the regular 2D scans, most experts do not recommend having 3D or 4d ultrasound video at 30 weeks of pregnancy exclusively for souvenir photos or recordings because you are exposing the infant to more ultrasound than what is medically necessary. Moreover, these should be performed by an expert or a trained professional.