Can babies cry while in the womb?

From about the fourteenth week of pregnancyexpectant mothers begin to feel their baby kicking in the belly. Also, the fetus sometimes turns over and even hiccups - this happens when the baby accidentally swallows the surrounding liquid. Mothers experience the baby's hiccups as rhythmic contractions in the abdomen. Based on all this, the question arises - can children in the womb cry? You can quench your thirst for knowledge by watching videos made on an ultrasound machine. In 2015, scientists looked inside the womb to trace the baby's movements and did notice something that looked like crying. The movements began after stimulating the fetus with vibration, that is, the doctors deliberately scared the child into crying. But is it really crying, or something else?

While in the womb, babies emit "gestalt cries"

Crying children in the womb

According to the scientific publication Science Alert, video fromcrying baby in the womb was published in Archives of Disease in Childhood - Fetal and Neonatal Edition back in 2005. After stimulating with vibration, the scientists applied an ultrasound machine to the pregnant woman's abdomen and noticed that the baby opened his mouth wide. As he did so, he threw his head back and let out three deep breaths. In addition to this, doctors noticed chin tremors - a clear sign of crying. This response to stimulation was seen in 10 fetuses, which is 6% of the total number of infants studied.

Positioning the front chest wall and chin while crying

What are Gestalt Shouts?

In 2011, Nadia Reissland and her colleagues studiedfacial expressions that occur in children with intrauterine "crying" and talked about their observations in the scientific journal PLOS One. They called the facial expressions of crying children "gestalt cries." They believe that the observed phenomenon may be a precursor to facial expressions that appear in infants immediately after birth. They can develop at 24-35 weeks of gestation, and the longer the period, the more difficult the grimaces.

The facial expressions of children crying in the womb are called "gestalt screams"

While kicks and hiccups make themselves feltto know, for pregnant women, the crying of a baby in the stomach is not felt in any way. To put it simply, by grimacing in the womb, the baby exercises crying after birth. Whether "gestalt screams" are associated with pain or other discomfort in babies, scientists do not know at the moment. It is important to note that this phenomenon occurs not only when the abdomen is stimulated - in the course of a 2011 study, silent screams occurred even in a calm position.

See also: What are children crying about? A new translator will help you understand

Why do babies cry at birth?

The cries of a child at birth are associated with the fact that heyou need to breathe on your own for the first time. Before birth, the baby receives everything it needs from the mother's body - nutrition occurs through the placenta and umbilical cord. After birth, he takes his first breath, which leads to a contraction of the chest and filling of the lungs with air. Due to the fact that the muscles of the chest are contracting all at once, there is a terrible pain, which is the cause of the cry. Fortunately, during the cry, pain relievers are produced that act almost instantly.

Crying is the only way babies communicate with the world around them.

After birth and up to one year of age, childrencry because this is the only way to communicate discomfort to others. Sometimes they just lie uncomfortably or want to eat, but in some cases screams signal pain - in this case, it will not work to calm the child down with simple motion sickness and you need to see a doctor. As we age, crying can also signal discomfort, but in some cases, children simply begin to manipulate adults.

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There are many articles on our site thatdedicated to children. For example, I recently talked about why children don't like vegetables - scientists have an explanation for this and a way to make greens more attractive to children. I also recommend reading an article by my colleague Lyubov Sokovikova about why children perceive voice assistants as living beings. Here's a link.

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