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What Does Carrying Baby Low Actually Mean?

What Does Carrying Baby Low Actually Mean?
Do not believe in the myth that carrying baby low means you are carrying a boy! The following article explains what does carrying low in pregnancy mean. Read on to know what precautions a pregnant woman should take if the position of the baby is near the pelvis.
Leena Palande
Last Updated: May 31, 2018
Only an ultrasound or amniotic fluid test (AFT) may help you know the sex of your baby. So, don't trust the old wives' tales. The popular belief that "carrying low in pregnancy indicates a boy" is not true. Actually, the tone of the pelvic and uterine muscles that hold the baby; and the position of the baby inside the uterus determine the shape and height of the expectant belly. So 'carrying baby low or high' has nothing to do with the sex of the baby.
Position of Your Baby and Shape of Your Tummy
Carrying low in pregnancy does not necessarily mean early delivery or shorter labor. The position of the fetus in the growing uterus determines the shape of your tummy. The positioning of your uterine and pelvic muscles which hold the baby, determine the position of the fetus. If your baby is positioned in the upper part of the uterus, they say that you are carrying high. On the contrary, if your baby is placed closer to the pelvis, you are said to be carrying baby low.
If you have tighter abdominal and uterine muscles then you are likely to have a higher baby bump. Most of the bump would be high on your abdomen. It can be just below the breast. Muscles become slightly weak with age and so, older women or women who already have one or more kids tend to have a sagging bump that's quite low. Have you ever noticed that short framed women have a wider bump? This is because the uterus does not have enough space to expand vertically. On the other hand, a narrow bump is usually seen in taller women. Thus, the shape of the tummy varies according to the body frame of the expecting mother.
How you would 'carry' your baby during pregnancy depends on your original build and frame, the tone of your pelvic/abdominal muscles and position of the baby. Generally, first babies are observed firmly hugging by the tummy muscles in a neat 'upright' position whereas second, third and later babies are likely to be less restricted and so more likely to lie low.
The shape of the growing abdomen depends on whether your baby is placed near the pelvis or near the breastbone. There is no need to panic if the position of the baby is near the pelvis. It does not directly increase the chances of miscarriage; but as the baby is positioned towards lower abdomen, any vigorous activity (lifting heavy objects) may push the baby downwards and may lead to early labor, premature delivery or even miscarriage. You need to take extra care and perform all activities cautiously. You need to take sufficient rest in order to avoid complications during childbirth.
There are examples of women 'carrying high' who had experienced shortest labor of only two hours while some women who were 'carrying low' were in labor for 15-18 hours. So 'carrying low or high' has got nothing to do with shorter or longer labor.
Maternity period is a crucial period of your life and you should not neglect any instructions given by your doctor. In fact, you should follow the instructions religiously, no matter you are carrying baby low or high. You should not pay heed to old wives' tales about pregnancy. Follow the advice of your doctor, eat healthy, exercise according to the instructions, take sufficient rest and stay happy!
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.
Pregnant woman
Smiling pregnant woman