Frequently Asked Questions about Ultrasounds near Olympia
If you’re a newly expectant mother or just new to 3D & 4D ultrasounds, you may have questions. We’ve compiled a list of common questions and answer from our past clients that tackle many thoughts and concerns new to this field. If you can’t find the answer to what you’re looking for below, please feel to reach out.
What is an elective prenatal ultrasound?
An elective 3D/4D prenatal ultrasound can provide a more detailed image than traditional black and white 2D imaging. 3D/4D is an experience that can provide a positive bonding experience for Mother, Father and family members of the unborn baby. Being able to see a realistic picture of your baby’s movements, sucking their thumb, smacking their lips, wiggling fingers and toes provides a greater connection to baby. We make no claims that 3D/4D ultrasound technology in this examination at our facility is used to assess the baby for abnormalities. A routine ultrasound examination at a medical facility should have already been performed to assess the gestational age of the fetus and to evaluate for fetal abnormalities as recommended for screening during your pregnancy.
Does this replace the utlrasound at my Dr.'s office?
ABSOLUTELY NOT!! This is strictly an elective and non-medical ultrasound session. You must be already BE receiving prenatal care with a qualified healthcare provider including medical testing and a diagnostic ultrasound as ordered by your physician. This means you must bring proof that you are being seen by a Dr. to your appointment at our office. This elective ultrasound is a basic scan that can confirm heartbeat, position, number of babies in the pregnancy and gender. Diagnostic ultrasounds screen your baby for any genetic, chromosomal, or physical abnormalities. This ultrasound should not be confused with or take the place of ANY ultrasound ordered by your physician.
Do I need an appointment?
YES! All of our sessions are by appointment only. Please refer to our information about when is the best time for you to come in for your ultrasound. Please try to schedule all appointments 2 weeks in advance. For weekend, Holiday and Evening appointments we especially encourage you to schedule in advance. However, there may be a same day appointment available to don’t hesitate to call!
Is an elective 3D/4D ultrasound safe?
Extensive studies over 35 years have found that Ultrasound has not been shown to cause any harmful bio effects to mother or baby. Routine scans of all pregnancies are now normal throughout the United States. 3D/4D ultrasound uses exactly the same frequency and intensity as conventional 2D ultrasound used in diagnostics. Ultrasound is using high frequency sound waves with no radiation.
How long will my appointment be?
Appointment times will vary from approximately 15 mins to one hour depending on the type of service you are requesting. We want to make sure we have plenty of time to obtain the best possible images of your baby and not feel rushed.
Is this elective ultrasound covered or paid for by insurance?
Unfortunately no. At this time insurance does not cover an elective ultrasound session. You will need to bring payment for the cost of this ultrasound at the time of the appointment. We accept cash, Visa, MasterCard and debit cards. Sorry no personal checks.
In 2016, the average mother had 3 ultrasounds averaging $686 when performed at a hospital.
Do I need to bring anything with me to my ultrasound appointment?
We require that all of our clients are under the care of a medical professional for the pregnancy and have had their due date assigned by a Dr. or midwife. When you come in for your appointment please bring proof of this care. You can bring an appointment card or documentation of a Dr.’s appointment, a prior ultrasound picture from a diagnostic scan, or written approval from your Dr. or Midwife.
Can I bring my friends and family?
Yes! In fact we encourage our clients to invite family and friends to attend the ultrasound session. This is a joyous and wonderful experience that everyone wants to be a part of. Currently with Covid 19 restrictions we are limiting everyone to groups of 8 including the Mom and including children. Please be courteous to other groups in the office as we are trying to not have the office overcrowded. Please check out Covid 19 precautions page for more info.
Will I always get a beautiful picture of my baby like I see on the website?
Usually, but not always. With every ultrasound we perform, we do our best to capture the best 3D/4D images possible. Imaging quality can be limited to low and/or cloudy amniotic fluid, late gestational age, unfavorable fetal lie (position) or maternal body habitus (weight, build, size, structure). Sometimes if the baby is persistently looking face down, i.e. towards mom’s spine it may be difficult to see the baby’s face. If this happened, a repeat scan will usually succeed because baby has turned to a favorable position. Keep in mind every mom and baby are different. We will do our best to get as many great pictures of whatever part of baby we can see. If we are unable to get satisfactory images we will schedule a second try appointment, however this appointment needs to be during the week.
How can I help get the best pictures of my baby?
WATER, WATER, WATER. It is very important that you stay hydrated at all times during your pregnancy, but being hydrated is very important to obtaining the best pictures with 3D/4D. We suggest to our clients that mom drinks extra water for the 3 days leading up to the ultrasound. Second, pay attention to what time of day your baby is most active, and schedule an appointment during that time of day. Third, pay attention to whether eating or drinking affect your baby’s energy levels and try to eat or not eat right before your ultrasound. Many babies perk up when Mom drinks something cold and/or fruity. In that case we recommend that mom drinks a bottle of juice, or a fruit smoothie on the way to the appointment. Please avoid caffeine!! In my experience it has the opposite effect, and puts Baby to sleep.
What if you are unable to determine the gender of my baby?
We can get an indication of baby’s gender as early as 13 weeks. In MOST cases we can provide an indication of the sex of the baby. We can’t however guarantee that the baby will cooperate during your session. Certain factors such as position, placental placement, developmental stage, mother’s body tissue content can all affect the ability to determine sex. If due to circumstances we are unable to determine the gender of your baby we will offer one return visit to take a second look. We offer a 100% Guarantee on Gender Determination. This must be booked within one month. For our full-figured moms, it is best to wait until 26 to 34 weeks for a 3D/4D scan and approximately 17 weeks of gestation for gender determination for the best view. However, we will always do our best!
What if I do NOT want to know the sex of my baby?
We have many moms and dads who do not want to know baby’s gender until the birthday. There is no problem having this remarkable 3D/4D ultrasound session performed without determining the gender.
When is the best time to do a 3D/4D ultrasound?
The best time for a 3D/4D ultrasound is 26 to 34 weeks gestation. However excellent pictures with 3D can be obtained at almost any time of pregnancy. Below are some examples of babies at different stages so you have an idea what to expect, and plan your visit. 24 to 28 weeks of pregnancy is a great time, however baby is still on the smaller and thinner side. . Many mothers choose to have more than one 3D/4D ultrasound to have images from their second and third trimesters to enjoy. What Baby will look like depends on how far along you are. We can often get great pictures of the whole baby curled up and moving around, and we can see the features of Baby’s face but they are still a little on the thinner side. If you are wanting to see Baby’s features well, and a fuller face with chubby cheeks, we recommend that you wait until after 28 weeks of pregnancy. Where the placenta is placed often affects the quality and ability to obtain pictures. If you have an anterior or front placenta, we recommend that you come right around 28 weeks. Don’t hesitate to call and make an appointment even if you are further along in pregnancy. We have gotten great images on babies all the way up to 39 weeks!
What if I want to have multiple scans with my pregnancy? What is suggested?
We recommend we you check out our Pregnancy Journey Package- this was specifically designed to see Baby every step of the way. -1st ultrasound – 2D imaging less than 20 weeks. Either an early first peek from 8 to 13 weeks or gender determination starting at 13 weeks. -2nd ultrasound – 3D/4D imaging session between 20-26 weeks’ gestation. -3rd ultrasound – 3D/4D imaging session between 26 to 34 weeks’ gestation