Unborn Baby's Life Saved by Movement Braceletby Laura Driver
Baby Emily was born safe and well weighing a healthy 6lbs 14oz when mum Lyndsey Thompson went to hospital a week before her due date after realising from her maternity movement bracelet tracker that her unborn baby's movement had drastically slowed down.
Lyndsey, from Shropshire, said: "The bracelet saved my baby's life. I definitely credit it for ensuring she made it safely in the world because I was worried something was going to go wrong. It gave me the confidence to go to the doctors with my concerns because I had proof from the bracelet and could tell them exactly how many times she'd moved. It was great having that reassurance and to know I wasn't wasting the doctors' time. It's incredible that something as simple as a bracelet could do all that."
Lyndsey used a prototype of the Aska Maternity Movement Bracelet. The bracelet features a small loop and charm that the wearer slips across each bead on the bracelet every time the baby moves.
Lyndsey who is a primary school teacher, and also mum to Chloe, aged six said: "When I was pregnant with my first I tried a phone app to track movements but obviously you can't have a phone at school. I was so busy even at lunchtime and by the time I got to the end of the day, I wouldn't be able to remember what movements I've had. At my 20-week scan, my midwife offered me a bracelet that was being used in trials as I'd mentioned reduced movement in my first pregnancy. Having the bracelet reassured me that I'd had a certain number of movements. The bracelet helped if I felt movement while I was teaching, I might be sat with a group of children and could just put my hand on the bracelet and move it across.I would also show the children the bracelet and involve them too, which was nice."
But when Lyndsey said she noticed Emily's movements started to slow down at 34 weeks, concerned doctors took growth scans every few weeks to monitor her progress.
NHS guidance states that if mums-to-be notice their baby is moving less than usual, or there's a change in the pattern of movements, it may be the first sign their baby is unwell.
The NHS also urges mums-to-be to contact a midwife or local maternity unit immediately if the baby's movements have slowed down so their wellbeing can be assessed.
Lyndsey said: "As the weeks went on, past the 20-week point, I felt the movements were getting less and less. After having a growth scan they said she was slightly on the low side and to monitor them as time passed. I would normally have between six and eight movements a day when I was only having three and it was later in the day I decided to get it checked out. Directly off the back of me saying she hasn't moved as much as she should have done they put the bands round and monitored her heart rate. Because I'd had a number of issues in the pregnancy - including reduced movements - they offered to induce me. I was a bit worried at first, and had a sleepless night worrying something would go wrong, but there was a real risk of leaving it and not doing anything."
Seven months on, Lyndsey has kept the bracelet as a memento and plans to show Emily the life-saving piece of jewellery when she's older. Lyndsey said: I'm keeping the bracelet as a keepsake - to show my daughter what I used to make sure she was ok. I would definitely recommend it to other mums."
The bracelet is the brainchild of mum and NHS worker Louise Macleod who has now teamed up with Davidov London Jewellery. Davidov London Jewellery CEO Natasha Davidov said: "We are extremely proud that we are able to support expectant mums with a pretty and practical tool in the form of a lovely piece of jewellery that can provide reassurance and potentially save babies' lives, which now is as important as ever. The bracelet can be used even after the pregnancy like a feeding reminder and that makes it every mum's loyal companion and a sentimental memento to treasure forever."