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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the optimal viewing time?
  2. How far in advance should I make my appointment?
  3. What is the difference between 2D, 3D & 4D ultrasound?
  4. What are the benefits of a 3D/4D ultrasound session?
  5. What should I wear to my appointment and do I need a full bladder?
  6. How many people can I bring with me to my appointment?
  7. Am I guaranteed to find out the gender?
  8. What if my baby doesn't cooperate and we can't get pictures?
  9. How many pictures will I get on my CD?
  10. Is insurance accepted?
  11. Is ultrasound safe?

1. What is the optimal viewing time?

Visit our 3D 4D Ultrasound Calendar to find out the best time to make your appointment.

The baby starts gaining fat at 24 weeks, so by 26 weeks they typically have those nice chubby cheeks everyone loves to see. Therefore it is generally ideal to have your 3D 4D ultrasound session between 26 and 28 weeks. Sessions can often be successful beyond this point, but with each week the space remaining decreases.

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2. How far in advance should I make my appointment?

Make your appointment as soon as you know you want a 3D 4D ultrasound. Facilities often book several weeks in advance and the most popular days and hours go fast. Most locations have the ability to book several months in advance and frequently make appointments for women who just found out they were pregnant.

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3. What is the difference between 2D, 3D & 4D ultrasound?

Unlike traditional 2D imaging which only takes a look at the baby from one angle (thus creating the "flat" image), 3D imaging takes a view of the baby from three different angles. Software then takes these three images and merges them together to produce a mind blowing three dimensional image of your precious baby. Because the fourth dimension is time and movement, with 4D you are able to watch the live movements of your baby in 3D. You may catch him sticking out his tongue, or her waving hello!

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4. What are the benefits of a 3D/4D ultrasound session?

Although 3D/4D sessions are not necessary for diagnostic reasons, the benefits to the pregnancy are significant. The bonding experience that the mother - and often even more so the father - experiences from a 3D ultrasound session is enormous. Seeing a realistic view into the womb at the baby soon to be here makes the pregnancy much more real and often causes mothers to take better care of themselves in regards to diet, exercise, avoiding such things as alcohol consumption, smoking or being in close proximity to those that are smoking. For fathers, siblings, and even the extended family, the bonding experience acquired from a 3D session brings a sense of familial closeness during a very important time.

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5. What should I wear to my appointment and do I need a full bladder?

Wear something comfortable to your appointment. Only your belly will be exposed, so wear something that allows for easy access to your belly. Dresses are not recommended.

Happily, you do not need a full bladder for your session. However, bumping up your water intake for a few days before your appointment can help you have good amniotic fluid amounts. Fluid intake is extremely important throughout the pregnancy. Simply take in a little extra in the days before your appointment.

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6. How many people can I bring with me to my appointment?

That answer depends on the facility. Many scanning rooms can comfortably accommodate up to 8-9 people. Multiple viewing screens are usually provided so that everyone can easily see the session. Children are often welcome, but for children under 5, bring an adult to accompany Mom so that she can enjoy her session without the responsibility of watching any other children. If some loved ones cannot accompany you to your appointment, ask about 3D 4D Ultrasound Live Web Streaming.

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7. Am I guaranteed to find out the gender?

Many locations pride themselves on having never been wrong on a gender determination. Should they ever be wrong, many will issue a full refund equivalent to the fee for a basic gender check. Please see our 3D Ultrasound Calendar to find out the best time to schedule an appointment for gender determination.

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8. What if my baby doesn't cooperate and we can't get pictures?

Make your appointment early in your pregnancy - see our 3D Ultrasound Calendar for your best appointment times. Many facilities will guarantee at least 4 pictures through the 34th week of your pregnancy. If the operator can not obtain at least 4 images you will likely be invited back free of charge.

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9. How many pictures will I get on my CD?

Every picture that is taken during the session is typically included on a CD with the average for 3D/4D session being about 40-60 pictures.

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10. Is insurance accepted?

Because most 3D 4D scanning sessions are for non-diagnostic purposes, insurance usually does not provide coverage.

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11. Is ultrasound safe?

Ultrasound has been in use for over 35 years and no harmful effects have ever been shown from its responsible use to-date. The perfect example is a pregnancy which has been the result of invitro-fertilization. These women have a diagnostic ultrasound every week for the first several months of the pregnancy with no harmful results. Reputable and responsible 3D ultrasound centers limit scanning times to those much less than a typical 2D diagnostic scan. Though session times are often thirty to forty minutes, the actual time scanning in 3D is very limited. Because the ultrasound machine saves the live footage which is acquired in 4D, the bulk of the session is spent looking back through the saved footage, frame-by-frame, and taking the still 3D images.

While no detrimental effects have been proven from responsible use of ultrasound, the FDA and the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine discourage the use of ultrasound unless medically necessary.

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