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How Do Infants Breathe within the Womb? Nurse’s Viral Clarification

How do infants breathe within the womb? I actually do not know! I’ve had three children and I’ve by no means even thought-about how they breathe in there, particularly when they’re surrounded by water.

Fortunately Nurse Jen is aware of the reply and has defined it to us. Right here’s the way it works:

How do infants breathe within the womb? We’ll present you! 

Nurse Jen Hamilton shared her easy-to-understand rationalization of how infants breathe within the womb on her TikTok account and we, like hundreds of others who’ve watched it, are blown away.

Earlier than she explains how infants breathe in the womb she solutions one other query you in all probability didn’t realise you wanted to know the reply to. How do infants swim round in a pool of water for 9 months and never have their pores and skin wrinkle and peel off?

The reply: Vernix, the thick waxy substance that covers bub’s pores and skin. This vernix is liable for defending their pores and skin from falling off whereas they relax in amniotic fluid for a number of months. Is smart, proper?

Doctor Puts Her Own Birth On Hold To Deliver Baby
Vernix. The last word in child skincare! Supply: Bigstock

However what about the entire respiration factor? When infants are in utero they don’t use their lungs to breathe. The truth is, their lungs are crammed with fluid which helps to assist their improvement and progress.

“Whereas your child is within you, there are two vessels. These vessels bypass the lungs trigger it’s getting all of its oxygen from you,” Nurse Jen explains.

As a substitute of respiration by their lungs, oxygen is provided to bub by the umbilical wire.

How do infants comprehend it’s time to start out respiration on their very own?

Okay, so how do infants know that they should breathe after they come out of the womb then? This half is de facto cool. As Nurse Jen explains, all of it comes right down to a particular nerve of their face that alerts them that now it’s time to breathe.

“When the child’s face hits air, there’s a nerve within the face known as the trigeminal nerve. That tells the child, ‘I want to breathe air now’ and it begins to modify its circulation from the umbilical wire to air,” Nurse Jen shares.

The change doesn’t occur instantly and it could actually take a couple of minutes for the child to get the trace that it’s time to breathe on their very own, which is why delayed wire clamping is so necessary.

Now, another query – what occurs to all of the water within the child’s lungs?  Nurse Jen has a wonderfully logical rationalization for that too:

“When the child will get pushed by the delivery canal, their chest will get squeezed which may push out among the fluid that’s of their lungs.”

She additionally goes on to clarify that always infants which are born by way of c-section might have slightly little bit of hassle making this respiration transition.

Infants and hiccups

Okay, one closing enjoyable reality. It’s truly hiccups which are liable for instructing your child learn how to breathe within the womb.

“Below your child’s lungs is a muscle known as the diaphragm. Hiccups are a spasm of the diaphragm. Each time we get hiccups it sucks air into our lungs actually shortly, which is what makes that sound when air passes by our vocal cords.”

She goes on to clarify that when infants get hiccups the spasm is increasing their lungs by filling with amniotic fluid, which is how infants apply respiration. My third infant was a Hiccup Queen in utero – guess she wanted all of the apply she may get!

It’s quite a bit to absorb nevertheless it’s fairly cool, proper? New reality of the day, unlocked.

Try Jen’s now-viral video under for her easy rationalization of all of it.


#sew with @Cori

♬ authentic sound – Jen Hamilton

What to learn subsequent

If you happen to’re in search of extra enjoyable information about infants take a look at:



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