Have you just found out that you're pregnant? Perhaps you could have been pregnant for a while but don't know how far you are? Perhaps you want your friends or family present for your first dating scan. We provide a thorough wellbeing check of baby, and through accurate measurements, we're able to to both let you know how far you are (gestational age) and what your estimated due date would be.Book Now
Have you recently found out that you're pregnant, but you're confused about how many weeks pregnant you really are, or when your baby will be due, don't worry... you're not the only one. Often people measure the number of weeks from their last known menstrual period date (LMP) which is fine, but your baby won't have been conceived then, it's most likely sometime around 2 weeks after your LMP that your baby was created and started to grow.
Our dating scan is a short 2D (black and white) ultrasound scan to measure the size of the fetus to more accurately identify the GA (Gestational Age) and from this determine a due date
What is this scan for?
Short 2D scan to determine the age of your developing baby, and provide you with an estimated due date. This service is often provided as part of your NHS care, but we acknowledge that NHS scans do not offer the opportunity for friends or family to attend your scan and join in the experience.
And for all of our scans:
- No extra charge for twins
- No extra charge for evening appointments
- No extra charge for weekends
- No extra charge for PPE
Please note: At Your Baby Scan, we use an external, abdominal probe for all of our scans. In some instances you may think that you are 7 weeks (based on your last period) but are only 5 weeks. It can sometimes be difficult to see the fetus at less than 7 weeks. If during the scan you don't see your baby because it is less than 7 weeks old, we will offer you a rescan 1 - 2 weeks later at no extra charge.
Frequently asked questions
Is an ultrasound scan safe?
There is currently no evidence to suggest that ultrasound (including 4D Bonding Scans) are harmful, however, it is important that you have all of the facts about the risks associated with the procedure before coming to your decision on the matter. In general, it's recommended for good measure to keep your scan times to a minimum, and that this is particularly during the early stages of pregnancy, for this reason, we will end scans during the very early stages of pregnancy once we have been able to provide you with the reassurance that you seek.
The following links will help:
- Public Health England guidance
- NHS Fetal Anomaly Screening Programme
- Care Quality Commission (CQC) - Choosing a baby scanning service
- British Medical Ultrasound Society (BMUS)
- EFSUMB – European Federation of Societies for Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology
Whether you choose to have a scan with us or not, it is essential that you keep your NHS Ultrasound appointments.
Does ultrasound use radiation?
It is a very common misconception that because our 2D images show a cross-sectional image in black and white, which can similar to an X-Ray in appearance, that Ultrasound also uses Radiation to capture images. Ultrasound does not use radiation to create the images that you see. Instead ultrasound uses high frequency sound (beyond that audible by humans or animals) to produce the images that you see; much in the same way as a sonar on old submarines.
Can I listen to my baby's heartbeat during my scan?
In short, if your baby is measuring more than 16 weeks during your scan, yes. If your baby is measuring less than 16 weeks, no.
We follow the guidance of many organisations including BMUS, SoR, EFSUMB and ISUOG which recommends against high power ultrasound modes during the earlier stages of ultrasound when the organs and development of the fetus may be affected by tissue heating. Whilst there are no recorded cases of adverse effects of tissue heating on the development of a fetus, the effects are considered unknowns and therefore advice is to not take any risks. BMUS guidelines are not based in weeks, but to ensure that a fetus is not put at risk our safety cut off is 16 weeks onwards.
Who can I bring to my scan?
Here at Your Baby Scan we want your experience to be the complete opposite to your NHS scan. We know that they only allow 2 people to your scans. We want you to be able to share your experience with your mum, dad, nan, gran, aunt and uncle and even your neighbour!
At the moment the number of people allowed to attend your appointment is dependent on COVID restrictions at the point in time and you should always check our COVID restrictions page before you visit for the most up to date information.
Typically we allow yourself plus either:
- 3 adult guests plus any dependent children
- 5 adult guests
We have a large TV screen in Widnes, and an even bigger projection screen on the wall in Crewe, so everyone can see.
Please note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic there may be additional restrictions to how many people can attend your appointment with you, please see our latest COVID-19 restrictions. Whilst restrictions are in place, our Your Baby Scan Live service will be available for free of charge for friends and family to join your scan from the safety of their own homes.
Do you charge more for twins or more babies?
No, although we would suggest a 30 minute appointment to ensure you get plenty of time to see all of your babies, you are more than welcome to come to one of our standard appointments if you have twins and you will not be charged any extra. This simply allows less time to see each of your twins.
Do I still need to have my NHS appointment?
YES, absolutely! Our sonographers want to make sure you see your baby and don't carry out a full abnormality check during your scan. Our sonographers will perform a wellbeing check during your scan, but this does not go into the level of detail required during an abnormality scan, which by itself could take up the entire time that you appointment is planned for, and would leave no time for you to bond with your baby or see them in 3D/4D. As a result, the wellbeing check doesn't cover all the things that your midwife needs to see and know so its best to still keep up with all of your NHS scans and appointments.
What if the sonographer does pick up on something?
Whilst we don’t go out of the way looking for problems, if our sonographer does notice something unusual then with your permission we will refer you to your midwife or local hospital and our sonographer will provide you will a clinical report of our findings and letter to take with you.
Each of our sonographers are fully qualified in performing diagnostic obstetric ultrasound scans, so they are more than capable of measuring for example the amount of fluid around baby, or nuchal translucency inline with NHS and UK protocols, but they will not perform these measurements unless they happen to have a cause for concern.
Our sonographers will absolutely not hide away from telling you if there is something wrong.
Do I need a full bladder for my early scan?
For all scans up to 21 weeks we require a full bladder prior to scanning. Filling your bladder helps to lift baby out of the pelvis and make it easier (and therefore clearer) to see which is essential for checking baby's wellbeing.
Anything you drink can take around 20-30 minutes to get to your bladder so we recommend drinking around 2-3 pints of water 20-30 before your appointment time so that it has time to fill up. Anything you drink after you arrive for your appointment is likely to be filling your bladder after your scan has been completed which could make for an uncomfortable journey home.
I have bleeding or pain, can I have an appointment?
If you are experiencing bleeding or pain it is essential that you contact your NHS clinical care team in the first instance. They will most likely want to provide you with a scan, and will have clinicians and facilities available if you need urgent treatment which will not be available in our clinic
How old do I need to be to have an appointment?
At Your Baby Scan we have a strict policy of only providing ultrasound scans for people aged 16 and over. For young people aged between 16 and 18, whilst we do not require a parent or legal guardian to attend your appointment with you, we strongly recommend that they attend with you to provide you with the guidance and support during your appointment.
Unfortunately we do not routinely allow ultrasound appointments for young people aged 16-18 years prior to 9 weeks (Dating Scan).
How often can I come for an appointment?
Some people will want to visit us once during their pregnancy, and others will want to visit us multiple times. We recommend spacing all ultrasound appointments 4-8 weeks apart where possible to keep the amount of time that your baby is exposed to ultrasound to a minimum. Though there is no clinical evidence that ultrasound can cause any harm to your development baby, this is precautionary. You should consider that your NHS appointments will be fairly fixed points during your pregnancy, with your NHS Dating Scan around 10-14 weeks, and your NHS Abnormality Scan 18-21 weeks.
Whilst you can come sooner than 4-8 weeks, you should let your sonographer (private or NHS) know if you have had a scan less than 2 weeks ago so that this can be taken into consideration when taking measurements.