Doppler Use at Home

Cynthia Flynn's picture


Dear Midwife,
I have rented a doppler so I can hear my baby's heart beat at home. Its the same one the doctors use at the office.

But I can't seem to hear the baby heart beat like we did in the doctors office. All I hear is my own heart beat.

I am wondering if something is wrong, if there is still a live fetus.

I am not bleeding at all. Can you help me and give me some info on this?



Because of exactly what is happening to you, I am not a big fan of home dopplers. I really do not want moms to be worrying all the time, and they have not been to school to learn the proper use of dopplers, so they are not especially good at it.

I would rather have a woman come in to see me if she is worried, so it gets done right, and she gets reassured and can relax. But what I like even better is for a woman to learn to know what is going on in her own body, so she can tell by herself whether everything is normal.

All this dependence on ultrasounds, dopplers and other mechanical devices takes away from the power of a woman to connect directly with her baby before it is even born. We have taught young women that they only way they can know about their baby is by having machines tell them things, and that is just not true.

Congratulations on your pregnancy, and here's wishing you a lovely pregnancy and safe delivery.

-- Cynthia, CNM