It’s official: you’re pregnant! Your baby is developing rapidly every single day and your body may be experiencing just as many changes. However, despite all of the ups and downs that you might be encountering (morning sickness, anyone?) there’s really only one question on everyone’s mind as soon as you start to announce your pregnancy…
Are you having a boy or a girl?
It’s exciting to think that as soon as you become pregnant, the biological sex is decided. However, depending on how you became pregnant, and how far along you are, you may not yet know what you’re carrying!
So, what do you say when you get that all too common question, “what are you having?” Here’s when you can actually find out the sex of your baby.
When and How Can I Find Out My Baby’s Sex?
There are a myriad of ways you can discover your baby’s sex (if you choose to know) during the course of your pregnancy. That’s why the answer to when can you find out the sex of your baby is… it depends.
Most commonly, women find out the sex of their baby via a routine ultrasound.
While your baby’s genitals are already developing during week 6 of pregnancy, it’s usually too difficult for an ultrasound to determine what they are at your first viability ultrasound (generally between 8 and 12 weeks). More commonly, an ultrasound will be able to tell you “boy or girl” at closer to 20 weeks of pregnancy when you have what’s called an “anatomy scan”.
You can also discover the sex via a blood test.
If you choose to have noninvasive prenatal testing (NIPT), you’ll have a blood test which can detect Down syndrome and a few other chromosomal conditions at around 10 weeks of pregnancy. This same test can also be used to determine if you’re having a boy or a girl, as it looks for pieces of the male sex chromosome. Not everyone chooses to have these tests – be sure to consult with your doctor about what’s right for you.
Genetic testing or amniocentesis can also tell you “boy or girl”.
During a genetic test like chorionic villus sampling (CVS) or amniocentesis, which can detect genetic disorders or chromosomal abnormalities, you may also be able to find out the sex of your baby. If you choose to have these tests, CVS is usually done around 13 weeks of pregnancy, and amniocentesis is usually done anytime after 14 weeks. Talk to your doctor if you are interested in having these tests done.
When can you find out the sex of your baby if you’ve undergone IVF?
If you’ve achieved pregnancy through fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF), then it’s possible you might know the sex of your baby as soon as you become pregnant! If you decide to have preimplantation genetic testing during in vitro fertilization (IVF), your embryos are tested for genetic or chromosomal abnormalities and sex. Preimplantation genetic testing is almost 100 percent accurate in determining the sex of the embryos.
Therefore, if you try to get pregnant with just one of those embryos at a time, you probably know the sex before it has even implanted. Pretty cool!
No matter when you find out the sex of your baby, sharing the news can be so exciting.
Whether you wait until your baby is born or you find out using one of the methods we shared above, the news will be special to you. Keep it private, share it with the world – whatever you and your partner decide will be absolutely perfect, just like your little one.
Are you looking for an OB/Gyn you can trust? Do you live in the Tucson area? Let us join you on your amazing and unique pregnancy journey. Book an appointment today!