Friday 13 March 2015

PREGNANCY: Ultrasound Direct Babybond Private 4D Scan Review

Back when I was 16 weeks pregnant we booked in for a private gender scan, through the tummy2mummy website. We went to the Hinckley centre and we were initially really impressed with the service. The room where we had the scan was really big, so you could fit lots of family and friends in and the lady doing the scan was nothing but friendly and professional. It was incredible seeing how much our baby had grown from the NHS 12 week scan to the 16 week scan and we were informed we were having a little girl! The disappointment started when we received the 2D pictures the lady had printed off during our scan. They we're cut wonky, you couldn't see anything in the pictures and the quality of the 'photo paper' was simply rubbish. I wouldn't have minded too much but the scan had cost us around £60, a lot for a 30 minute appointment, especially when the quality of the part you get to take away is so bad. Unfortunately we didn't look at the pictures until we were back at home, at which point it was too late to complain. It was such a dampener on an otherwise positive experience.
Fast forward to 30 weeks pregnant and I started looking at the options for 4D scans, going through a different company this time. I have always wanted a 4D scan, mainly because I want a DVD of our baby while they're inside me still. I just think it will be such a special video to look back on and something pretty incredible to share with our daughter when she grows up. 4D scans seem to be a bit of a love/hate thing - a lot of people I know think the babies look like aliens in them and they are far too expensive. Others love the chance to see their baby again, as well as capturing it. I'm definitely in the second camp of people - I couldn't wait to see our daughter again and make sure everything was still ok. 

After some research I settled on booking a Babybond 4D scan through Ultrasound Direct, they have a wide range of locations, appointment times and packages on offer. I initially heard about them at the Kiddicare in Peterborough because that's one of their locations. They are also in some Mothercare stores, as well as stand alone centres. We considered visiting the Peterborough, Leicester, Coventry or Kettering centres but finally settled on the Kettering one due to the available appointment times. I hadn't realised that the 4D scan is recommended up to 32 weeks pregnant and I was just starting to look into it at 30 weeks! I booked a weekday evening appointment straight away, for their 4D Scan Option II package (£139). 
These are the options of scans you can have through the ultrasound-direct website, as well as when it is advised to have them:   

Above is a list of the features included in the 4D Option II Scan, I was most excited about the DVD but it was nice to know we'd get a couple more photos of our baby before she's born too. 

The next available appointment when I was looking was a couple of days before I turned 32 weeks pregnant, so I was right on the borderline for timings. I presume it's because the baby gets too big to get good images of during the scan. The appointment was so easy to book - you simply choose your scan (the highlighted blue section shows the scans I could choose from), choose the location, date and time,  pay a £30 deposit and that's it! Very easy and quick system. They then offer any advice (e.g. Full bladder needed) - the only advice for my scan was to wear a skirt/trouser and top so that hey can easily access my tummy. Easy enough to do!
The 4D scan was everything I had hoped for and more, I can't recommend having one highly enough. To see our daughter smiling, moving, covering her face with her hands (clearly camera shy!) and seeing which position she was in was just perfect. We were both surprised at how clear the images are - you really can see their little features. They also told us her size and estimated weight - she measured as one week ahead and her weight was around 4lb 10oz's, which sounded a lot to me! We watched her wriggling around on a big screen, which is the image that's recorded for the DVD. The pictures and DVD we left with were outstanding quality, we can't stop staring at them! Next time we see our daughter it will probably be in real life :)

Did you opt for a 4D scan?

Feel free to leave me a comment :)

Helen x

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