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Baby With Big Lips on Ultrasound: Should You Be Worried?

Anticipating the arrival of your little one is an emotional rollercoaster. We can only imagine your excitement when you catch a glimpse of your baby’s features in ultrasound pictures.

So, if you notice your baby with big lips on ultrasound, we understand your concern and curiosity.

When it comes to your baby’s lip size, there are a few reasons they may appear larger than they actually are. Distortion, shadows, or puffiness from the amniotic fluid can all contribute to this visual impression.

We’ll take a closer look at these causes and help you navigate this sometimes perplexing pregnancy journey with greater peace of mind.


  1. Unveiling the Precision and Boundaries of Ultrasound Imaging
  2. Exploring the Factors Behind a Baby’s Prominent Lips on Ultrasound
  3. What to Do When You Observe Your Baby’s Enlarged Lips on Ultrasound

Ultrasound Accuracy and Limitations

Ultrasound image showcasing baby's facial profile with prominent lips

Image Source: A Date With Baby

Pregnancy ultrasounds are remarkable tools that use sound waves to project an image of your developing baby. What you see on the bedside monitor or in ultrasound photos are echoes bouncing off your baby.

Ultrasound imaging helps doctors assess fetal growth, monitor well-being, and detect congenital abnormalities. However, it doesn’t always provide a complete and accurate depiction of your baby’s health.

You’ll get incredible insights into the womb but not a crystal-clear picture of your baby’s facial features. Lips, in particular, can be challenging to visualize because of their soft and pliable nature.

Ultrasound cannot capture precise details, especially with its grainy black-and-white output. A lot depends on your pregnancy stage, the quality of the machine, and your baby’s position in your belly.

Possible Causes of Baby With Big Lips on Ultrasound

In some ultrasound images, you might encounter a peculiar phenomenon known as “duck lips.” This term describes the appearance of your baby’s lips when they protrude prominently.

Ultrasound images capture moments in time and are subject to the dynamic feature of fetal development. In other words, you may observe your baby with big lips on ultrasound, but they can also appear smaller or proportionate in follow-up scans.

Let’s explore the many possible explanations your baby’s lips look puckered up on ultrasound:

Distortion by Ultrasound Technology

Ultrasounds send sound waves through skin, tissues, and that little pool of amniotic fluid your little one is swimming in. They create echoes in the womb, reflecting an image of your baby and other structures in your belly.

Several factors can interfere with the ultrasound picture quality. For instance, fat and air can mess up the resolution of ultrasound photos.

Overlying fat tissues can distort and scatter the ultrasound beam before it reaches your baby. Similarly, gas can disrupt sound waves. It’s why bones don’t show up in ultrasound—they have air pockets in them!

But don’t worry too much about getting those extra layers of fluff or some gas going on. Ultrasound technicians are pros at getting the best possible images of your baby.

You may get the occasional quirky images of your baby’s lips, but ultrasounds are reliable at guiding your prenatal care.


Ultrasounds performed later in pregnancy may be less reliable in capturing your baby’s picture. As they grow bigger, your baby is getting pretty crowded in there!

With less space to maneuver, they’re pressing more on your bladder or snuggling up against your uterine wall.

Now, imagine your face smooshed against a glass. Not exactly the most flattering look, right? Well, something similar can happen to your baby’s features during an ultrasound. Even the cutest button nose and lips can appear squished and distorted that way.


Your little munchkin spends significant time floating in amniotic fluid as your pregnancy progresses.

Here’s the thing: your baby’s skin and tissues are super delicate at this stage. So when you check out your ultrasound, your baby’s facial features may appear extra plump.

This temporary swelling can give the impression of big lips. But don’t worry; it goes away on its own once your baby makes the grand entrance into the world. You’ll be amazed how they can lose all that puffiness within just a week or so after birth.


Shadows in ultrasound images can obscure certain areas and create the illusion of exaggerated lips. Think of shining a flashlight on your face from below.

For example, a shadow concealing your baby’s chin can make your baby’s lips look like it’s sticking out more than it actually is.

Baby’s Movements

If you ever see those ultrasound photos not as clear as you’d hoped, it’s probably your baby keeping things interesting in there. You see, babies twist, turn, and do their little dance moves in the womb.

And you know what?

Babies suck on their lower lips to soothe themselves. This natural sucking reflex can push the upper lip outward and make it appear larger.

So, if you notice your baby with big lips on ultrasound, it might just mean they’re getting practice feeding!

Baby’s Angle and Positioning

Your baby’s position can play tricks on ultrasound images. Your baby might be at an angle where their face or specific areas are hiding or not showing up clearly on the screen.

Sometimes, babies love putting their hands on their faces, covering up their adorable features.

So what you might think are super-sized lips could just be a sneaky finger getting in the way.

What You Can Do If You Notice Your Baby With Big Lips on Ultrasound

If you still have lingering concerns, here are some steps you can take:

Schedule a Follow-Up Ultrasound

You can discuss the possibility of a follow-up checkup and ultrasound with your healthcare provider if your worries persist.

You’re the best advocate your baby can have, so don’t hesitate to ask questions and express your concerns.

Remember, your doctor has seen thousands of ultrasounds before. They’ll know if big lips are a natural variation or if further evaluation is required.

Consider a Second Opinion

If you need reassurance and clarification, you can seek a second opinion from another specialist. They can provide additional insights and help you overcome doubts and uncertainties.

A fresh perspective may give you a clearer understanding of your baby’s lip size and other ultrasound-related issues.

Connect With Other Parents

Online forums and communities of parents can be valuable resources of comfort and support during your pregnancy. These platforms provide a space where you can engage with individuals who understand the journey you’re on.

You might be surprised to learn that 3D ultrasound big lips aren’t all that uncommon. Many have gone through similar stories and found their babies are nothing like their ultrasound snapshots once they were born.

However, any information you get from your online support group shouldn’t replace professional medical advice.

Focus on Self-Care and Stress Management

While waiting for your next ultrasound, focus on caring for yourself and nurturing a positive mindset. You can try stress management techniques like deep breathing or meditation.

Surround yourself with loved ones who can provide emotional support and encouragement during this time.

Final Thoughts

If you notice your baby with big lips on ultrasound, it’s only natural to feel apprehensive. But remember, ultrasound imaging isn’t infallible and doesn’t always reflect the true cuteness of your little one.

In most cases, big lips observed on ultrasound are likely an imaging issue rather than an actual cause for alarm.

Soon enough, you’ll have your little bundle of joy in your arms, and those weird ultrasound photos will be a distant memory!

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