If you want to find out the sex of your baby, you usually can during your second routine ultrasound scan (sonogram).
This scan is done when you are around 18 to 21 weeks pregnant, and its main purpose is to check for some physical abnormalities in the baby.
If you want to know your baby's sex, you should ask the sonographer (the person who carries out the scan) at the start of the scan, so they know that they need to check.
This is not an exact science and the sonographer will not be able to be 100% certain about your baby's sex. For example, if your baby is lying in an awkward position or moving around a lot, it may be difficult or impossible to tell whether your baby is male or female.
Some parents might be able to find out the sex of their baby if they choose to test for certain genetic abnormalities, such as Down's syndrome.
Some hospitals may have a policy of not telling parents the sex of their baby. If your hospital does not routinely inform parents about their baby's sex and you would still like to find out, you may be able to pay privately for a scan to find out. Speak to your sonographer or midwife to find out more.
Page last reviewed: 9 March 2018
Next review due: 9 March 2021