Welcome to your third and last trimester!
How are you holding up? Are you ready for the big day? I bet you are excited and anxious at the same time.
Third trimester is when pregnancy discomforts are at their peak.
I highly recommend for you to sleep it all of, if you can. You will missed your uninterrupted sleep. Cherish your last days of continuous quiet slumber.
Learn more about your first and second trimester on this related posts:
The most common pregnancy discomforts of your last trimester:
- Shortness of breath – this is due to your uterus starting to take up more room in your abdomen pressing the stomach and diaphragm up towards the lungs.
- Lower back pain
- Frequent urination
- Trouble sleeping
- Leg cramps – which is irritable as it can awaken you from a sound sleep.
Any more discomforts I should add to this? Let me know in the comments below.
Facts and Tips on your Third Trimester
1. More Frequent Prenatal Visits.
Your doctor will ask you to come in for more frequent check-ups. It can be from every other week to a weekly basis. Close monitoring of your health and the baby’s development is crucial so as to ensure that everything is okay.
Any form of vaginal spotting should be reported immediately to your doctor.
2. Glucose Tests
This is now a standard procedure for all pregnancies.
Usually done between 24-28 weeks, this test measure your body’s response to glucose to see whether you have gestational diabetes – a type of diabetes that only develops during pregnancy.
Learn more about Glucose Tests and gestational diabetes on this related posts:
3. Focus on Water, Fiber, Calcium and Vitamin C.
The first trimester required a lot of Folic acid for your baby’s neural system development to avoid risk of having spina bifida (a defect that occurs when the fetal spine does not close completely) or anencephaly (a defect that occurs when the fetal head and brain do not develop normally).
Folic acid is still part of your necessary intake but let me remind you to that calcium and vitamin C are used to build your baby’s bones and teeth and strengthen his immune system.
Water and fiber can aid in your constipation and hemorrhoid problems. Water is a must to keep your amniotic fluid intact, leveled and normal.
This is an important must-do thing before labor. Invest your time here. You will need it comes the big day.
Please do yourself a favor and do some cardio. Work that lungs out, expand it. There are many available pregnancy safe exercise videos on YouTube.
Walk far and often at your most comfortable phase. Stretch those muscles to help your baby descend in the right position for labor.
5. Fetal Movement Counts
There are helpful apps you can download to monitor your baby’s kicks and movement. The goal here is to know how long it takes your baby to make 10 movements.
6. Braxton Hicks Contractions
This is a tightening or contraction in your abdomen. It can be light or intense and it tend to occur more often and become stronger as your due date nears.
7. Stretchmarks and Linea Nigra
Linea Nigra is the vertical dark line that develops on your belly during pregnancy.
My stretchmarks started to show at 27 weeks. If you are one of the lucky few who have good genes then good for you. I am not though 🙁
How can you tell? Ask your mom if she had it. If yes, most chances are you got it too!
But don’t worry because once your baby is born, some of these streaks will slowly fade in color.
8. Shop on Baby Items
I recommend you do this on your 7th month while the energy level of the second trimester still lingers. Your bump is not too heavy yet and your feet is not too swollen either.
9. Nesting Instinct
Nesting is the overwhelming desire to get your home ready for your new baby.
This usually comes in after you shop for your baby as this entails you to arrange everything in its place. In line with the nesting instinct is the nursery room set-up and even to the extent of…
10. Packing your Hospital Bag
11. Developing a Birth Plan
This may not be for all, but for me its an essential. I want to discuss my options and expectations to my doctor.
I emphasized my request for the following things:
- Normal delivery as long as there’s no risk to both me and my baby
- Skin to skin contact
- My husband’s presence in the delivery room
- Episiotomy – a surgical cut made at the opening of the vagina during childbirth, to aid a difficult delivery
I knew that the birth plan will not go 100% as expected but knowing that I made myself clear on what I wish for them to do for me and the baby is reassuring.
12. Read and Research
Read and research. There are plenty of resources about pregnancy. The best books I found are:
- What To Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff
- Your Pregnancy and Childbirth by The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
Ask your mom community for support and guidance. I remember my mom tribe where all of us have due dates of the same month. We shared our concerns and preparations. My favorite part was when everyone starts to go in labor almost every other day. The moms share their labor stories reassuring all those still waiting for their big day. Up until now we still see each other’s baby progress.
13. Spend Quality Time with your Spouse/Partner
Cherish your days as a married couple instead of parents. Date nights are less likely once you have children. But keep in mind that…
Marriage is the foundation of a great family.
That’s a complete overview of the third trimester, I hope I didn’t forget anything major here.
Good luck on your pregnancy and happy third trimester!
For the Ultimate Pregnancy Checklist, please see this related post:
For the veteran and more experience moms, Is there anything I should add on this list? Let me know in the comments below.
If you find this Ultimate Third Trimester Checklist helpful, please share.