Home Health and Wellness Tips What you can expect in your third trimester of pregnancy

What you can expect in your third trimester of pregnancy

20 min read

Welcome to the house stretch! Now that you’ve reached week 28 of your pregnancy, it’s nearly time to lastly meet your infant. Your child will probably be thought of full-term as soon as you attain week 39, and the massive day usually arrives round week 40. Remember, your due date is an estimation – you might ship a bit after or earlier than the precise 40-week mark.

In the meantime, learn on to study what you can expect through the subsequent few weeks. We’ve additionally supplied solutions to some of the commonest questions parents-to-be have concerning the third trimester.

Common third trimester signs

Every pregnancy is completely different, however listed below are a number of frequent modifications to your physique that you can expect through the third trimester. Your child grows so much throughout this trimester – their weight will triple and even quadruple. Between that and the hormonal modifications you’ve been experiencing all through pregnancy, you might discover that signs you skilled in earlier trimesters proceed and turn into extra intense.

Aches and pains

During pregnancy, the hormone relaxin prepares your physique for childbirth by loosening the ligaments in your pelvis and, finally, softening and widening your cervix. While this helps make childbirth simpler, it signifies that your muscular tissues must work tougher to help your child’s rising weight. This can result in extra discomfort, significantly in your again, pelvis and legs.

Sleep issues

You might have skilled pregnancy fatigue in the primary trimester whereas your physique went via hormone modifications and started to develop the placenta and fetus. Fatigue can also be a standard symptom in the third trimester, but it surely’s normally as a result of you is probably not sleeping as effectively or as comfortably as earlier than. There are so much of issues which may be waking you up all through the evening, together with varied aches and pains, frequent urination and heartburn.


Those rest hormones additionally chill out your abdomen valve, which makes it simpler for abdomen acid to get via and trigger heartburn. Now, as your rising child presses up from beneath your abdomen, this will likely turn into extra frequent.

Heartburn can be diminished by avoiding fatty and spicy meals, citrus, caffeine and carbonated drinks, and by consuming smaller, extra frequent meals. You can additionally take oral antacids, but when these aren’t sufficient to alleviate your heartburn, speak to your care supplier. They could possibly prescribe an anti-heartburn medicine that’s secure for your child.

Braxton Hicks contractions

Braxton Hicks contractions are false labor contractions. They can occur all through pregnancy, however they usually turn into extra frequent and intense in your third trimester. Some individuals might not really feel these contractions in any respect, or they could be robust sufficient to be mistaken for true labor contractions.

Braxton Hicks contractions normally have irregular intervals and keep comparatively constant in energy. They additionally subside over time, particularly with modifications in place or after ingesting water. This is completely different from true labor contractions, which turn into stronger and extra frequent as they progress.

If you aren’t positive about what you’re feeling, or you expertise contractions with different indicators that labor is beginning, name your care supplier and be ready to go to a hospital if wanted.

Frequent urination or incontinence

The greater your child will get, the extra strain they placed on your bladder. So in the third trimester, you might discover that you’re making extra journeys to the lavatory. You may discover that the added strain causes urine to leak when you do issues like snort, cough, bend over or decide issues up. This is a kind of pelvic flooring dysfunction referred to as stress incontinence. It typically goes away in the months following childbirth, however might require strengthening the pelvic flooring muscular tissues.


When you’re pregnant, your physique’s blood quantity will increase considerably and retains fluids otherwise to help your child. So, it’s regular to expertise some gentle swelling in your arms, face, legs, ankles or ft – particularly as you get nearer to childbirth.

Swelling might enhance after lengthy durations of standing, exercise or spending time in sizzling environments (similar to being in the solar throughout summer season). However, contact your care supplier if you discover sudden swelling in your arms or face, as it might be an indication of preeclampsia, a pregnancy complication involving hypertension and doable organ injury if left untreated.

Skin modifications

As your pores and skin continues to stretch, you might discover stretch marks showing on your breasts, abdomen and thighs. This might include itchiness. In addition, the pigmentation of your pores and skin might turn into extra pronounced, main to paint patches round your physique.

Varicose veins

It’s frequent to develop varicose (swollen) veins consequently of elevated blood quantity and the strain the newborn places on blood vessels in your pelvic area. Varicose veins could also be blue or purple, and seem twisted and “raised” towards the pores and skin round them. They’re most typical across the legs, genitals and rectum – and you might really feel strain, discomfort or itchiness. Most of the time, they’ll go away inside a number of months after childbirth.

What fetal growth happens in the third trimester?

The third and closing trimester sees so much of progress for your child. Over the following few weeks, they’re not solely placing on weight – their organs will proceed to mature, their bones will harden, and their hair will start to develop in, together with their fingernails and toenails. They’ll additionally proceed to observe taking breaths and greedy.

How a lot ought to the newborn transfer in the third trimester?

Your child’s progress will depart them with much less area to maneuver round, however you’ll proceed to note their motion – your child could also be particularly lively after meals and in the night. If your child appears quieter than traditional, strive counting their actions. Generally, someplace round 10 actions inside an hour is regular.

But don’t fear if your child doesn’t transfer that a lot – they could simply be sleeping. Try consuming or ingesting one thing, then counting for an additional hour. Call your care supplier if your child doesn’t transfer 10 instances inside two hours, or if you discover a sudden or dramatic change in your child’s actions.

Other incessantly requested questions concerning the third trimester of pregnancy

Is nausea regular through the third trimester?

Many individuals expertise nausea through the third trimester. It might intensify as your rising child competes for area with all the pieces else in your stomach.

How ought to I sleep through the third trimester of pregnancy?

By this time, your child bump will probably be too huge for you to sleep on your abdomen comfortably. It’s vital to keep away from sleeping on your again for prolonged durations of time as a result of the load of the newborn may scale back blood circulation via your stomach.

Sleeping on both facet with pillows between your legs and below your abdomen is commonly a snug answer, and helps promote circulation. But if you get up on your again, it’s normally nothing to fret about. Just be certain to roll again onto your facet.

Is it secure to have intercourse through the third trimester of pregnancy?

As lengthy because it’s comfy and your care supplier hasn’t informed you to keep away from it, it’s secure to have intercourse through the third trimester. Talk to your care supplier if you have any questions or considerations about intercourse throughout this time.

How a lot weight will I achieve through the third trimester?

If you have been at a wholesome weight pre-pregnancy, you’ll probably proceed to achieve weight on the similar price you did throughout your second trimester. Your private beneficial weight achieve will rely upon your beginning weight and the way a lot you’ve gained up so far.

When ought to I cease touring?

If you have a low-risk pregnancy, air journey is normally fantastic till round week 36 of pregnancy. Talk to your care supplier earlier than touring close to the tip of your pregnancy.

How typically will my prenatal appointments be in the third trimester?

The precise frequency of your prenatal appointment schedule will rely upon whether or not your pregnancy is low- or high-risk, and the care system the place you’re getting your care. Generally you can expect to have visits at the very least each 4 weeks till week 36 of pregnancy, then weekly till delivery.

How do I do know once I’m going into labor?

The most typical indicators that it’s time to go to the hospital are common contractions which are 5 minutes aside for at the very least an hour (if it’s your first child) or your water breaks. However, there are a number of different indicators that labor is likely to be beginning, together with decrease stomach ache and shedding your mucus plug.

Third trimester exams

In addition to routine prenatal exams, your third trimester will embrace a screening for Group B Streptococcus (Strep) when you’re nearer to your due date. Group B Strep micro organism are frequent and naturally cycle via the physique, however they’ve the potential to trigger severe infections in newborns. If they’re current, you’ll must go to the hospital as quickly as your water breaks, as a result of that makes it doable for micro organism to enter the uterus, rising the chance of an infection. At the hospital, you’ll begin getting antibiotics, which is able to proceed all through labor.

At round 36 weeks, your physician or midwife may do one other pelvic examination to verify your child’s place. If your child isn’t positioned for a head-first supply, they could advocate strategies for getting the newborn into the right place. If it doesn’t appear like this will probably be doable, your care supplier will focus on the likelihood of a C-section with you.

Get prepared for the massive day and past

The third trimester of pregnancy is an ideal time to start out channeling your pleasure towards preparations. If you haven’t but, begin interested by how you need labor and supply to go. What sort of ambiance do you need? Do you need to strive for an unmedicated delivery or use an epidural? You can reply these questions and others by placing collectively a delivery plan.

It can even be useful to start out studying about postpartum restoration and breastfeeding. There’s so much of recommendation for brand spanking new dad and mom on the market that can assist put together you for the times after supply and your first experiences with your new child.

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