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The third trimester- An overview

What is the third trimester?

The 40 weeks of pregnancy are categorized into three trimesters. The weeks from 28 to 40 are grouped as third trimesters.

The third trimester of pregnancy is quite a challenging period both physically and emotionally.

What happened to my body during the third trimester?

The following are some conditions that a pregnant woman experience during the third trimester:

· More aches

· More pain

· Swelling

· Anxiety and stress

Other conditions:

Other conditions associated with the third trimester are as follows:

· An increased baby movement.

· Random tightening of the uterus (Braxton-Hicks contraction).

· More bathroom trips

· Heartburn

· Swollen ankles, fingers, and face

· Hemorrhoids

· Tender breasts

· Difficulty in breathing.

Severe conditions:

Following are the symptoms that occur in the severe case and should never be avoided:

· Painful contractions

· Bleeding at any time

· Lower baby movement

· Extreme swelling

· Rapid weight gain

Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the above-mentioned conditions.

What happens to the fetus during the third trimester?

· Week 32 :

The bones of your baby are fully developed now. The baby can open and close its eyes. The baby can also sense light. The body of your baby is now capable to store minerals such as iron and calcium.

· Week 36:

The head of your baby should be down during this week. The head-down position is essential for normal delivery. Otherwise, your doctor will recommend a cesarean section.

· Week 37:

Your little kiddo is now fully developed into a child. All of his/her organs are also developed and can function on their own. The baby is around 19 to 21 inches long and weighs between 6 and 9 pounds.

How can I stay healthy during the third trimester?

During the third trimester, you can stay healthy by following some do’s and don’t.

Things to do:

· Take prenatal vitamins

· Stay active

· Work out (


· Eat a healthy and balanced diet

· Add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.

· Drink enough amount of water

· Eat enough calories

· Keep your teeth and gums neat and clean

· Get enough sleep

Things to avoid:

· Strenuous exercise or strength training

· Alcohol

· Caffeine

· Smoking

· Illegal drugs

· Raw fish or seafood

· Shark, swordfish, mackerel, or white snapper fish

· Raw sprouts

· Cat litter

· Unpasteurized milk or other dairy products

· Deli meats or hot dogs

· Longer car trips and flights


Some drugs need to be avoided during the third trimester, namely:

· Isotretinoin

· Accutane

· Soriatane

· Thalomid

How can I prepare for birth during the third trimester?

· Attend a prenatal class

· Ask help from friends and family for pet care or babysitting.

· Store frozen foods

· Choose the hospital for delivery and tour that hospital.

· Set up a car seat

· Discuss the birth plan with your doctor

· Apply for maternity leaves

· Design nursery for baby at home

· Stock up all the necessary baby supplies.

· Get your hospital bag ready

· Pack all your documents

· Prepare hospital bag checklist

· Prepare after-delivery bag checklist




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