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What to Expect During Your Third Trimester

As your due date gets closer, the third trimester of pregnancy is often a time of excitement and anticipation. It’s also a time when your body and mind are going through a lot of changes as it continues to adjust to the pregnancy and gets ready for labor and delivery. Here’s what you can expect during the third trimester and how to best prepare yourself for the final weeks of pregnancy.

Physical Changes

Your body continues to change as your baby grows during the third trimester. Your uterus will continue to grow, putting pressure on your diaphragm and other organs as it does so. You may feel more shortness of breath, heartburn, and pain in your abdomen. In preparation for giving birth, your joints and ligaments are also getting looser, and you may feel more backache and pelvic pain. You may also notice that you are gaining weight more quickly during this time as your baby continues to grow. As your baby continues to gain weight, your center of gravity shifts. Make sure to keep your body moving and stay active with light exercise to help reduce these risks. 

Braxton Hicks contractions may also become more frequent as your due date draws nearer. These contractions help your body prepare for labor, but they can be uncomfortable. Make sure to stay hydrated, get plenty of rest, and talk to your doctor if they become too frequent or painful.

Your skin may also start to change during the third trimester. Because of the hormones that are released during pregnancy, the skin of many women gets more flexible. This can lead to stretch marks on your abdomen, breasts, buttocks, and thighs. Make sure to keep your skin moisturized, and consider using a special lotion designed to help prevent stretch marks.

Your baby will also continue to grow and develop during the third trimester. Your baby’s lungs and brain will continue to mature, and you may notice that your baby’s movements become less frequent but more forceful as they become cramped in the womb.

Emotional Changes

The third trimester is a unique and special time for expectant parents. As the due date gets closer, it can be both exciting and scary to think about a new life coming into the world. As the baby grows and your body changes, so too do your emotions.

During the third trimester, pregnant women may experience a range of emotions. As you get closer to the due date, many women may feel anxious, scared, or overwhelmed with all of the changes. This is perfectly normal and is usually a result of the hormonal changes that are happening in your body. It is important to find healthy ways to cope with these feelings, such as talking to friends and family or engaging in calming activities like yoga or meditation.

Many women also experience what is known as “nesting” during the third trimester. This is a natural instinct to organize and prepare for baby’s arrival. It can involve anything from organizing the nursery to stocking up on diapers and baby clothes. This can be a very satisfying experience, as it gives you a sense of control at a time when so much else is unknown.

On the other hand, some women experience a decrease in energy and motivation during the third trimester. This is often a result of fatigue and discomfort as the baby grows. It is important to listen to your body and rest when needed, as it is essential for your health and wellbeing.

No matter what emotions you are feeling during this time, it is important to remember that they are all perfectly normal. You are about to embark on a wonderful new adventure, and it is perfectly natural to experience a wide range of emotions as you approach the big day.

Preparing for Labor and Delivery

During the third trimester, you can also begin getting ready for labor and delivery. If you haven’t already, talk to your doctor about any worries you have and consider enrolling in a childbirth class. Make sure you and your doctor are on the same page regarding your birth plan and that you are familiar with the hospital’s policies and procedures. Most hospitals have a tour of the labor and delivery unit that you can sign up for.

The postpartum period requires some planning as well. Talk to your doctor about any questions or concerns you may have, and make sure you have a support system in place. The people in your support network may include family and friends who can assist with child care, cooking, and running errands.

There are many emotional and physical shifts that occur during the third trimester. It is important to take care of yourself and to talk openly and honestly with your partner, family, and friends. You should also start getting ready for the labor and delivery process and making plans for your postpartum care. The third trimester of pregnancy can be an exciting and enjoyable time with the right amount of planning and support.

Planning a newborn photography session with your local photographer in the Philadelphia area is another task you can check off your list during the third trimester. As a mother of four, I have taken what I have learned as a mother to the studio to give you the very best experience when it comes to capturing some of your most precious moments on camera. Reach out and we can chat about it!

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