The third trimester is the final stage of pregnancy, from the 7th month until delivery. The fact that your baby has grown in size and is now almost a full grown baby comes with its challenges. Many women, at this stage, start to feel overwhelmed and cannot wait to deliver the baby. You will be expected to increase the frequency with which you attend your prenatal clinic and will have to attend certain classes to prepare you for the birth of your baby. Many women take a leave of absence from their jobs to stay at home at this period. Some of the physical and psychological manifestations of the third trimester during pregnancy include;
Physical aches and pains
These include backaches due to the pressure of the baby’s weight and can be felt on the lower back. There is some downward pressure exerted on the hips, and pelvic region as the baby’s weight bears downwards in readiness for the birth. You should ensure that you seat as much as you can and put your feet up. You can use a heating pad to relieve any back- pain and in severe cases ask your doctor for safe medication to use for your back pain.
Consider getting a support garment to support your belly, a good breast support bra and other items such as maternity hose. Many of the aches experienced are due to bad posture that is occasioned by increased weight from the baby and the growing breasts. Supporting your stomach and breasts appropriately using the right supporting garments will prevent you from experiencing unnecessary aches and help you maintain good posture.
Always sit on a chair capable of giving you proper back support. Also support your stomach and back properly when you are sleeping using pillows. Place a pillow in between your thighs to relieve the strain from your back.
Do back exercises such as pelvic tilts to relieve any back pain. Avoid any unnecessary physical exertions and enlist help from others during difficult tasks, whenever possible.
During the third trimester, your breasts may enlarge to unimaginable sizes. You may notice some leakage of a yellowish fluid known as colostrums as your body prepares for the birth of the baby. Ensure you wear a supportive bra at all times with added padding to take care of any leakage.
It is essential to monitor any discharge during the third trimester. Thick clear discharge, which may at times be blood tinged, is a sign of your cervix preparing for the birth of the baby. If you find that the discharge is excessive, or there is bleeding, report this to your doctor as soon as possible.
Expect to have frequent visits to the bathroom as the baby creates unrelenting pressure on your bladder. You will be prone to urinal leakage so always wear a good panty liner and go to the bathroom a soon as you feel the urge to.
It is common to feel extremely tired during this trimester. Ensure you get the right nutrition and have small meals throughout the day to keep your energy levels up. Exercise is essential at this stage, but you must choose gentle alternatives such as swimming and prenatal yoga and do not exert yourself but choose gentle movements.
Ensure that you are well prepared for your baby’s arrival for your peace of mind. This will help you to have as good a delivery as possible and ensure that you get a healthy child and go through a delivery with the least complications possible.