Podcast Transcript: The Third Trimester
During your pregnancy, you may wonder about how your baby is growing and changing. Let’s begin…
The third trimester begins with the seventh month. During this month, your baby’s eyes begin to open and shut. All of the bones have fully developed now, but some are still soft and flexible. Your baby can now see, hear, smell, taste and feel touching. Your baby may be moving more strongly now, and others may notice the movements if they put their hand on your growing belly. By the end of this month, your baby is about 3 and a half pounds. Your body is now preparing to give birth. Be careful how you sleep. Sleeping on your back slows blood flow to the baby. It can also affect the flow of blood to your heart. This will cause your legs and feet to swell and back pain to worsen. You will improve the blood flow to your baby if you sleep on your left side with one leg crossed over the cover. Leg cramps can be very painful and usually happen in the middle of the night. Putting your feet up on pillows and eating calcium rich foods such as milk products, cheese or yogurt can help make the cramps better. Support stockings can help lessen leg cramps and swelling.
In the eighth month of your pregnancy, your baby is growing and getting ready for life outside your body. He or she sleeps most of the time now, but is very active when awake. By the end of this month, your baby weighs 5 to 6 pounds. As the baby grows, you may find yourself making more trips to the bathroom. Up to half of pregnant women get hemorrhoids. They are a group of veins at your anus that can cause itching or be painful, sometimes bleeding after a bowel movement. Blood on the bathroom tissue after a bowel movement can be scary. It does not mean something is wrong with the baby, but be sure you tell your doctor.
We are now in the ninth and last month of pregnancy. Your baby continues to get ready to be born. By the end of the month, he or she is around seven to eight pounds and 19 to 21 inches long. You can help your doctor monitor your baby’s movement by counting kicks. The best time to count is in the evening when the baby is most active - between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. Let your doctor know if your baby kicks less than 10 times in a 2-hour period. As you get closer to your baby’s birth, you may feel more emotional. It is normal to be excited and a little scared. Let your doctor or case manager know if you are having trouble coping because help is available. You may notice a yellowish substance leaking from your breasts. This is called pre- milk. Your breasts are getting ready to make milk for your new baby.
Visit your doctor even if you feel fine. Expect to see your doctor once every 2 weeks during the seventh and eighth months of pregnancy and every week from the beginning of the ninth month until your baby is born. Get your rest, see your doctor, exercise and eat right-that should add up to a healthy pregnancy.