In the third trimester a baby bump is obvious enough that you could find yourself getting some special attention from strangers and a slew of questions about your child. ManyWeeksPregnant explains that even if you do start to feel like a broken record, try to be friendly because “there’s something about a pregnant woman that warms people’s hearts”.
There’s good reason to be so excited though! Your body is working hard to make sure the baby inside is developed enough to be delivered in the next twelve weeks. Lengthwise most of the growing is done, but now is the baby’s bulk-up time! Being around sixteen inches and three pounds makes for a very skinny newborn, so these last weeks will be spent giving your baby some ‘baby weight’. The pounds can double, or even triple, in the time between now and birth. Brain and bone development are progressing very quickly so taking your vitamins and eating lots of calcium is especially important (the fetus absorbs about 250 mg each day!). Increased consumption of vitamin C, protein, and folic acid are beneficial to aiding in healthy advancement.
At twenty-nine weeks into your pregnancy, you’ll really start to feel what it truly means to be carrying. This point in your third trimester all the symptoms you’re already acquainted with are giving you trouble day and night! Swelling, a big appetite, food cravings, varicose veins, cramps, and numerous others are common ailments that are annoying but still bearable. Other truly undesirable symptoms include hemorrhoids and greater chance of a urinary tract infection. As gross and uncomfortable as these abnormalities are, they aren’t cause for concern either. However, if ignored both can lead to secondary infections and turn discomfort into severe consequences. Proper medicines and creams can keep your body happy and healthy, but always check packaging information and ask your doctor if some medications seem suspicious.
This late into your pregnancy work can become more of a hassle than a distraction, depending on what you do. You may already be on maternity leave if your work is physically taxing or dangerous in general, but even more tame jobs that have simple make your belly seem like a hazard have reason to let you get some bed rest. Many women choose to keep working practically until they’re in labor and save maternity leave for after the baby is born. However, don’t feel guilty about taking time off, especially if you’ve had even minor complications in earlier weeks.
Whether you’re already on maternity leave or not, ‘bed rest’ isn’t just about sleeping all day and getting up for snacks! Light exercises are advised by many for women in their third trimester. Stretching, walking, mild yoga, and swimming are great ways to keep you and your child active and healthy. As you’ll come to find in these final weeks, finding the perfect balance of exercise, rest, and work will be the end goal for mommy and baby.