The third trimester is the period which is defined as the 28th week of pregnancy until the delivery of the baby. It can be considered as the home stretch of the whole pregnancy process. According to medical experts, it is often considered as the most challenging period. During this period, the baby is still continually growing until it reaches the right weight and size. This is the main reason why this period can be so tiring and uncomfortable.
In addition to the physical changes the mother is experiencing, it can also be a highly emotional time. It is best to be knowledgeable of the symptoms during the third trimester. The symptoms include the following:
- Breast growth– The pregnant woman can expect around 2 pounds of additional breasts tissues. In addition to this, a yellowish fluid, called colostrums, can be expected.
- Backache– Because of weight gain, the woman can experience backache during this period. Discomforts in the hips and pelvis may also be expected. Good posture may help combat backache. Heating pad may also be used to relieve pain in the back.
- Braxton Hicks contractions– Mild contractions are common during the third trimester. This is a way of the uterus to get ready for the actual delivery. It is best to know how to distinguish true contractions from the milder ones.
- Shortness of breath– Because of the crowding of the lungs due to the growing uterus, pregnant woman may still experience shortness of breath just like during the second trimester. Elevating the upper part of the body during sleep may help decrease breathlessness.
- Vaginal discharge– This is normal during this period. If the leaking liquid is amniotic fluid, the woman should contact her health care provider right away.
The baby’s delivery is the culmination of the pregnancy experience. It is always important to know what to expect before this happens. The third trimester may be an emotionally charged process for women. Enough knowledge and strong support system are both important for this period to become successful. For pregnant women, it is important to always keep a positive attitude despite of the changes the experience may bring.