As you move into the third trimester of your pregnancy, you are probably more ready than ever to meet your baby – things can start to get quite uncomfortable at this point!
Your due date is getting closer by the day and you might be starting to get things prepared at home for when you finally bring your little guy or girl home.
The third trimester is both exciting and exhausting! Here are our tips for making the most of the final weeks of pregnancy.
Feeling your baby move in your tummy is, without a doubt, one of the best parts of pregnancy. In your second trimester, these kicks probably felt like soft, tiny flutters – by your third trimester they are something else, and you will be able to tell which baby body part is digging into your ribs. You might even experience the delightful feeling of being punched in the cervix. Your Braxton Hicks contractions become stronger and more frequent as your pregnancy progresses, though some women don’t experience any at all – everyone is different! Though the third trimester can be downright uncomfortable, feeling your baby’s movements can make you feel more connected to them, and some women even say they miss these little kicks and jabs once their baby is born.
Other aches and pains
By the third trimester, the baby has literally taken over your body. As he or she gets bigger, your stomach has less room in your body and you might find you start to suffer from indigestion and heartburn (if you haven’t already). Even though you may be ravenously hungry, your stomach capacity won’t be quite the same, so it is best to eat frequent, small meals to ensure you’re getting adequate nutrition. We send out yummy, easy recipes to our Yoga Subscribers so if you haven’t already,be sure to join us here. As baby descends further down your pelvis, you might also start to feel quite “heavy” down there – and it can be quite painful if baby decides to set up shop against a nerve, so have a chat to your midwife or doctor to see if they can recommend anything to assist with the pain. Wearing comfy clothing like our maternity and breastfeedingloungewearand continuing with some gentle exercise if you can will help you keeping comfortable. Our free Yoga Recordings are great in the third trimester, you might love our ‘Happy Feet’ session! But also make sure you take the time to rest and put your feet up!
Despite the fact that you’ll well and truly have developed the pregnancy waddle by the end of your third trimester, many women still manage to waddle their way into the “nesting” phase of pregnancy. On your first day of maternity leave, rather than deciding to lounge around in bed for a while longer, you might be overcome with a sudden, strong urge to organise your Tupperware drawer or Marie Kondo your linen cupboard – this is classic nesting! Other women decide to start preparing and freezing meals to survive the hectic newborn days. Old wive’s tale or not, it’s also practical, so make the most of these sporadic bursts of energy while you can – you’ll be thankful when you’re home from the hospital and you have a perfectly organised pantry.
Pack your bags
With preparations at home well underway, it’s a good time to get your bag packed for the hospital or birthing centre, so you’re not scrambling for things when the big day comes (and remember, that day could come sooner than you think! It did for me -check out my story here). There is a lot of information online regarding what to pack for baby, but don’t forget to get yourself sorted too. I’ve also pulled together ahospital bag checklist to help!
You’ll want some easy-accessbreastfeeding pyjamas, and if the weather is chilly, a dressing gown or robe will keep you snug for nighttime feeds. Bring at least a fewbreastfeeding tops, so that you can feel decent for any visitors you might have. Pack snacks for you and your partner, because breastfeeding hunger is real and you need to get those calories in, so this will ensure you’ve got something handy when you’re suddenly starving at 3am.
It’s also a good idea to pack some maternity pads – the hospital or birthing centre will most likely have some, but you won’t want to be without these, just in case. You could also think about getting nipple cream andpads (for sore, leaky boobs).
I often get asked if it’s necessary to have a breast pump ready to go with your hospital bag. While hopefully things go to plan, you never know whether you might encounter any feeding issues in the early days. Having your own pump, that you are familiar with and that you can trust will be comfortable, can make the experience a lot less stressful if you find yourself having to express straight away. OurMilkbar Advanced Flow Breast Pump mimics the way baby’s tongue moves as it feeds, so is an ideal first breast pump to supplement or assist as you establish breastfeeding, if you choose to feed this way.
Finally, get excited! You’re able to embark on the most beautiful, educational, life-changing and exciting journey - motherhood! I’d love to know what else mums would add to this list; leave a comment below to share something you think might help a mum-to-be.