If you are in your third trimester, you are down to the homestretch and heading for the finish line. You are probably excited, nervous, happy, anxious and very tired. If you are anything like me, you are starting to pray that if the baby could be born healthy, it would be born already. You are uncomfortable. Your back may hurt. You feel like you have to urinate all the time because the weight of the baby is pressing on your bladder. One thing that the books on pregnancy don’t tell you is that sometimes the baby will press on the nerve that leads to your vagina and it will feel like it has fallen to sleep (much like your arm if you lay on it too long). What a weird feeling that is. Your breasts may begin to leak. This is natural. If this happens, there are pads that you can insert into your bra that will absorb the colostrum.
As you get nearer your due date, you may find it difficult to sleep. Your new figure makes it hard to get comfortable. I found that lying on my side cuddling a body pillow helps.
Whether or not to continue with a sexual relationship and what positions are safe may be on your mind. These questions are best left up to your doctor. For most women, sexual intercourse is perfectly safe but for some it may be a problem.
Whether or not you want to have sex may be a different question altogether. For me sexual intercourse became quite uncomfortable. This wasn’t only because of my changing body size and form; it was also because my body had stopped producing the lubrication necessary to make having sex comfortable. There are products on the market that can help with this problem but again you should discuss using them with your doctor.
If your doctor says that it is ok, taking walks during your last trimester is a great way to get exercise. I found that walking during pregnancy helped when I went to deliver my baby. Actually, walking while you are in labor can help speed up the process a little bit. It is uncomfortable and for some it may not be recommended but, it really does work.
Somehow a round, very pregnant belly seems to be a magnet for attracting both people who want to touch your stomach and people who want to share their “horror” stories of giving birth. Most people wouldn’t think about asking a stranger if they could touch a part of their anatomy but somehow a pregnant belly changes the rules. If you are uncomfortable with strangers, family or friends touching your belly, politely ask them not to do it. There are even some pregnancy shirts out there that display this message for you.
As for the horror stories, do your best to ignore them. The women who tell you their “war” stories mean well but they are probably exaggerating without knowing they are doing so. The mind rearranges memories and so their ability to recall the actual event may be hindered. Every pregnancy is different. Most labor and deliveries proceed normally without complications. As for the pain, tolerance for pain is also an individual thing. Labor does hurt. For me it felt like I was just having some bad menstrual cramps. For my sister-in-law, her labor went so quick she swore that she didn’t feel any pain at all. Remember, if you have decided to have a natural birth and the pain is too much, you can always ask for some help.
The best way to prepare for labor, whether you decide on a natural birth or a birth with assistance, is to take child-birthing classes with your partner. These not only introduce breathing exercises that can help reduce the pain associated with labor; they also teach you what to expect during the labor process.
During the third trimester, you should make preparations for the “big day”. You should be pre-registered with the hospital where are going to deliver your baby. You should prepare a bag to take with you. In the bag, you should place an outfit for you and your baby to come home in, and personal grooming items. I would recommend that you not bring your own nightgown or bathrobe. It is better to use the gowns that the hospital provide you. After you deliver your baby, you will bleed as much as you do during a heavy period and it can get a little messy. You should also have a car seat for the baby. The hospitals where I live will not let the baby go home without one.
The third trimester means that baby is almost here. Yeah! The best advice that I, as a mother of 8, can offer you is to rely on your doctor, not your friends, your family or articles on the internet for information about your health and that of your soon-to-be- born child.
(Some information used in this article was verified at http://www.babycenter.com/pregnancy-fetal-development-index)