Pregnancy Third Trimester

Pregnancy: Third Trimester

Information on what you can expect during the last 3 months of your pregnancy.

Pregnancy Third Trimester

Third Trimester: An Overview

Many of the pains and uncomfortable symptoms you had in your second trimester will continue into this trimester.  As your body prepares for birth, the baby moves down lower in your abdomen.

The following aches and pains often appear or increase during the third trimester:

Every healthy woman with a normal pregnancy will continue to gain weight in the 3rd trimester.  The average weight gain is about 3-4 pounds per month during the third trimester. By the end of your pregnancy you should have gained, on average, about 25-30 pounds.  The amount of weight you should gain will be determined in consultation with your health care provider. Visit the link Weight Gain for additional information.

Continue seeing your doctor or midwife regularly. In the last trimester of pregnancy, your health care provider will suggest you see them more frequently than you did during the first or second trimesters. From weeks 30-38 of the pregnancy most doctors and midwives recommend an appointment every 1-2 weeks. After 38 weeks, your health care provider will typically see you every week until labor and delivery begin.  

You should make sure you and your health care provider discuss any questions concerns you have about labor and delivery about inducing labor, about birth options, as well as issues regarding cesarean sections (c-sections) and pain relief.

Third Trimester: Week-by-Week

The following has been adapted from the Mayo Clinic website.

Week 28: Baby's eyes open

Your baby is about 15 inches long and weighs about 2 to 3 pounds.  Your baby's eyes are beginning to open and close. Your baby is taking 20-30 minute naps.

Week 29: Movement is more forceful

Your baby's bones are fully developed and the baby begins storing iron, calcium and phosphorus.  The baby's movements become more frequent and stronger.

Week 30: Baby increases in weight

Your baby weighs about 3 pounds and will gain about 1/2 pound a week until week 37.  If your baby gets the hiccups you may feel slight twitches or spasms in your uterus.

Week 31: Reproductive development continues

If your baby is a boy, the testicles are moving from their location near the kidneys through the groin on their way into the scrotum. Your baby's lungs continue to develop.

Week 32: Downy hair falls off

Your baby is between 15-17 inches long and weighs about 4 to 5 pounds. The downy hair (called lanugo) that has covered your baby's skin for the past few months begins falling off.

Week 33: Baby detects light

Your baby's pupils now constrict, dilate and detect light. Your baby continues to gain about 1/2 pound a week and the lungs are more completely developed.

Week 34: Protective coating gets thicker

The pasty white coating (called vernix) that protects your baby's skin thickens.

Week 35: Rapid growth continues

Your baby continues to gain weight and store fat.

Week 36: Baby can suck

Your baby is 16-19 inches long and weighs about 6 to 7 pounds. Your baby's face has rounded out with baby fat.  In preparation for birth your baby drops lower into a birth position.

Week 37: Baby is full-term

By the end of this week, your baby will be considered full-term. As fat continues to accumulate, your baby's body will slowly become rounder.

Week 38: Organ function continues to improve

Your baby weighs approximately 7 pounds and is ready for birth.

Week 39: Placenta provides antibodies

The placenta continues to supply your baby with antibodies that will help fight infection the first six months after birth.

Week 40: Your due date arrives

On average, your baby may be 19-21 inches long and weigh 7-8 pounds with boys usually weighing a little more than girls.

Additional Information

Click on the highlighted links in this paragraph for more information about the 1st trimester and the 2nd trimester.

Third Trimester: Women's Health

Help For Pregnant Woman and Birth Mothers By State


Our Adoption Agency is licensed in multiple states and is able to help a birth mother and birth father in all 50 states and in foreign countries. We are different from county child adoption programs and have worked with birth parents from all over the world and our overall satisfaction rating by birth parents has been excellent.



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