Pregnancy third trimester belly

Belly Casting

Are you looking for a fun way to capture the shape of your pregnant body? While taking photos or videos will do the trick… consider belly casting. It is truly a unique and easy way to commemorate the miracle of life. A 3D belly cast is made from plaster and shows off an expecting mom’s beautiful form. Belly casting can be done in the privacy of your own home, in as little as 30 minutes. Try it out and create a lasting memory of the special nine months you shared with your growing baby!

Most women choose to create a belly cast 3-4 weeks before their due date, but you can also make several casts to capture the miraculous changes in your body throughout your pregnancy. Your significant other may want to participate as well and this is a great bonding opportunity. Remember, a photo will only capture a flat 2-dimensional image, while a belly cast will capture your transformation in a full 3 dimensions.

How To Make a Pregnancy Cast This project should take you about an hour. You can either purchase a pregnancy belly cast kit or make your own. If you choose to do it yourself, here is a list of materials needed:

* Plaster of Paris * Scissors * A bowl of water * Vaseline * A blow dryer

Start by removing your shirt and exposing your belly. Sit in a comfy chair. Do not lay down, because your belly and breasts will flatten out. Tuck a towel in the waist of your pants. Rub Vaseline all around the belly in a thin layer. Cut strips of the plaster about a foot long each. Fill a bowl with water. Take a strip of the plaster and dip into the water for about 15 seconds. Apply smoothly along your belly. Continue to take the wet strips and place them around your belly until a thick enough layer has formed. Smooth the strips with wet hands. Tip: Make thicker layers around the outside of the dome so that it can remain sturdy.

After this part is completed, take your blow dryer and dry the cast completely. Test it out by knocking on the cast to see if it’s hard. When it is ready, peel off the skin carefully. Wipe off any excess Vaseline. If you decide to decorate your belly cast, wait a couple hours to be sure it’s really set.

Belly Cast Decorating Once you have made your pregnancy belly cast- you can keep it in its original form or jazz it up a bit! Paint it, apply sequins, glitter, beads, tile or any other decorations you’d like. You can even glaze it and use it as a fruit bowl! Many expecting mothers hang it on the wall in the baby’s nursery. Another fun idea: wait until your little bundle of joy is born and apply paint to your baby’s hands and feet. Then put the prints on the cast. It is truly amazing to see the change in size of a little hand or foot by comparing them to the cast as they grow. Your imagination has no limit. Enjoy your keepsake!

Your Guide to the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

It may feel as if there’s no way your belly can get any bigger, but there’s no doubt about it — it will get bigger over the course of the third trimester of pregnancy. A lot bigger. Here’s what to expect from your body and your rapidly-maturing baby in these final few weeks.

When Does the Third Trimester Start?

The third trimester begins in week 28 of pregnancy and lasts until you give birth, which may be around week 40 of pregnancy. In other words, your third trimester lasts from month 7 through month 9 of pregnancy. It’s likely, however, that labor will start a couple of weeks earlier or later — in fact, at least 50 percent of all babies are latecomers. If you do make it to (or past) week 40, you can try a few tricks to naturally induce labor on your own. But once you reach week 42 of pregnancy, you’ll be officially considered overdue, at which point your doctor will induce labor if it doesn’t begin on its own.

In the meantime, hang in there! You’re almost to the finish line.

Baby’s Growth During the Third Trimester

Your little one will get a whole lot larger in the third trimester, growing from about 2 1/2 pounds and 16 inches long in week 28 of pregnancy to between 6 and 9 pounds and 19 to 22 inches long in week 40. Indeed, your baby is growing fast — so don’t be surprised if his increase in size along with a decrease in living space leads to some serious kicks and pokes in your gut.

Here are a few of the highlights happening in your third trimester of pregnancy:

  • Bones: As your baby transforms cartilage to bone in months 7 and 8, he’ll be getting all of her calcium from you — so be sure to eat plenty of calcium-rich foods.
  • Hair, skin and nails: By week 32 of pregnancy, baby’s formerly see-through skin will become opaque. In week 36, fat continues to accumulate as your baby sheds his vernix (the waxy substance that protects his skin from your amniotic fluid) and lanugo (the hairy coat that keeps him warm in there).
  • Digestive system: In the final weeks of pregnancy, meconium — or baby’s first poop, consisting mostly of blood cells, vernix and lanugo — starts to build up in baby’s intestines.
  • Five Senses: Your baby’s touch receptors will be fully developed around week 29 or week 30. By week 31 of pregnancy, your baby will get signals from all five senses, perceiving light and dark, tasting what you eat, and listening to the sound of your voice.
  • Brain: In the third trimester your baby’s brain will grow faster than ever, test-driving some nifty skills including blinking, dreaming and regulating his own body temperature.

Around week 34 of pregnancy, baby’s body turns southward, settling into a heads-down, bottom-up position — unless, of course, your baby remains stubbornly in the breech position (in which case your doctor will likely attempt to manually turn baby around week 37).

Changes in Your Body

With that busy baby inside your belly, you’re probably feeling lots of fetal activity. You may also be experiencing changes in your body as your bump gets bigger than ever, including:

  • Abdominal achiness: As your round ligaments (which support your lower abdomen) stretch to accommodate your growing bump, you may feel crampy or sharp pain. There’s not much you can do other than take it easy.
  • Fatigue: You’ll feel more zapped this trimester because of the demands pregnancy is putting on your body, so eat well and frequently, stay active and solve pregnancy sleep problems.
  • Heartburn: In the last few weeks of pregnancy, your uterus will push your stomach and its contents upward, causing that persistent burn. If it’s really bothering you, talk to your doctor about proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) or H2 blockers, which are safe to use during pregnancy.
  • Braxton Hicks contractions: Your body’s way of preparing for labor, you’ll start to feel these irregular practice contractions now until real labor starts.
  • Varicose veins: You may notice these bulging veins (including hemorrhoids, which are actually a type of varicose vein) in your lower body due to all of the extra blood you’re pumping. The good news: If you didn’t have them before pregnancy, they’ll likely disappear after you deliver.
  • Stretch marks: These tiny tears, which appear in skin that’s being stretched to the limit during pregnancy, are usually a result of genetics. Moisturize to minimize their appearance.
  • Backache: As the pregnancy hormone relaxin loosens your joints and your growing belly pulls your center of gravity forward, you may start to have an achy back — another reason to put your feet up, literally. (Sharp, shooting pain from your back down your legs, on the other hand, may be a sign of sciatica.)
  • Crazy dreams: Your dreams may be more vivid than ever as you near your due date, likely due in part to pregnancy hormones. They’re totally normal — so take them with a grain of salt and have fun swapping stories with a loved one.
  • Clumsiness: Your hormones are on overdrive, your belly is throwing you off balance and you’re more forgetful than ever. You’re in good (pregnant) company — so just try to be careful and have a sense of humor about it!
  • Lack of bladder control: You sneeze = you pee. Indeed, all that extra weight on your pelvic floor makes it harder to stay dry. To the rescue: Your daily Kegels regimen.
  • Leaky breasts: Your body’s warming up to feed your baby.

With all of these pregnancy symptoms and more weighing on you, just try to keep your eye on the prize: your beautiful baby, who you’ll meet in just a few weeks!

Consider This: Belly Oil

Belly oils are specifically created to moisturize the sensitive skin around your stomach. During pregnancy, the skin around your bump grows faster than any other skin on your body, which can result in stretch marks. Belly oils and other stretch mark creams keep it extra-moisturized, which keeps the tearing that causes stretch marks to a minimum.

Belli Elasticity Belly Oil

Why We Love It: The combination of lavender oil and cocoa butter makes this the perfect addition to your bedtime routine. The cocoa butter soothes itchy skin and keeps your skin moisturized, while the soothing lavender scent will help you relax before you turn in for the night.

What Moms Are Saying: “This oil keeps skin soft, glowing and stretch-mark free. It’s not that oily for an oil and hasn’t stained any of my clothes, even right after use. Furthermore, the ingredients are all safe for baby so moms can indulge and preserve their skin without fear of harming their developing little one. Haven’t found anything nearly as effective for the safety, and price!”

Symptoms to Have Checked Out

As D-day approaches, and you may experience false labor symptoms. A few of the real signs of labor to watch out for include:

  • Lightening: By about week 36, you may find yourself waddling as your baby drops in your pelvis.
  • Bloody show: This stringy mucus tinged pink or brown with blood is a sure sign labor is well on its way. You also may or may not notice the discharge of your mucous plug (which seals off your uterus from the outside world).
  • Labor contractions: Compared to Braxton Hicks contractions, these intensify, rather than diminish, the more you move around.
  • Yourwater breaking: This may not even happen, however, until you’re already at the hospital.

Your doctor will likely tell you when it’s time to call or head to the hospital — likely around the time active labor starts. Congrats! Baby is on the way.

If at any point, however, you experience heavy vaginal bleeding, a fever over 101.5 F, severe lower abdominal pain, sudden weight gain, signs of preterm labor or any other signs that warrant a call to your doctor, don’t hesitate to reach out — you’re always better trusting your instincts and staying on the safe side when you’re expecting.

Third Trimester To-Dos

  • Keep track of fetal movement. From about week 28 on, you’ll want to count baby’s kicks regularly and note any changes in activity, especially during month 9.
  • Watch your weight. Your pregnancy weight gain will pick up speed at the beginning of the third trimester and taper down as your due date nears (you may even lose a pound or two). If you’re not gaining enough (or if you’ve gained too much), work with your doctor to adjust your pregnancy diet to get back on track.
  • Keep moving! As long as you have your practitioner’s OK and you follow a few fitness safety precautions, it’s safe to continue pregnancy-safe exercises up until your due date.
  • Schedule your third trimester checkups. Expect tests for glucose levels, anemia and group B strep in months 7 and 8. In month 9, your practitioner will perform an internal examination of your cervix to see if effacement and dilation (the thinning and opening of your cervix) have begun. If you’re classified as “high-risk,” your doctor may also schedule a biophysical profile or nonstress test in the last few weeks just to be sure everything is proceeding as expected.
  • Take a hospital tour. If you haven’t already, month 7 is a great time to take a tour of the hospital or birthing center where you plan to give birth.
  • Choose your baby’s pediatrician.Interview a few candidates with a list of questions around week 32 and pick your favorite.
  • Buy baby gear. Make sure you have the baby gear essentials — especially a crib, stroller, car seat (which you’ll need to bring your baby home from the hospital), changing table and baby monitor. On that note, take your car seat in to be professionally installed.
  • Get educated. In addition to a childbirth class — which will help you to feel more prepared for the entire birth process — you may also want to consider classes on infant CPR and baby care.
  • Prepare to breastfeed. Read more about why and how to breastfeed before baby arrives, and possibly even take a breastfeeding class. And don’t hesitate to ask your doula or a lactation consultant for help later if you need it.
  • Learn about the stages of labor. Get prepared for baby’s birthday by learning what to expect during early, active and transitional labor as well as pushing baby out and delivering the placenta.
  • Consider how you’d like to manage labor pain. Want an epidural or other medication to manage labor pain? Thinking about having a natural birth, possibly in a birthing tub? Now’s the time to discuss your options with your practitioner.
  • Check your birth plan. From whether or not you want an epidural to when and who cuts baby’s umbilical cord, make or finalize your birth plan. (Just remember, when it comes time to push baby out, not everything always goes exactly as planned — the important part is keeping you and your baby safe and healthy!)
  • Set up your nursery. Get all of the essentials you’ll need for your nursery. And don’t forget baby basics like bottles, baby clothes, diapers, wipes, pacifiers and formula (if you’re not planning to breastfeed).
  • Commemorate your baby bump: Arrange a professional baby bump photo shoot or take some beautiful bump shots of your own — you can hang them in the nursery or add to your baby’s photo album later.
  • Stock your fridge. You may want to whip up a few meals to keep in your freezer for the first few weeks, when you’ll be busy with a new baby and recovering from birth.
  • Plan financially. Consider the costs of having a baby and start following a new family budget accordingly.
  • Pack your hospital bag. Pack light — but don’t forget a few comforts from home that you’ll want to have with you at the hospital.
  • Arrange for cord blood banking. If you’re considering cord blood banking — public or private — be sure your practitioner is aware of your plans, and don’t forget to pack any cord blood kit the bank sends you in your hospital bag.
  • Learn what happens after birth. Read up on what happens in the first 24 hours after birth as your body repairs and you begin to adjust to your new role.
  • Prepare for baby’s first year. Learn more about all the exciting milestones that happen in baby’s first year of life — there’s so much to look forward to!

Getting excited? You should be — it won’t be long now until you meet your baby!

Just so you know, What to Expect may earn commissions from the shopping links included on this page.

From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting . Health information on this site is based on peer-reviewed medical journals and highly respected health organizations and institutions including ACOG (American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists), CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics), as well as the What to Expect books by Heidi Murkoff.

Third Trimester Pregnancy Exercises ★ Beautiful Belly & Healthy Pregnancy Workout

To begin with take a deep squat pose with legs wide apart and your both hands folded in front of your chest.

In this pose, your both elbows should rest on your respective knee caps and palms facing and touching each other.

Take 5 deep breaths when you are in this deep squat pose.

Perform a deep squat and release all your energy through pelvis with your eyes closed.

Squats exercise is great for your glutes and legs.

Stand shoulder width apart.

Push your lower rear end back and keep your abdominal tight and in, as you lower your body.

Bring your hands forward in front of the chest with shoulder width apart as you lower your body. Be extremely cautious that your knees do not pass your toes.

Repeat this squat exercise for 20 times at least.

This exercise prepares you for labor and delivery and is good for your lower body.

To begin with stand legs more wide apart than your shoulders with both your hands on their respective thighs with legs pointing outwards.

Now, lower your upper body and start doing squats.

Be attentive to keep knees in the 90 degrees angle at the lowest point of your squat.

Repeat this squat exercise at least 10 times.

Sit in a relaxed position with the back as tall as possible while putting the base of together facing each other, so that your legs bent at the knees.

This pose will help you open hips and pelvis, which is very important childbirth.

Lean backward and put your both hands at the back with fingers pointing to the sides and do focus on releasing energy through your pelvis.

You can also bend forward, but not too far because of your stomach size. Go back as far as possible and return to initial position with your back as tall as possible.

Repeat this for at least 10 times.

Sit with your legs wide apart as much as possible on the ground without overstressing or overstretching with your palms on the knee caps.

It is very important yoga exercise for childbirth as it helps opening woman’s hips and pelvis. Take a few breaths to release your inner thigh muscles and to feel more comfortable and come in a forward bent position till you are comfortable.

Stretch to your right side as much as possible comfortably and stay in this pose for a few seconds.

Repeat the same on left side and do all this while you breathe as usual for both sides.

Repeat this exercise for at least 10 times.

Sit relaxed with your left hand on the right knee and vice versa, now breathe in to raise up your chest and upper back and exhale as you twist to the side.

Come back to the initial position and repeat this on the other side. Repeat this for 10 times.

To do this exercise, sit up straight and bend your knees and take your hands to the outside of the knees.

Take a deep breath through your nose and round your spine and tighten abdominal muscles as you exhale.

Hold for 3 seconds in this position and release abdominal muscles.

As you come up straight and pull your shoulders back inhale and repeat.

To begin with, lie down on your side with your fore arm resting on the ground and palm facing the ground bending at the elbow and the other hand also on the ground for support.

Now raise your leg up and down as much as possible comfortably.

This is a great exercise for strengthening your glutes and legs.

Be careful that your legs are straight while moving up and down.

Place your arms under your shoulders directly and put your weight on knees.

Now, tighten up your abdomen and draw belly button away from the exercise mat and towards your spine.

The purpose of this exercise is to draw away abdomen from the mat and toward the spine.

Do focus on breathing while doing this.

This is a very good exercise for lower back problems or abdominal region.

Take a deep breath and as you exhale extend your left arm and your right leg as far as you can. Keep your hips square and keep your abdominal region tight.

You can stay in this pose for up to 15 seconds and breathe freely.

Do consult your physician before starting any of the above exercises for your medical condition.

Third Trimester of Pregnancy

It’s your seventh month; you are rounding the last bend! By the end of these next 3 months, you’ll be holding your sweet babe in your arms.

Between now and then, you and your baby will grow and grow and grow! One of his main objectives during this last bit of time in your womb is to put on extra body fat to help regulate his temperature after birth. Your baby will gain 4-7 pounds this third trimester (he is about 2 pounds on your twenty-eighth week), most of it during his last 7 weeks, and all of his growth will show in your big, beautiful belly! As your baby grows, his skeleton is also growing and hardening. In order to complete this work, your baby will soak up around 250mg of calcium from you each day!

As your pregnancy progresses, you may notice the return of fatigue. Your body is working very hard to accommodate its extra little resident, and on top of this, it does become harder to get a good night’s rest. Between the size of your belly and the seemingly constant need to urinate, waking in the night becomes the norm. This is good preparation, though, for once your baby arrives!

By the time you reach 35 weeks or so, you will likely notice a difference in your baby’s movements. This is because he is taking up so much room in your uterus that he no longer has the space to do the back flips and somersaults he has been able to enjoy! However, the number of kicks you feel should stay about the same.

Your baby will be considered full term if he is born anywhere between your thirty-seventh and forty-second week of pregnancy. At this point, it is all a waiting game. Although there are signs for which your care provider can be watching, to show that you are progressing toward labor, there is, of course, no way to guarantee when you’ll have your baby. During this time, your baby is finishing up any growing and weight gain needed, as well as getting his respiratory system ready for that first breath of air.

While it is hard to wait these last few weeks for your baby, you can take this time to enjoy the last bit of one-on-one time you’ll have with your partner and finish any needed preparations. Soon-to-be-siblings may need a bit of extra attention during this time, too. They, too, are getting ready for this big transition and may need a bit of additional support. Other preparations you can make are freezing meals for the first few weeks after the baby is born, making sure your baby’s clothes and blankets are washed and ready, and finalizing your birth plan.

Before you know it, you won’t be pregnant anymore (really, you won’t!), and your baby will actually be here! It is hard to believe, but it happens every time.

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