The third trimester includes the final weeks of pregnancy (weeks 28 to 40) and ends with the birth of a child.

  Third Trimester

Changes in the Pregnant Mother Many of the symptoms from the second trimester continue, with constipation and heartburn increasing in frequency. Backaches, leg cramps, increases in varicose veins, hemorrhoids, sleep problems, shortness of breath, and Braxton-Hicks contractions often occur. At first these contractions are scattered and relatively painless (the uterus hardens for a moment and then returns to normal). In the 8th and 9th months, the Braxton-Hicks contractions become stronger. A thin, yel­lowish liquid called colostrum (kuh-LAHS-trum) may be secreted from the nipples as the breasts prepare to produce milk for breast-feeding. Toward the end of the third trimester, many women feel an increase in apprehension about labor and delivery; im­patience and restlessness are common.

 

Braxton-Hicks contractions

Intermittent contractions of the uterus after the third month of pregnancy.

 

Third Trimester

Third Trimester