If you’re pregnant and are now entering or are well into the third trimester, maybe some of the first-trimester blues are coming back: you might be feeling more tired now, you might always need to catch your breath, and you’ve found new parts of your body that constantly hurts (hip pain or lower back pain is common). Here’s a list of what not to do in your third trimester of pregnancy.
Start A New Workout Routine
You might be feeling short of breath even from just walking short distances, heck, you might be feeling short of breath even while just sitting down. This, plus the unstoppable weight gain is enough to make you think that you should start a rigourous work out routine in order to get you back to shape again.
Well I’m here to tell you to not do it! Don’t even think about it! The shortness of breath is completely normal as baby is growing inside of you, which means your organs have less room, which means your lungs are squished, causing the shortness of breath. And the weight gain? completely normal! Baby is growing, what did you expect?
Long Trips (And Travelling By Plane)
When doing research for this topic, I really couldn’t find a source that explicitly says that going on long trips have any adverse effects. However, I’m adding this to the list of things not to do in your third trimester of pregnancy because think about it: if anything were to happen (God forbid), such as bleeding, preterm labour, contractions, or any of that sort, wouldn’t you want to be in your comfort zone, with your doctor just a phone call away? As we know, pregnancy can bring about a bunch of different ball curves, so if at all possible, it’s best to stay local and avoid long trips, especially if you are nearing your due date.
Travelling by plane is a different story, however. According to the Government of Canada, most airlines restrict air travel in late pregnancy due to increased risk of blood clot. If you do have to travel, you may need a written permission from your doctor.
Ok before you say anything, I don’t mean heavy lifting as in lifting barbells and going to your HIIT class. Unless you were a body builder before getting pregnant, you shouldn’t even be thinking of lifting weights during this time! Also side note: even if you were a body builder before getting pregnant, please refrain from lifting weights in your third trimester!
No, I am talking about lifting heavy items/furniture now that you are in your third trimester. It may be tempting, because this is typically the time when your nesting instincts come in. You might be purchasing new furniture for your nursery, so yes, the temptation to move heavy furniture is very real. However, because of your pregnant belly, your centre of gravity will change. This means it will be easier to fall or become injured while lifting heavy items. In addition, some sources say being involved in strenuous activities during the third trimester could induce preterm labour.
There are a lot of fear mongering on google, if you search hard enough. On the flip side, there’s a lot of articles condoning everything you want to do, while pregnant, even thought they may not necessarily be safe. So, if you are in doubt, and especially during your third trimester, it’s best to consult a reputable pregnancy book for the information you are looking for.
Now that we are getting into the cooler months of the year, you may be tempted to jump into a hot bath, jacuzzi, or a sauna. However, before you light up those candles and run yourself a hot bath, keep reading.
According to WebMD, hot baths are not safe for pregnancy as it increases your body’s internal temperature, which can lead to a higher risk of birth defects for baby.
What to do instead: run a bath but only up to 100 degrees Fahrenheight, or 37.2 degrees Celsius. Make sure you have a thermometer handy to make sure that your bath water does not go over this temperature.
Eating For Two
Honestly, the cravings probably won’t stop, and you will still constantly be hungry. You may even find yourself wanting to scarf down a whole plate of your favourite meal. However, I would strongly suggest that you refrain yourself from eating too much in one seating, especially in your third trimester. This is because you are more prone to heartburn in the third trimester, as baby is growing and squishing your organs.
Sleeping On Your Back
Sleeping can be such an ordeal when you’re in your third trimester. You may have been sleeping on your side as prescribed, but sometimes, sleeping on your side hurts your hips especially if that’s the only position you’re in the whole night, every night. It might be tempting to sleep on your back, especially now that your belly has grown. However, experts suggest that you refrain from sleeping on your back because the weight of your belly will block the flow of blood in a major vein.
What works: If you don’t want to sleep on your side for one reason or another, prop yourself up with pillows so that you’re not lying flat on your back and so that you’re almost kind of sitting down. I know what you’re wondering: can I sleep sitting up while pregnant? The answer is.. of course! do what makes you feel comfortable, mama!
It doesn’t sound fun, but honestly, lying on my back during pregnancy while propped up has saved me quite a few times. When I couldn’t sleep on either side and I kept twisting and turning, the only thing that would give me a good night’s sleep is lying on a bunch of pillows and propping myself up into an almost seated position.
Being Sad About Those Stretch Marks
If you are already seeing stretch marks on your belly or around your body, don’t fret. It’s nothing to be upset about. I know, it’s easier said than done, because I myself have also felt sad when I saw the first set of stretch marks on my belly. The only thing we can do really is to keep applying Bio-Oil or CeraVe moisturizer on it, and hope for the best. But because your baby is growing, you may potentially continue to see more stretch marks, even until postpartum. And since there’s nothing we can do to control it, why spend the energy to be upset about it?
What You Should Do During Your Third Trimester:
Here’s what you should do instead during your third trimester:
Keep up with your doctor’s appointments: as you’re nearing your due date, your appointments will become more frequent. Make sure to keep up with them!
If you have questions, ask your OB
Look up positive birthing stories: I love to watch positive birthing stories on youtube. They make me excited for baby and less anxious about the upcoming labour.
Keep doing prenatal yoga, but slow down if you need.
Keep walking and get those steps in!
Get excited for baby’s arrival!