By the time women in the High Desert region reach the third trimester, they start to look toward the light at the end of the tunnel. In just a few short weeks, they will be holding their baby in their arms. Until then, they have to survive what has often been called one of the most trying trimesters of pregnancy.

During the third trimester, women will find that their baby bump seems to grow and grow and grow, and this can create an onslaught of symptoms for Apple Valley women. They also have to go to the OBGYN more frequently. These tips created by obstetrics experts will help women understand what to expect during this final stage of pregnancy.

What Should I Expect During the Third Trimester?

Your body will continue to change as the baby starts to grow in size and continue to put on weight. You may experience new symptoms, such as insomnia, back aches, leg aches and swelling of the ankles and feet. As your baby takes up more space in your body, you may even have problems with indigestion or difficulty breathing. Frequent urination is common during this stage.

It is important to take it easy during the third trimester, and know your own personal limits. If you start to feel tired or sore, you should take a break to rest.

You may feel your first Braxton Hicks contractions. These contractions are practically painless, and are not the labor contractions that you will experience closer to the end of your pregnancy. Think of Braxton Hicks contractions as your uterus training for the big event. You will feel your belly tighten up during these contractions. If you start to have frequent Braxton Hicks contractions, drink much water and put your feet up. This should quell the sensation for the time being. Be careful not to overdo it, or you may experience more Braxton Hicks contractions.

You will continue to gain weight, and most often gain the most amount of weight during the third trimester. Most women can expect to gain about one pound every week of the third trimester. This means that, by the end of pregnancy, the average woman has gained between 25 and 35 pounds. Talk with your OBGYN about your own personal weight gain goals, and be sure to discuss your weight gain on a regular basis.

You may start to leak colostrum from your breasts. This will happen closer to your actual due date, and is a sign that your breasts are preparing for breastfeeding. This is the first milk that your body produces, and it is filled with nutrients for your baby.

During the third trimester, women will likely visit their doctor every 2 weeks. During the last month of pregnancy, they will go once a week to check on the baby. While it may be difficult at times, women should take this opportunity to soak up the last weeks of their pregnancy and prepare for their baby’s arrival.