It won't be long until you meet the baby—here's what you can expect during these last weeks.
Third Trimester of Pregnancy
You are done with the second trimester! Nice work. While you’re this much closer to meeting your new baby, some of the toughest symptoms of early pregnancy return during the third trimester, like fatigue and the need to pee.
In addition, you’ll start to have new pregnancy symptoms, like Braxton-Hicks contractions, hemorrhoids and annoying aches and pains.
You might find yourself feeling anxious, too, as you get closer to the baby's due date. It’s time to take extra good care of yourself—take naps, meditate, whatever relaxes you.
Baby’s development in the third trimester
At 28 weeks, the start of your third trimester, the baby is around 14.8 inches this week. That’s about the size of a bowling pin. By the end of your third trimester—when you’ll meet your baby!—they’ll be about 19-21 inches in length and weigh anywhere from 2.5 to 3.5 kg. You know, the size of an actual baby.
After 30 weeks, your baby will start putting on around a half a pound a week until birth. It will get cramped in the amniotic sac, and as space gets tighter, your baby will start to nestle into the fetal position.
Around 36 weeks, they’ll also begin to shift their position down away from your ribcage and toward your pelvis as they get ready for birth. That’s called “lightening,” and it’s one of the early stages of labor.
Your baby will be about 19-21 inches and weigh anywhere from 2.5 to 3.5 kg by the end of the third trimester.
During the third trimester, your baby’s brain and neuron development is in full effect. The brain continues to develop the important neural connections for the five senses, so your baby can get ready to see, feel, touch, taste and hear when they’re born. They even start dreaming—rapid eye movement has been detected!
Your little one’s bones are hardening, but your baby’s skull will still be soft at birth to allow the head to move through the birth canal (which is good, because that’s your vagina). These soft spots between parts of their skull are called fontanelles, and it can take a couple of years for them to close. Crazy!
By 36 weeks, your baby’s kidneys and liver are completely functioning. Your baby’s brain and lungs will continue to develop into childhood and beyond, but all the other internal systems are good to go.
At 37 weeks, your baby is considered fully baked and will be ready to make their debut any time now.