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The Mommy Hub: Pregnancy

The Third Trimester of Pregnancy: How to Survive

Woman in third trimester of pregnancy sitting in a chair

Hey, Mama! Welcome to the third trimester of pregnancy! This is where things get interesting.

Nesting is about to hit if it hasn’t already, you’re on the home stretch and feel all the pressure of the things you need to do, and–oh, yeah, Bumpy is BIG! I know how you feel (twice over). Here are 10 tips to survive the third trimester to help you out.

Note: The first three tips are for second-time or more mamas in the third trimester of pregnancy, so if this is your first kiddo go ahead and skip on down to tip 4 and start there.

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10 Tips to Survive the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

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1: When Little Takes A Nap During the Third Trimester of Pregnancy, So Do You!

I know. We all chuckle at the idea that “when Baby sleeps, you sleep”. That’s the time when we feel like we can actually get stuff done.

It’s a different story during pregnancy–especially the third trimester. If this is your second pregnancy, you’ve probably already discovered that this is an entirely different game than your first.

The exhaustion is real. You’re tired from just being pregnant, and now you have a little one to chase around.

When your little goes down for a nap during the day, do yourself a favor and take one, too! Getting quality sleep at this point in the game is a challenge already. Those naps will help you get from Point A to Point B relatively sane.

Even if you can’t fall asleep, find a comfy place to sit down and put up your feet with a glass of something cold to drink. Those moments of rest are so healthy for you and baby!

2: When Little Snacks, You Snack

So we already know tots love to graze. They eat, and then it seems like 15 minutes later they’re hungry again.

Did you know that “grazing” is good for you, too? It helps you stay fueled up and helps you maintain whatever energy you can.

When it’s time for Little to stop and have a snack, treat yourself too! Sitting down together to share something to eat is a great way to bond as well before the new addition to your family arrives.

You’re experiencing the last days of it being just the two of you, so cherish all those moments.

3: Let Someone Watch Little For You

If you need to let someone watch your little for a day while you crash (or just sit and do nothing), that is OKAY!

Don’t you dare feel guilty!

It’s healthy to admit that you need a break now and again. Sure, go ahead and accomplish some tasks, but don’t wear yourself out.

This is your one opportunity to take a real, honest-to-goodness break.

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4: Limit Your To-Do List

Oh am I ever so guilty of not doing this!

We get ambitious and plan 500 tasks for the day, pregnant or not. It’s a mom thing. Then, when we can’t complete them all in a day we beat ourselves up.

I totally get it. Like I said, it’s a universal mom thing.

This is where we need to be realistic with ourselves during pregnancy. Yes, you can still accomplish tasks during pregnancy. You’ll probably find you’re most productive during your second trimester.

But when the third trimester of pregnancy arrives, don’t be surprised when you have to slow down. Like, you literally can’t keep up with your previous schedule.

It’s a big adjustment but you have to learn to accept that you will need to slow down. In my opinion it’s one of the hardest things about pregnancy.

Rather than trying to accomplish a huge amount of tasks in a day, ration your tasks to a few things that you can handle every day.

Pro-Tip: Split up the more straining tasks throughout the week so that you don’t exhaust yourself all at once.

5: Find Ways to Make Tasks Easier During the Third Trimester of Pregnancy

That aching back and those sore muscles are probably complaining a bit, especially at the end of the day.

Nothing like some motivation to get a little creative, right?

Find ways to make things easier on yourself. Here’s a list of a few ways you can make your chores and tasks easier.

  1. Get a laundry basket with wheels and a handle so that you don’t have to prop that bulky thing on your sore hip.
  2. Have a friend, spouse or family member come over and play with your little while you get some chores done, or vice versa.
  3. Use a birthing ball for “sitting tasks” like folding laundry. The birthing ball is great for aligning your pelvis and getting both you and baby in good position for birth.
  4. Sit on the birthing ball while you give your little a bath. Spare your back and tummy!

6: Take Time Out for Self Care During The Third Trimester of Pregnancy

Who’s got time for that, right?

But seriously, it’s important to take care of yourself. The idea of “pampering” can vary from person to person. Whether your idea is a hot bath, a mani/pedi or massage, it’s a great idea to indulge every once in a while.

When new baby comes there won’t be time for pampering for a while. Soak those feet, get that massage, and enjoy every second of it!

Caring for your body, allowing yourself some rest and some slack are so healthy and can only reap good benefits.

Remember, it’s not selfish. You need to take care of you so that you can take care of your littles!

Pregnant woman in third trimester holding her belly with text overlay.

7: Stay Hydrated During the Third Trimester

I speak from experience. One of the fastest ways to take a downward spiral during the third trimester is to become dehydrated.

Getting dehydrated sets you up for headaches, fatigue, infections, and a whole host of other problems.

Being dehydrated during labor can also make your contractions whacky and harder to handle. I learned this firsthand during my labor with by second baby.

Avoid all this craziness by drinking plenty of water. Remember, you need more water during pregnancy than you would in a normal state.

Wondering how much water you need to drink? Here’s an article by Healthline to help you out. Just don’t forget to come back and read the rest of these tips!

8: Get Picky About Your Support Network

Having healthy-minded, positive people around you during pregnancy is absolutely crucial for support. During the third trimester, it’s more important than ever.

You know who they are–those people in your life that help you stay focused on what truly matters, don’t let you beat yourself up, and provide you with a lot of encouragement and affirmation.

Those are the people you want closer than ever during the third trimester.

And, unfortunately, you know who they are–those people that spaz out, hype you up, raise your blood pressure, and don’t have a whole lot of good to say.

Those are the people that need strong boundaries. They may not be the best people to have close by while you focus on surviving the third trimester and prepare for your new baby.

If you’re feeling tired, overwhelmed and anxious during the third trimester, think carefully about who you call and reach out to for help.

9: Prepare for Labor to Stay Focused

Nothing makes the third trimester more livable than the idea of it being almost over! As the days and weeks progress, start getting a plan in place for labor and delivery.

Not just where you want to have your baby and all the cute stuff you need, but exactly how you want to labor, where, and who you want nearby.

This is also a great time to plan and pack your hospital bags.

Prepare your body for labor. Do stretches, take walks, and start focusing your mind on being strong for labor and childbirth.

10: Have A “Help!” Plan

No matter how strong or prepared you feel, every pregnant person goes through moments where they feel like they’re falling apart.

First of all, that’s okay. You don’t always have to have it all together.

Think of two people off the top of your head, right now, that would drop everything to help you out. Who’s that bestie that answers your texts at 2:00 am?

Who is that family member that has been there for everything in a supportive, positive way?

Which people in your life make you feel the most confident, supported and the most encouraged?

If you don’t have those people in your life, reach out to your doctor. It is okay to reach out for help beyond your regular OB appointments.

Your OB can provide a lot more help than just a pregnancy check. They can point you toward helpful resources for support and care so that you don’t feel alone.

Bottom line: when you start to feel like you’re losing it (because you just might like the rest of us), reach out and get help.

Do not try to handle everything alone. It’s not healthy, and it’s not always safe.

Whether it’s for an actual act of assistance, advice, or just an ear for listening, find a safe place where you can have the help you need. It’s crucial for surviving the third trimester.

And it’s very much okay.

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