Approved by the What’s Up Moms Medical Advisory Board
Welcome to the 3rd trimester! You are 6 months pregnant and you’ve made it to the homestretch (woooooot!). Shiz is getting real right about now. You are having a baby. It is happening – and soon.
Baby’s now around 14 ½ inches long – the height of a medium movie theater popcorn. Eyelids are no longer fused shut – they can now open and close, plus they’re now adorned with eyelashes, which is fancy. Deposits of fat under the skin are now adding some padding which will smooth out that wrinkled skin a little.
From this point on you’ll be a more regular fixture at the OB’s office, going in every two weeks. At this week’s visit and the next few, doc will do all the regular stuff including checking your weight, blood pressure, urine (for protein and sugar levels), and measuring fetal heart rate as well as the height of your uterus. You’ll now start monitoring baby’s kicks; doc will ask you to track how often baby moves and to note any changes in intensity or frequency.
Feeling breathless walking up the stairs or even just talking? It’s real. Baby is encroaching on your lungs and diaphragm which may have you panting at every bit of activity. Hang in there and take it easy: this will ease up in a few weeks when baby drops down lower in your pelvis.
As for your achy, breaky body: if you can make time each day for a bath, do it, since floating in water takes the stress off your bones and joints like nothing else can. Just avoid water that’s hot enough to raise your core body temp above 102 degrees Fahrenheit, and limit your soak to 10 minutes. Throw in some epsom salts to soothe your muscles and work their anti-inflammatory magic all over your body – including in… uh… your hemorrhoid region. (No hot tubs, jacuzzis or saunas, though.)
Oh and BTW your boobs may already be producing colostrum, a yellowish substance that serves as baby’s first food – think of it as “pre-milk” milk for the earliest days of baby’s life. It probably won’t be flowing in any substantial way at this point, but for peace of mind you can always grab some nursing pads to place in your bra — you’ll be using ‘em in spades down the line so it can’t hurt to have some on hand now.
OK, we’ll let you get back to marinating now. You are having a baby. A human one. Carry on.