Third trimester (26 weeks to 40 weeks)

During this trimester of your pregnancy you will start getting excited about meeting your baby. You may also feel a bit anxious and tired. This is perfectly normal but talk to your healthcare provider if you feel overly anxious or worried about anything specific. Here’s a list of some things that you should know that will help you feel a little more at ease:

  • During the third trimester, you will become visibly pregnant. This may make you a little more uncomfortable as baby is growing, putting more pressure on your ribs and pelvis.
  • Pertussis vaccine (Tdap) is recommended for all pregnant women in the third trimester (26-40 weeks). This provides the baby with passive immunity until it receives a vaccine at age 2 months. This is recommended for each pregnancy, even if recent vaccination has been given. For more information, please visit the Centre for Disease Control website
  • You still need to watch for signs of preterm labour.
  • You can monitor your baby’s movements as a way to know your baby is healthy and doing well. See Counting your baby’s movements.
  • As you get closer to your due date, you will start seeing your healthcare provider every 1 to 2 weeks.
  • You may need further ultrasounds to measure baby’s growth, you may need more blood tests if there are any issues with your blood pressure, and you will have a screening test done to find out if you will need treatment for Group B Streptococcus (GBS).
  • During this time you can start getting ready for the big day by thinking about what you will need to bring to the hospital, complete your birth plan if you choose to make one, decide on the support people you would like to have with you.
  • For either a vaginal or caesarean birth, do not shave or wax your abdomen or pubic area for 7 days before your due date or the date of your scheduled Caesarean section. See Shaving before giving birth.

For more information on preconception, the various stages of pregnancy, labour and delivery of the your baby and other important information on parenting, please refer to the link below for the book "Healthy Beginnings: Giving your baby the best start from preconception to birth" endorsed by the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada.

Healthy Beginnings