Your Baby

Welcome to the third and final trimester of pregnancy! During the seventh month, your baby can sense the difference between light and dark outside the uterus. While he or she should still be moving frequently, your baby’s movements may not be so wild, since there is less room in the uterus by the seventh month of pregnancy. Many babies have now turned so that they are head down in the uterus, preparing for birth in just three more months. More fat deposits are forming in your baby during the seventh month in preparation for regulating your baby’s temperature right after birth. With specialized care, some babies are able to survive outside the womb at this point, but your baby is still safest inside the uterus. At the end of the seventh month of pregnancy, your baby will measure between thirteen and fifteen inches long, and will weigh between two and two and a half pounds.

Your Body

The third trimester is marked by the immense growth of your baby, and, of course, yourself. Some women begin to feel the effects of their size at the seventh month of pregnancy. You may have also noticed your first Braxton-Hicks contractions, or the momentary hardening of the uterus. These are preparing your body for childbirth and they’re typically painless. In the seventh month of pregnancy, you may notice increased vaginal discharge called leukorrhea. The seventh month may also bring on leg cramps, aching in your back and abdomen, pain in your pelvis, and swelling of your feet and hands. As your uterus expands, you may have to urinate more frequently, and you may experience shortness of breath. You may also notice a yellowish substance called colostrum leaking from your breasts. Bleeding gums, nasal congestion, and nosebleeds are still common in the seventh month of pregnancy.

Your Emotions

Hopefully you are still feeling optimistic and energetic during the seventh month of pregnancy, but you may begin feeling a little tired of being pregnant during the third trimester. Many women are beginning to feel “ready to get it over with” during this month. At the same time, you may still have anxieties about childbirth and parenthood. Having a good support system around you will help you through these last few months of pregnancy.

If you haven’t already, it is a good time to begin discussing childbirth and birthing plans with your doctor or midwife. Preparing for these things may help you feel more at ease about labor and childbirth.