A typical pregnancy lasts about 40 weeks. During that time, as a partner, you can support the mom-to-be in many ways. One of which is to educate yourself about pregnancy and be aware of what happens during each three-month period, known as a trimester, leading up to the birth of the baby.
The third and final trimester, weeks 28-40, is the ‘home stretch of the pregnancy, but it’s usually when your partner starts to feel the most uncomfortable, says the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). As the baby gets larger, so does your partner’s body. This causes discomfort, and it may become more difficulty for your partner to sleep, walk quickly or do routine tasks. Also – excitement and nerves are high – for both of you!
Also, the latest recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) say that all parents-to-be should visit a pediatrician during their third trimester of pregnancy. The prenatal visit is very important as it is the first step in creating a supportive, safe and strong home for a new baby. Conversations can include what parents can expect in the visit schedule, formula vs. breast milk, the immunization schedule, safety issues, and the office and provider availability.
As the due date nears, there are a few tasks that a partner can do to help get ready. One is to help get a maternity bag ready. Labor is definitely unpredictable, so it’s a great idea to be ready. (We have a handy checklist.) Another is to install the car seat ahead of time to ensure that it’s installed properly. (We have a few additional car seat safety tips for families.) It’s also time to “baby proof” the house.
Make sure you check out our previous blog posts on providing support during the first and second trimesters.