Your continually rising hormones and your growing baby continue to make their presence felt. Nausea, vomiting, heartburn, and constipation often continue during the third month, but typically begin to subside by the end of this month. In addition to these familiar discomforts, you may have some new physical Experiences.
- Abdominal discomfort. Even though you don’t yet show, you will begin to feel that something important is going on in your pelvis. You may feel a fullness in your lower abdomen. You may also notice mild stabbing pains when you suddenly change positions, going say from lying to sitting, or sitting to standing. As your uterus grows it stretches its supporting ligaments, causing these twitches of pain on both sides of your waist. Gradually easing into changes of position lessens the sudden stretching of these ligaments, and the accompanying pains. During the first trimester, uterine ligament discomfort tends to be sporadic, mild, and more of a nuisance or discomfort than truly painful. In the second and third trimester, the enlarging uterus may further stretch these ligaments, causing these pains to intensify. As your pregnancy progresses, you will learn which is the best position to assume to relieve these pains.
- Between clothing sizes. From the third to the fifth months you may find nothing fits. Your regular clothing and underwear feel too tight, but you look silly in maternity clothes. Buy some comfortable non-maternity pants and skirts one-size larger and with elastic waistbands. You’ll wear them again after the baby is born.
- Hearing life. By the 12th week, you and your doctor may be able to hear your baby’s heartbeat using an ultrasound device (called a Doptone) to detect your baby’s heartbeat. Baby’s heartbeat is about twice as fast as yours, and sounds like rapid-fire “swoosh, swoosh.” You may have expected to hear a faint twittering and not the loud booming sounds that the ultrasound will reveal. You will be amazed how strong your baby’s heart sounds. Remember, it’s magnified many times.
- Breast changes. Your breasts are continuing to gear themselves up to feed your baby after birth. By the end of this month your nipples will probably have enlarged considerably and, as the milk ducts enlarge, and the pigmented area around your nipple may seem to take up half your breast. Getting used to the different feel and look of your breasts and realizing the importance of these changes will prepare you for the more pregnant look that is soon to come to the rest of you. If you are anxious about adjusting to your new body image and don’t look forward to that fuller look, now is a good time to work through those feelings.