Third trimester: weeks 29 to 40

The end of your pregnancy is in sight. It won't be long until your baby arrives. Feelings at this stage of pregnancy tend to vary from tiredness and worry to excitement about the baby.

week 29-40 infographic

The third trimester of your pregnancy is from week 29 to week 40 - months seven, eight and nine.

Feelings at this stage of pregnancy tend to go from tiredness and worry to excitement about the baby.

Your baby continues to grow, and as the third trimester progresses they'll have a better chance if they're born early. You’ll have more checks with the midwife in the third trimester, because it’s important to keep an eye on your and your baby’s health.

The position your baby is in becomes more important now and you may start to think about what happens during labour.

If you can, use these last few weeks to get ready for the baby and enjoy some time for yourself, especially after you start maternity leave. If you have children already, you may find it hard to keep up with them sometimes. Take any offers of help you can get.

One important thing to remember in the third trimester is that you should now go to sleep on your side at night (and during any day time naps). You can read more here about why going to sleep on your side in the third trimester is safer for your baby.

Things to think about in the third trimester of pregnancy

You can still be active during the last three months, but you’ll probably find your body slowing down naturally. Walking is an ideal exercise.

You may also find that pregnancy yoga, pilates or aquanatal classes are good ways to stay active in the third trimester. Staying active doesn’t have to be planned, though. We’ve got some good tips for staying active without going to the gym here.

If you haven’t written your birth plan yet, you may wish to do it now. As part of your birth plan, it’s good to think about the different kinds of pain relief that are available and what you may like to consider when you’re in labour.

Bear in mind, though, that your wishes may change and you might also need some extra help during labour and birth, so keep an open mind.

Find out more about the third trimester


Saigal S, Doyle LW (2008) ‘An overview of mortality and sequelae of preterm birth from infancy to adulthood’, Lancet 371(9608): 261–9:

NICE (2008) Antenatal care for uncomplicated pregnancies, NICE Clinical Guidelines 62. National Institute for Health and Care Excellence

NHS Choices. Your birth plan (Page last reviewed: 07/03/2018 
Next review due: 07/03/2021)

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    Last reviewed on June 28th, 2018. Next review date June 28th, 2021.

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    Please note that these comments are monitored but not answered by Tommy’s. Please call your GP or maternity unit if you have concerns about your health or your baby’s health.
    • By Umu ayan (not verified) on 2 Apr 2020 - 05:42

      I’m 29 weeks pregnant

    • By Shifa (not verified) on 15 Mar 2020 - 18:05

      Hello. I'm in my third trimester but can really say how many weeks I'm gone...
      Although my ultrasound said my due date is 27may...
      Pls when can I start expecting my baby

    • By jennifer (not verified) on 20 Feb 2020 - 22:06

      I only feel comfortable sleeping on my right side ,pls am I ok

    • By grace (not verified) on 15 Feb 2020 - 03:47

      Hi! am eight months pregnant but my Tommy seems so strong/ tight and d baby moves every seconds. is there cause for alarm?

    • By Mercy (not verified) on 12 Feb 2020 - 16:08

      Am 37 weeks plus but from first trimester till now am still having sharp nipple pain, pleas should I be worried

    • By steezz (not verified) on 12 Sep 2019 - 23:45

      Hi. I was taking off my shirt hurriedly when I mistakenly hit my wife a bit hard in the tummy as she came through the door. She's about 32 weeks pregnant. Should we be worried? We are actually

    • By Watty (not verified) on 24 Jul 2019 - 01:57

      Hi im 36 weeks 6 days while sat on toilet u bent over to pick something up off floor. I was uncomfortable 5 mins or so after could i have harmed baby

    • By Jyothi (not verified) on 9 Jul 2019 - 17:36

      I'm in 6th month my baby position is posterior uper segment vt grade1 can we sex

    • By Tricia (not verified) on 3 Jul 2019 - 07:40

      Hii, please Ive been hearing sex brings labour but my husband is not around, will it affect my labour and delivery if ive not had sex in my last trimester?

    • By Pretty (not verified) on 2 Jul 2019 - 05:47

      How many month you are when you are in 29

    • By Alison (not verified) on 12 Jun 2019 - 01:40

      HELLO, I am 35weeks gone nw bt having this serious virginal discharge n itching..
      And it disturbing me because some milk colour discharge come out too

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 19 Jun 2019 - 14:17

      Check with your ob. It might be a yeast infection.

    • By pecky (not verified) on 10 Jun 2019 - 11:14

      hi,I always feel pain ,as if my vagina is tight during sex with my husband,what could be the cause,am 29weeks

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 19 Jun 2019 - 14:20

      My ob said it's normal if you feel that way, because our vaginal nerves are getting bigger since the pressure of the baby growing inside our belly are all going there.

    • By Shams (not verified) on 23 May 2019 - 22:29

      Am29weeks but water came out of me should I be worried

    • By mary (not verified) on 23 Apr 2019 - 13:35

      I am 30weeks pregnant now and my abdomen is always heavy

    • By Anonymous (not verified) on 19 Jun 2019 - 14:22

      It's normal

    • By Penny (not verified) on 4 Apr 2019 - 11:36

      My daughter is 37 weeks how often should she be seeing the doctor.

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 4 Apr 2019 - 15:15

      Hi - Thank you for your information.
      The NHS schedule of antenatal appointments advise that from 36 weeks onward you should be having an antenatal check every 2 weeks in a low risk pregnancy.

    • By Marie Gable (not verified) on 24 Jan 2019 - 10:44

      I am 6weeks pregnant as of yesterday which was the 23 so when will I turn 7 weeks

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 24 Jan 2019 - 11:24

      Hi - Thank you for your message.
      Your gestation (how many weeks pregnant you are) is determined by the your LMP - the first day of your last menstrual period. you can work out how many weeks pregnant you are by using a pregnancy calculator such as the one in the following link:

    • By Tin (not verified) on 20 Dec 2018 - 04:54

      My first ob didn't tell me to get a CAS and now im on my 29weeks and got my new ob, and she said that it's not advisavle anymore to take CAS

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 20 Dec 2018 - 10:10

      Hi, In the UK we're not familiar with this abbreviation (CAS). You are welcome to get back to us with more information. Tommy's midwives

    • By Becky (not verified) on 14 Dec 2018 - 08:42

      Hi I'm 31 weeks pregnant I was told 3 weeks ago my baby is engaged I'm getting a lot of pain in vaginal area and I am extremely uncomfortable my bump has also dropped should I be worried?

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 17 Dec 2018 - 17:01

      Hi, It's unusual for the head to engage at 28 weeks but not impossible for him/her to go in and out of the pelvis. Talk to your midwife about the vaginal dryness or use a lubricant. and if it is the pelvis that is uncomfortable you could ask to see a physiotherapist.

    • By Sophie (not verified) on 3 Sep 2018 - 15:34


      I've loved using the Tommy's week by week guide and have found it really helpful.

      However, having hit the third trimester, on the third trimester page on the third paragraph down it says:

      "Your baby continues to grow, and as the third trimester progresses they'll have a better chance if they're born early."

      I've found this a bit strange as I'm not sure what you mean by 'better chance' and if it means 'better chance of survival' it might be a bit misleading to say 'they'll have a better chance if they're born early' - because my understanding is 37 weeks is healthy - before that is not! Isn't it that they'll have a better chance if they're just born when they should be born (e.g. not really late, not really early?).

      Not a big deal, I just wanted to draw your attention to it.

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 11 Sep 2018 - 09:31

      Thank you for your comments. Just to clarify, a baby is not premature if delivered between 37 and 42 completed weeks of pregnancy. Risks (for example low blood sugars or poor temperature control) linked to premature birth reduce the closer a baby is born to 37 weeks.

    • By Willow (not verified) on 23 Aug 2018 - 10:48

      Hi, Im currently 37+2 weeks with my 4th baby.
      I've been into hospital with reduced movements 8 times, baby had static growth on the last scan too.
      First baby was an SGA on 4th centile which wasnt caught during pregnancy and not picked up during my second.
      I just keep getting told to ignore it and carry on as normal. Its a similar situation to my 2nd and 3rd babies and neither did well during labour, Im really scared for her safety. What should I do?

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 23 Aug 2018 - 14:46

      Hi Willow, Thank you for your comment.
      You need to call the hospital and be seen as soon as you can, if you are still concerned about your baby's movements then you need to go in and be seen. It is important that you stress the your Dr or midwife that you have a history of having small babies and as your baby has been found to have static growth then you should be monitored closely. Please call the hospital as soon as you can and be seen. Take Care, Tommy's Midwives x

    • By Carly (not verified) on 10 Jul 2018 - 06:49

      I'm 26 weeks pregnant and my right ribs are so sore and if i bend or anythink it feels like my ribs are moving

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 12 Jul 2018 - 13:16

      Hi Carly,
      Sorry to hear that you are in a lot of pain, some rib pain can be very common in pregnancy. If you are struggling then your midwife or doctor may refer you to a physiotherapist for some support. Do be aware of your posture and try to do some light gentle exercise which also helps.
      Best wishes
      Tommy's midwife

    • By Zeba (not verified) on 24 Jun 2018 - 13:16

      Hi,I m pregnant in third trimester .I feels pain in my thighs .knees and ankles .what could be causes.plz ad vice me.

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 25 Jun 2018 - 16:38

      Hi Zeba, I am not able to give you a diagnosis without examining you so I would suggest that you see a doctor for advice. If your legs are swollen and painful this may be associated with a condition called pre-eclampsia or it may be nothing to do with the pregnancy. Either way it would be best to check. Take care of yourself x

    • By Abid nawaz (not verified) on 18 May 2018 - 23:59

      Plz tell me what a reason my wife is pregnant from 6,August 2017 and still she is pregnant 19,may 2018 plz tell me what a reason I m so worried about she I m waiting

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 21 May 2018 - 15:02

      Hi Abid, These dates indicate that she is 41 weeks pregnant. It is quite common for a woman to go slightly longer than her due date. Is she receiving care during her pregnancy? If you are concerned please try to arrange to see a midwife or a doctor. Best wishes

    • By tony (not verified) on 8 May 2018 - 23:16

      Hi my wife is pregnant with twins and in her third trimester. She feels pains in her thighs,waist and abdomen on and off. What could be the cause.

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 10 May 2018 - 14:41

      Hi Tony
      Congratulations on your Twinnies!
      It could be caused by many things- yourself or your wife are very welcome to get in touch via email or phone - [email protected] or 0800 0147800 to go through this in far more detail.
      It could be down to the weight of the babies/amniotic fluid/placenta on the body - this can cause hip/leg/abdo pain as there extra weight is a big strain on the body. It is possible that she has Pelvic girdle pain/Symphysis pubis dysfunction which can cause this pain too.
      If the pain is very severe though and she has not been seen in the hospital maternity triage, then she should go to be reviewed as soon as possible, just get checked over for peace of mind and be referred to a physio/consultant if needs be for further follow up.
      Please take good care of yourself, your wife and the babies :)
      Sophie Tommy's Midwife

    • By Seema Goyal (not verified) on 19 Apr 2018 - 14:10

      Quite helpful information..

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 19 Apr 2018 - 16:38

      Hi Seema, Thank you for your comment.

      We are pleased that you are finding the information helpful, take care, Tommy's Midwives x

    • By Sophia Eki (not verified) on 26 Jan 2018 - 17:10

      The info was quite helpful! Thank you very much for it!

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 1 Sep 2016 - 09:45

      That's excellent news!

    • By Eneah (not verified) on 26 Aug 2016 - 21:09

      It's helping

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