When you enter your third trimester of pregnancy, which is from week 13 to week 26, it’s time to start preparing for the arrival of your baby. One important step in this process is visiting your OB/GYN (obstetrician-gynecologist) more frequently. The OB/GYN will be monitoring your health closely during this critical period of pregnancy and recommend a visit every two or four weeks.
At 36 weeks, your visits to the OB/GYN will be weekly until delivery. With each visit, you will receive valuable information and help keep both you and your baby healthy throughout the remainder of the pregnancy.
Let’s talk about what to expect when you visit your obstetrician during the third trimester of your pregnancy.
Physical Exam and Testing
During this appointment, your doctor will perform a physical exam to check on both your health, as well as your baby’s. This may include checking blood pressure, measuring fundal height (the distance from the pubic bone to the top of the uterus), listening for fetal heart tones, assessing fetal movement, and checking protein and glucose levels from your urine sample.
If there are any tests needed due to high-risk factors such as advanced maternal age or family history, they can be ordered at this time, too. One example is the nonstress test, which checks the health of the fetus. The doctor may check you for group B streptococcus (GBS) infection and sexually transmitted diseases, which can be very harmful to your baby.
Vaccines are also important during this time. The most common vaccinations protect against the influenza virus, the tetanus toxoid, and acellular pertussis (Tdap), which, if a pregnant mother catches it, can cause complications in fetal development.
Discussion of Any Questions and Concerns
Your doctor may discuss labor preparation options with you at this point, as well as review any questions or concerns that have arisen since the last visit. It is recommended that you keep asking questions of your OB/GYN, such as how to know if you are already in labor, how to manage pain from contractions, and what to include in your birth plan.
Additionally, if you are having difficulty sleeping, experiencing pelvic pain, have shortness of breath, or have vaginal discharge, it is important that these issues be discussed with your OB/GYN, so they can provide appropriate care.
Birth Plan Review
A birth plan is a plan for your delivery, detailing your wishes for the time. At this point, it would be wise for you to review your birth plan with your OB/GYN, who can help ensure you and your baby have a safe delivery by making sure safety protocols are met.
OB/GYN in Syracuse, NY
Do not miss visits to your OB/GYN during the third trimester of pregnancy. At University OB/GYN Associates, our obstetricians-gynecologists provide comprehensive services for pregnant mothers and their babies. If you have a high-risk pregnancy, you and your fetus need special care, which our maternal and fetal medicine specialists are highly trained and most qualified to provide. Call us today at (315) 464-4458 to schedule an appointment or use our online request form.