What Meghan Markle could expect in her third trimester of pregnancy

Danielle Stacey
Royal Correspondent
Meghan revealed she’s around six months pregnant during her visit to Birkenhead on 14 January [Photos: Getty]

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex announced they’re expecting their first child at the start of their tour of their Australia in October.

Kensington Palace confirmed the baby is due in spring 2019, but have kept the actual due date under wraps.

During Meghan and Harry’s visit to Birkenhead on 14 January, the Duchess told well-wishers that she is around six months pregnant and is due to give birth at the end of April or beginning of May.

This means that Meghan be about to enter her third trimester of pregnancy, which begins around the 28-week mark.

So what could Meghan and other women who are in the same stage of their pregnancy expect during the third trimester?

Yahoo Style UK spoke to National Childbirth Trust’s (NCT) Practice Manager, Val Willcox, to find out more.

Symptoms

There’s a lot of changes as your pregnancy progresses and with the increased weight as your baby grows, there can be more physical symptoms.

Val explains that while every pregnancy is different, symptoms in the third trimester can include:

  • Oedema – swelling of the hands and feet.
  • Back pain.
  • Constipation – 40% of women will experience this, so it’s important to stay hydrated.
  • Pelvic girdle pain – stiffness in your pelvic joints or the joints moving unevenly at either the back or front of your pelvis.
  • Interrupted sleep.
  • Heartburn and indigestion.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Braxton Hick contractions – also known as practice contractions, caused by the muscles of the uterus tightening.

But it’s not all bad, Val says that some women can actually start to feel more comfortable towards the end of your pregnancy.

The final trimester can be an exciting time for mums-to-be [Photo: Getty]

“As the baby moves down the pelvis in preparation for birth, some women suddenly feel they have more space and be able to breathe a little easier.

“It’s also a really exciting time for the Duke and Duchess because it starts to become real the closer they get to the due date.”

Maternity leave

According to reports, the Duchess is keen to work well into her pregnancy, but what would a health expert advise?

Val says: “It’s such an individual decision, some women work right up to the birth because of a financial choice or so that they get a longer break on maternity leave.

“Unless there’s complications, if a mum-to-be is fit and well, continuing to work is completely up to her.”

The Duchess announced her first patronages this month [Photo: Getty]

Like her sister-in-law Kate, Meghan is renowned for her love of her high heels, but is it safe to wear them during the final few months of pregnancy?

Val explains: “Again, it’s down to the individual’s comfort. If you’re heavily pregnant, you may find that you experience more fatigue, but plenty of women wear heels during their pregnancy.”

Being active

Meghan has often spoke of her love of yoga and revealed that she practised it to combat jetlag during her royal tour of Australia in October, when she was in the first few months of her pregnancy.

Val says there are so many benefits to mother and baby, if you’re active during pregnancy.

“Women who regularly exercise find that it helps them to feel good, it can contribute to a healthy birth weight for the baby and it does wonders for their mental health.”

Meghan spoke about her love for yoga during the royal tour of Australia in October, when she first announced her pregnancy [Photo: PA]

She adds that yoga in particular can help during labour, as breathing practice can allow women to cope with the intensity of contractions.

If you didn’t do a particular activity before getting pregnant, now isn’t the time to suddenly take up running. Low impact sports are best overall, especially when you’re in your third trimester.

After birth, Val said that mothers can start to do gentle exercise again when they feel ready to, but most wait until after their six-week postnatal check. High-impact sports, such as running and aerobics, should be avoided until then.

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Meghan Markle pregnant: Baby due date, possible names and latest news

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