You’ve made it to the third trimester - can you believe it?! Even though you may not be able to touch your toes, you’re getting close to the finish line! These are the things you can do during the third trimester to prepare for baby’s arrival.
Continue taking a prenatal vitamin with folate daily.
Set up the bassinet or crib in your bedroom.
The AAP recommends that baby share the same room (but not the same bed) as you for the first six to twelve months.
Assemble gear that you’ll use in the first few months (stroller, swing, play gym, etc.).
Install the carseat around 34 weeks.
If you get into an accident while the car seat is installed, check with the manufacturer to see if you need to replace it or not. Your auto insurance may replace it for free, but it can take a couple weeks.
Encourage your partner to pack a bag as well.
Pack your baby’s diaper bag to bring to the hospital.
Locate all documents the hospital or birthing center requires for labor day, and put any that you don’t need on a daily basis in a folder.
If you’re planning to breastfeed, check with your insurance provider on how to get your free pump.
Purchase anything left on your registry that you want before baby’s arrival.
If you had a baby shower, send thank you notes.
Do Kegel exercises to help strengthen your pelvic floor.
Pamper yourself while you have the time and the energy (hair cut, manicure, pedicure, eyebrow wax, etc.).
Decide who will take care of your pets once you go into labor. Share a house key with the pet sitter if applicable.
Make sure your pet is up to date on shots if they will be boarded.
Learn about newborn basics: safe sleep, sleep cues, hunger cues, tummy time, sample feed/nap/play “schedules”, when to call the pediatrician or 911 about a health concern, and correct car seat installation and buckling.
If recommended by your doctor, consider a chiropractor or prenatal massage to alleviate any back pain you may be experiencing.
Ask your doctor about counting kicks, and start keeping track of your baby’s activity.
Learn about contractions (Braxton Hicks vs. true labor contractions), and how to time them in preparation for labor.
Ask your doctor at what point you should go to the hospital for labor.
Register for delivery with the hospital.
Finalize your birth plan and print a few copies to put in your hospital bag.
Schedule your delivery if it is planned (induction, C-Section, etc.).
Interview and select a pediatrician who accepts your insurance.
Ask your employer and/or doctor to fill out any paperwork required for FMLA, Paid Family Leave, etc. that can be completed prior to baby’s birth.
If you are enrolled in a short term disability plan, call the provider ahead of time and pre-register.
Schedule your first day off from work, even though it can be subject to change.
Ask your insurance company how long you have after baby is born to add him or her to the insurance policy.
Decide who your baby’s guardian should be in the event of an untimely death, and update your will accordingly.