The Three Trimesters of Pregnancy






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The average pregnancy lasts right around 40 weeks. Some women go a little longer in their pregnancy, and some go a little shorter, both are perfectly normal.


Pregnancy is divided into three different stages, known as trimesters. Read on to find out more about each trimester of pregnancy and what happens during that stage.

1. First Trimester

The first trimester consists of weeks 1-12 of pregnancy. The first trimester is a very important time during pregnancy, when all of the pieces are falling into place to grow a healthy baby.


You may not look pregnant during your first trimester, but you can be sure that many changes are taking place. Funny enough, most women don’t even realize they are pregnant until they are about 6 weeks along or so, and their first trimester will be almost halfway over before they even know they are expecting.


Lots of hormonal changes take place during the first trimester. This is the trimester where you will notice lots of nausea and morning sickness, fatigue, and sometimes constipation and headaches, as well as other symptoms.

2. Second Trimester

The second trimester of pregnancy is considered to be weeks 13-27. It is usually the time during pregnancy where things start to balance out, and women who experienced lots of uncomfortable symptoms during the first trimester will probably start to feel much better.


This is also the period of time where most women begin to “show”, and really look like a pregnant woman. The baby does a lot of important growing and developing during this period. Most women also begin to feel the baby move during this time, and this is when a gender ultrasound can be done if the parents wish to have one.


The second trimester is a really exciting time for most women, and the time when most women begin to feel that their pregnancy is “real”.

3. Third Trimester

The third trimester is the homestretch, and is considered to be weeks 28 through the birth of the baby, usually around weeks 37-40. Most women will go from seeing their doctor once per month before, to seeing their provider once every week or every two weeks during the third trimester.


The baby should be really getting big during the third trimester, which means women might be experiencing more heartburn, back pain and sore, achy feet. Many women also start to get the “nesting” urge during the third trimester, and may spend lots of time organizing and cleaning in preparation for baby’s arrival.


During the third trimester the baby will usually turn and get ready for birth by positioning itself in the birth canal. The third trimester can be a very exciting time, but many mothers to be get very anxious during this time, because there is often much to do and very little time. If you have made it to the third trimester, you are definitely in the homestretch, and it is almost time to meet your little one.

Ms. Belanger has 20 years of experience in women's healthcare and nursing, including labor and delivery, postpartum and antenatal. She is passionate toward improving both maternal and fetal outcomes of high-risk obstetrics patients.