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Woman holding her pregnant belly during second or third trimester

The Top 3 Things To Know for Each Trimester

from the honeymoon phase to false starts

If you recently found out you’re pregnant (congratulations!), and it’s your first go-‘round, there’s a ton of information about to be thrown your way.

Of course, you’ll know most of the things you’ll need when baby arrives, such as items to baby-proof the house, the right car seat, the best stroller and so on. Then there’s the matter of what’s safe to eat while pregnant, your breastfeeding decisions, nausea, etc.

But during your pregnancy, there are other things to pay attention to with your body. Dr. Jessica Shepherd—OBGYN, women’s health expert and founder of Her Viewpoint—shares her top three things pregnant women should be on the lookout for during each trimester:


  • “This is when women will be very tired from the effects of progesterone and growth of the new baby.”
  • “[This] can be expected at this time in the pregnancy and, if not heavy or bright red, can be due to placental attachment.”
  • “It is safe to continue exercise [at this time].”


  • A (relatively) easy timeframe. This trimester, “known as the ‘honeymoon’ portion of pregnancy due to feeling better, increased appetite and no severe discomfort from abdominal stretching.”
  • OK, It’s not a complete honeymoon. “Very commonly, round ligament pain will be felt in between weeks 16–22.”
  • “The exciting part of fetal movement begins at 22 weeks for first-time moms, and for repeat moms as early as 18-20 weeks.”


  • “The last stretch begins at 28 weeks, and this is when the baby does most of its growth in size.”
  • Continue exercise. “Working out in all trimesters is still very safe and is recommended by ACOG, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.”
  • False starts. “Braxton Hicks contractions can start as early as 34 weeks, and sometimes can be relieved with drinking water (because dehydration may cause contractions of the uterus).”

Image courtesy of iStock.