3 Months Pregnant: Symptoms, Body Changes, Baby Development & Diet

3rd Month of Pregnancy – Symptoms, Body Changes & Diet

The first three months are the most exciting part of the pregnancy period. When you’re a 3 months pregnant woman, you know you are pregnant but are not visibly pregnant to the world around you. You keep looking at the calendar to count the days, take a careful look at your diet, find yourself growing and expanding, and begin to feel the life growing inside you. Also, it’s quite reassuring that you have made it to this point in your pregnancy! As for the foetus, the body parts begin to develop around this time, and the sex organs are also in place by this time.

Three Months Pregnant – Symptoms

There are numerous pregnancy in 3rd month symptoms. You will notice the following changes and symptoms in your body during the third month of pregnancy:

1. Morning Sickness

Nausea and vomiting could peak by the third month. Most pregnant women are relieved of these symptoms by the end of the first trimester.

2. Fatigue

Pregnancy hormones make you feel tired and drowsy. The body needs extra blood to supply essential nutrients to the fetus, affecting blood sugar and pressure levels.

3. Loss of Bladder Control

Increased formation of urine and the pressure exerted on the bladder by the growing uterus can cause a greater urge to urinate often.

4. Constipation

Higher progesterone levels slow down the digestion process.

5. Vaginal Discharge

High oestrogen levels and the dilation of the cervix and vaginal walls result in an off-white or translucent mucous discharge from the vagina, which prevents any infection from passing into the uterus.

6. Leg Cramps

Severe leg cramps and pain may be common during the night. You may need to include potassium and iron in your diet, and some gentle exercises could also help to reduce discomfort.

7. Back Pain and Abdominal Pain

Changes in hormone levels and the growing uterus stretch the ligaments and tendons, leading to back pain and pain in the lower abdomen. Try doing some low-impact exercises and stretching but only after prior consultation with your doctor.

8. Mood Swings

Hormonal changes can definitely affect your emotions. You may find yourself experiencing an array of emotions, from being sad and low-spirited to happy and joyous.

9. Bleeding Gums

Changes in your body’s hormone levels also lead to inflammation and bleeding of the gums.

10. Heartburn

The growing uterus puts pressure on the stomach and your expanding body slows down the digestion process. The pressure on the stomach causes the acids to move upwards, causing heartburn. Eat at regular times and try eating small meals.

11. Varicose Veins

As the uterus expands, it compresses the blood vessels and slows down blood circulation. This causes the swelling of the veins in your legs. Your increasing weight could also add to the load on the circulatory system leading to the appearance of varicose veins.

12. Nasal Congestion

Increased blood volume leads to the swelling and inflammation of the nasal passages. This, in turn, leads to a stuffy or blocked nose.

13. Food Cravings

It is very common for expectant mothers to develop a craving for some types of food. Alternatively, you could even develop a dislike of the smell or taste of certain foods and other substances too.

Food Cravings in Pregnancy

Don’t get too worried about them if you notice any of these symptoms during the third month of pregnancy, as they’re all a natural part of this phenomenon.

Physical and Emotional Changes in the Third Month of Pregnancy

Your pregnancy belly will slowly start to show during the third month of pregnancy, as your uterus will now be about the size of a grapefruit. The uterus is lifted up into the abdomen area and covers the entire pelvic region. You will definitely experience physical and emotional changes in this phase. Some of these changes might occur in the second or third trimester, if not the first itself.

1. Tender Breasts

Your breasts become tender as your body prepares for breastfeeding. The size of the breasts increases and the areola becomes darker and larger.

2. Visible Stretch Marks

You will notice stretch marks on your three months pregnant belly and breasts due to your skin stretching.

3. Dark Line on the Abdomen

The melanocyte-stimulating hormone produced by the placenta causes the darkening of the nipples. It also leads to the darkening of the line running down from the middle of your abdomen to your pubic bone.

4. Mood Swings and Depression

It is quite common to experience mood swings and depression during this trimester. Your body gets bigger, and you may become increasingly conscious of your bigger appearance.

5. Sleep Disturbance

You may find variations in your sleep pattern and could find yourself waking up in the middle of the night. Blame it on the change in your hormone levels.

6. Lack of Libido

Most women feel a sense of excitement and romance during the first trimester; however, they tend to lose interest in sex by the end of this time. It could be because of the fluctuation in hormone levels and changes in physical appearance that lead to self-consciousness.

Foetal Development During the Third Month of Pregnancy

Foetal Development During the Third Month of Pregnancy

What is your baby like when you’re third month pregnant? It would be too early to feel any particular movements, but you will feel and experience the baby’s presence in the womb. You are sure to be curious to know what is happening inside! The fetus at 3 months pregnant will be about 3.5 inches long, weighing approximately 0.04 kilos – the size of a ripe plum or lemon. The embryo gets settled inside the uterus, and the organs start their growth too.

Head Due to the development of the brain, the head will be slightly bigger than the body.
Skin The skin is transparent with the veins visible through it. The baby’s fingerprints are formed.
Eyelids The eyelids, in formation, protect the baby’s eyes by covering them entirely.
Mouth The baby’s tongue and larynx begin to develop; the jaws and the upper lip are also formed during this time.
Thumb The baby begins to suck the thumb and also starts getting hiccups.
Heart The heart develops, complete with a heartbeat, which can be heard using electronic monitoring devices.
Musculoskeletal system The muscle and bone structure of the baby is formed.
Movements Your baby will begin to kick, stretch, twist, and turn. However, since the uterus still lies over the pelvis, you may not feel all these movements.
Bone marrow The bone marrow begins the production of white blood cells to keep the baby healthy.
Intestine This organ begins to contract and relax to aid digestion.
Pancreas The pancreas starts to function and secrete insulin.
Kidneys The kidneys start the excretion of urine into the bladder.
Other parts Distinct fingers and toes along with fingernails and toenails are formed. The little hands can now open and close. The baby’s nose and ears will be seen on the scan. The neck will be formed during this time, along with the hair follicles and nipples.

If you are pregnant with twins, the growth in the 3rd month of pregnancy for the twin foetuses will be the same as above.

To-Do List for the Third Month of Pregnancy

A to-do list for the third month of your pregnancy will help you focus on your health and remain fit until the delivery.

1. Eat Healthily

You will have cravings, for sure! However, your pregnancy diet during the third month must consist of a wholesome, healthy, and balanced combination of fruits, vegetables, dairy products, meat, nuts, grains, rice, etc. Your diet should comprise the essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients required not just for your good health but also for your baby’s health.

2. Get Adequate Rest

Fatigue is very common. You must take the rest when you do not feel alright. Also, you can invest in some maternity pillows to rest comfortably.

3. Administer Supplements

Take folic acid supplements to avoid any birth defects and other vitamin supplements as advised by the doctor.

4. Maintain Cleanliness and Hygiene

You will be very prone to contracting infections at this stage, so make sure you follow proper hygiene and cleanliness standards for everything, from cooking to cleaning to gardening. Keep your vaginal area clean and dry as well. Ditch synthetic fabrics during this period and get your hands on cotton undies that will be comfortable and breathable.

5. Pay Attention to Your Dental Health

Schedule an appointment with the dentist as you may be prone to bleeding gums and aching teeth due to the changes in your hormone levels. It’s important to take great care of your gums during this period, as developing gum diseases can also affect the health of your developing baby.

6. Gain Knowledge About the Birthing Process

Enrol in childbirth education classes to cope with anxiety, stress, and other issues.

7. Communicate

A very crucial aspect, make sure you communicate enough with your partner, close friends or relatives about any issues or apprehensions that you have. It is important to take your loved ones into confidence to get some reassurance regarding your problems and avoid falling into depression.

8. Quit Smoking and Alcohol

Smoking and alcohol are strictly not recommended as they could prove detrimental to your baby’s health and could lead to a miscarriage.

9. Limit Your Intake of Caffeine

Cut down your intake of hot beverages like coffee and tea, as it increases the risk of suffering a miscarriage and can result in the baby’s low birth weight.

10. Exercise

Indulge in simple exercises like walking and swimming. Avoid sports that carry a risk of a fall or pressure on joints.

11. Stay Active

Try to keep yourself engaged in activities that will keep your mind engaged. Knit, paint or sketch to stay stress-free.

12. Attend Regular Prenatal Check-ups

Schedule and attend prenatal check-ups with your healthcare provider to monitor the progress of your pregnancy and address any concerns or questions you may have.

Stay Active during Pregnancy

Exercises You Can Do During the Third Month of Pregnancy

A few exercises to stay fit during the third month of pregnancy:

  • Morning Walk: It helps to beat fatigue and morning sickness. It refreshes you and increases blood flow in the body.
  • Swimming: This activity is highly recommended for pregnant women as a great form of exercise. It tones your muscles, stretches your ligaments, and increases blood circulation.
  • Pilates: This activity helps build strength and increases your flexibility.
  • Low-impact aerobics: This activity strengthens your heart, tones your muscles and relieves you of body pain.
  • Yoga: Performed under professional guidance, it could do wonders for you and your baby.

Precautions to Follow During the Third Month of Pregnancy

Here is a list of precautions you should consider:

  • Avoid lifting heavy objects and doing stressful activities that will pressure the womb.
  • Stay away from spicy, oily and fatty food to avoid digestion troubles.
  • Wear loose-fitting clothes and a comfortable bra.
  • Wear flat, comfortable footwear that does not put any kind of pressure on your feet or the back.
  • Quit smoking, alcohol and drugs entirely to ensure your baby’s good health.

What to Expect During Your Visit to the Ob/Gyn?

Your doctor will check the following:

  • Your health history and that of your parents.
  • Any previous medical conditions you’ve had.
  • Your weight and blood pressure.
  • The baby’s heartbeat, which would only be audible on the hand doppler after 10 to 12 weeks of pregnancy.
  • The size of your abdomen to approximate the size and fundal height of the uterus (which only starts to become palpable post the third month of pregnancy).
  • Blood and urine tests to assess your overall health and check for any underlying conditions or potential complications.
  • An ultrasound to visualize the developing fetus, confirm the due date, and check for any abnormalities.

Lab Tests

Some of the tests performed in the 3rd month of pregnancy are as follows:

1. Urine Test – To determine the levels of sugar and protein in the body and to check for any infection.

2. Blood Test – To detect your blood group and Rh factor to check for anaemia.

3. Fluid Retention Test  – To check if you have any swelling in the arms and legs.

4. First-trimester Screening Tests – An ultrasound is conducted to determine any risk to the fetus, screen for birth and genetic defects, and detect markers of chromosomal disorders.

5. Maternal Serum Screening Tests – A series of tests are conducted to assess whether you face the risk of giving birth to a baby with Down Syndrome, Edward Syndrome, or any neural tube defects.   

6. Chorionic Villus Sampling (CVS) – This diagnostic test is carried out on pregnant women who are at high risk for the conditions mentioned above. It is carried out during the 11-13 weeks of pregnancy to check whether the unborn child will have any congenital defects.

Ultrasound Scan

The Nuchal translucency (NT) scan is a 3-month pregnancy scan done to examine the amniotic fluid parameters, the position of the placenta in the uterus, and assess any risk of abnormality in the foetus.

Ultrasound Scan

5 Tips for the Dad-to-Be

Mommies, it’s not you alone who has to follow many tips and precautions during this period. Dads-to-be, you need to take up some responsibility as well. Here are some helpful tips to help you become a great partner and dad-to-be!

1. Help your partner with household chores to reduce her fatigue.

2. Support her by being there all the time as she might have no time left for social interactions.

3. Be supportive and understanding when she experiences her mood swings.

4. Talk to the baby to establish a bond.

5. Accompany her for all her doctor visits to know what is happening.


1. Is Detecting a Neural Tube Defect Possible During the 3rd Month of Pregnancy?

Spina bifida or neural tube defect is a congenital malformation that can be detected during the first trimester. An ultrasound scan can detect it more accurately during the second trimester.

2. How Much Weight Will I Gain by the Third Month of Pregnancy?

Since the baby is still small, you will gain about 1 or 2 kilos by the end of the first trimester. However, some women lose weight due to aversions of certain foods and morning sickness.

3. Can an Ultrasound Detect the Gender of the Baby by the Third Month?

The baby’s reproductive system is still developing at this point, so it will be difficult to determine the sex of the baby. The results will be about 75% accurate when done between 11-14 weeks of the gestation period.

4. Is It Safe to Color Your Hair at 3 Month Pregnancy?

Generally, using hair dye when you’re three months pregnant, is considered safe. However, it’s advisable to opt for ammonia-free and well-ventilated products to minimize potential risks. It’s best to consult with your healthcare provider for personalized advice.

5. Is It Normal to Have Stomach Pain at Three Months Pregnant?

Mild stomach pain can be normal during the third month of pregnancy and is often attributed to the stretching of ligaments and muscles as the uterus expands. However, persistent or severe pain should be discussed with your healthcare provider to rule out any potential issues and ensure the well-being of both you and the baby.

By the 12th week of your wife’s pregnancy, there is a good chance that even you’ll experience pregnancy symptoms – yes, it’s true! Known as couvade syndrome or sympathetic pregnancy, it’s a condition in which the partner experiences certain pregnancy symptoms such as nausea, abdominal pain, minor weight gain, and disturbed sleep. Now, don’t worry if you notice these symptoms. Indulge in the same home remedies your wife tries out to gain relief from these symptoms.

Moms-to-be, the third month is a crucial period for your pregnancy. You will no longer experience nausea and vomiting, but you will have more medical visits. It is definitely an exciting phase, and the changes in your body will certainly make you conscious that you have a little one growing inside you. Get ready to make the announcement officially!


1. A Partner’s Guide to Pregnancy FAQs; The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists; https://www.acog.org/womens-health/faqs/a-partners-guide-to-pregnancy

2. Fetal development: The 2nd trimester; Mayo Clinic; https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/fetal-development/art-20046151

3. Fetal development: The 1st trimester; Mayo Clinic; https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/pregnancy-week-by-week/in-depth/prenatal-care/art-20045302

4. Pregnancy Discomforts; Cleveland Clinic; https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/pregnancy-pains

5. Signs and symptoms of pregnancy; NHS UK; https://www.nhs.uk/pregnancy/trying-for-a-baby/signs-and-symptoms-of-pregnancy/

6. Stages of Fetal Development – First Trimester; Louisiana Department of Health; https://ldh.la.gov/page/stages-of-fetal-development-first-trimester

7. Masihi. S, Barati. M, Marfu. J, Eskandari. Z; Detection of neural tube defect in the first and second trimester of pregnancy by ultrasound in Imam Hospital, Ahwaz between December 2008-2010 (Iranian Journal of Reproductive Medicine); National Library of Medicine; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4169848/; November 2012

Also Read: 

2nd Month of Pregnancy
Third Month Pregnancy Diet
Four Month of Pregnancy Symptoms

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