In the second trimester, if you start to develop complications, your doctor may put you on bed rest. Although the research on bed rest is conflicting ““ not everyone agrees that it actually prevents preterm birth ““ healthcare providers still prescribe bed rest to women experiencing complications. Your doctor may recommend modified bed rest, in which you are allowed to stay in a sitting position on your bed, couch or favorite chair. You would not be allowed to have sex, exercise, or lift anything. Sometimes, if your situation is very complicated, you may be asked to always be lying down. You can get up for meals, to go to the bathroom, or take a quick shower.
Regardless of what kind of bed rest that your doctor prescribes, it’s a good idea that you perform leg exercises to keep your blood circulating and to prevent blood clots. (Pregnant women are at higher risk of getting blood clots.) You may want to rotate your ankles or raise them up sometimes. Ask your doctor for his or her suggestions.
How to Prepare for Birth in the Third Trimester
When you’re pregnant with multiples, you are at high risk of going into preterm labor. According to the March of Dimes, roughly 60 percent of twins, over 90 percent of triplets, and almost all quadruplets and high order multiples will be born early ““ before 37 weeks of gestation (when you’re full-term). Because of this high statistic, it’s very important that women carrying multiples take it easy in the late second and third trimester.
You will want to refrain from any type of exercise in the last months of your pregnancy. In the third trimester, you will have frequent visits to the doctor to monitor your pregnancy. The March of Dimes recommends that women who are carrying multiples reduce your activity load between 20 and 24 weeks of pregnancy. It may be smart to limit your activities sooner than this, especially if you’re pregnant with more than two babies.
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