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Week 26

How Big is the Baby at 26 Weeks Pregnant?

Your baby has put on quite a bit of weight by pregnancy week 26 and is now a whopping 2 pounds (almost). Your baby's crown-to-rump length is about 9-10 inches long, and her total length is about 12 inches during pregnancy 26 weeks! Your baby is now starting to add a little fat to her bones, though she won't start accumulating too much fat until the last few weeks of pregnancy.

Your Baby's Growth and Development

Your baby's heart continues to grow and develop during pregnancy at 26 weeks. You may even be able to hear your baby's heart beat through a traditional stethoscope placed on your stomach by 26 weeks pregnant. Don't get too excited though, some women can go their entire pregnancy without being able to locate their baby's heartbeat using a stethoscope. The Doppler is a much more effective and efficient way of measuring your baby's heartbeat throughout pregnancy.

In addition to organ maturation throughout the body, your baby's nerve pathways in her ears continue to develop during pregnancy 26 weeks which will allow your baby to respond to sounds more consistently. You might notice your baby jumping more often now to loud noises when you are 26 weeks pregnant. This is a good time to start playing some relaxing music to your little one when you have the chance. Some parents even enjoy reading to their babies during this time. If you haven't considered it, have your partner read to your belly. This will help your baby become more acclimated to the sound of your partner's voice. Believe it or not, one of the first things babies recognize outside the womb besides smell is the sound of your voice, and your partner's voice.

Your baby will continue breathing in amniotic fluid after twenty six weeks pregnant and beyond. Boy babies usually experience a bit of growth during this week, as their testicles begin to descend into the scrotum. This process typically takes between two and three days to complete.

Your Growth and Development

Your uterus should now be about 2 and a half inches above your belly button. Your uterus will continue growing at a rate of about 1 centimeter each week as you continue your pregnancy week by week. You have probably put on some weight at this point in time, up to 23 pounds for some women. Your weight may fluctuate from day to day due to water retention so try not to weight yourself every day if you can avoid it, as this could prove discouraging during your pregnancy.

Changes in You

You are probably starting to experience more discomfort including pressure and back pain as your belly continues to grow larger. Leg cramps may be common. Be sure to stretch out your legs as much as possible and eat a nutritious diet to ensure your body is receiving the nutrients it needs to keep up with your baby's development. Stretching is particularly important if you plan on doing any type of exercise. Remember that your added girth and changes in hormones in your body will change the way your body responds to exercise. You want to take great care to make sure you do not injure yourself. One way to prevent this is through routine stretching.

Headaches may start to come on more frequently at this time in pregnancy as your hormones continue to change as you approach the end of your second trimester. Usually you can take some Tylenol to help relieve the pain of headaches you are experiencing. If your headaches are severe or you are experiencing frequent migraines, talk with your healthcare provider about any possible treatment options.

Some women might start complaining of pain or discomfort around their ribs or in their lower abdomen. Your little one is getting stronger, and her strength combined with the growing size of your uterus pressing against your organs may cause you to have some discomfort. It isn't uncommon to feel a sharp or stabbing pain or pressure under your ribs as the baby moves. It may help to switch positions or lie down when you feel this pain or discomfort. This might help your little one settle in for a bit or change positions.

You may start having a slight increase in blood pressure at this point in pregnancy. Blood pressure is typically lower between weeks 22 and weeks 24 and then rises slightly at this point in pregnancy.














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