Discover what happens when you reach week 26 of your pregnancy…
At 26 weeks pregnant, you will probably feel your baby move in different ways, as the space in your uterus is getting more crowded by the day. In fact, the somersaults and turns will now become a more solid kick. In addition, you will also feel a foot or perhaps an elbow poking out of your belly. This stage of your pregnancy definitely offers a new set of experience for you and your baby.
Mom at 26 weeks pregnant
You are now 26 weeks pregnant and your uterus is already two and a half inches above your navel. Your belly button will become larger in size as it protrudes to accommodate your growing uterus. Your belly button, however, should revert back to its normal position after giving birth.
Insomnia and sleep disruptions
At 26 weeks pregnant, you will probably experience insomnia due to several pregnancy symptoms occurring at night which disrupt your sleep. For instance, you may be experiencing heartburn, leg cramps and frequent urination when you go to sleep at night. With all these symptoms, you will definitely have trouble calming down and drifting off to sleep. To help alleviate insomnia, you can adhere to a daytime exercise routine, decrease your fluid intake before bedtime and get a daily dose of fresh air.
Bloating and gas
Since your expanding uterus continues to place pressure on your intestines and your stomach, you will feel bloated most of the time when you are pregnant. To resolve this problem, you should eat small frequent meals every day instead of eating full meals three times a day. You should avoid overloading your digestive system.
Increased vaginal discharge
Increased vaginal discharge is still common when you reach the 26th week of your pregnancy. The discharges will help protect the vaginal canal from infection. You can keep it clean and odor free down there by taking a bath frequently and wearing panty liners.
Migraines and pregnancy brain
Some women who have history of migraines will more likely experience them often when they are pregnant. If you have had experience with migraines before, you should not be surprised if you will experience more migraines these days. Since strong medications are off limits for you for now, you can consider holistic approaches in dealing with your migraines. You can ask your health care provider about this and he or she may recommend acupuncture, massage, biofeedback, yoga, meditation, and massage. These techniques do not only reduce stress but also teach you how to counter the migraine when it strikes.
Aside from migraines, you will also experience a case of pregnancy brain. This is a temporary decrease in memory normally experienced by pregnant women. To address this symptom, you can try writing important things down in a notepad so you will not forget things.
You will also notice increased incidences of clumsiness. This is due to loosened joints, extra weight and shifted center of gravity. This is temporary. However, you should be careful when you are walking on slippery surfaces.
Round ligament pain
Round ligament pain will be experienced more at week 26 of your pregnancy. This is caused by the expanding uterus. If you are feeling the pain more than usual these days, you should get off your feet and get comfortable as much as possible. You should also shift positions to ensure that the pain will not worsen.
Increased blood pressure and preeclampsia
At 26 weeks pregnant, your blood pressure may increase slightly, even though it is still lower compared to your blood pressure before you became pregnant. Typically, blood pressure of pregnant women falls toward the end of the first three months of the pregnancy. Consequently, it tends to reach a low at week 22 to 24.
However, there are instances when a pregnant woman will have an increased blood pressure reading. This condition is often called preeclampsia. This is a serious condition that often shows up after week 37. However, this can also happen earlier. Thus, it is important to be aware of the warning signs like swelling of the hands, feet, ankles, and face, rapid weight gain, persistent headache, blurred vision, vomiting, and intense pain or tenderness on your upper abdomen. When these symptoms are observed, you should seek medical consult right away to make sure that you and your baby are safe. Interventions to resolve the sudden increase in your blood pressure will be initiated. However, if the blood pressure is not controlled, an emergency cesarean section may be indicated depending on the severity of the condition.
Irritated eyes and blurred vision
Since pregnancy hormones decrease tear production, your eyes will likely become irritated especially when you enter the second trimester of your pregnancy. With less lubrication, your eyes can dry up and become irritated. To ease the discomfort associated with this pregnancy change, you can make use of eye drops. However, if you are experiencing serious vision problems, you should seek consult right away, as this may be a sign that you are developing gestational diabetes or preeclampsia.
Growth and development of your baby at 26 weeks pregnant
Your baby at week 26 weighs about two pounds and he or she will measure about nine inches long. Since your baby is growing, he or she will soon feel cramped inside your uterus. You should not worry about this as your baby still has plenty of room to grow. This only means that there will be less room for your baby to turn and do somersaults.
At week 26, your baby’s eyes will start to open but their vision will be underdeveloped. This means that your baby will be able to see what is going on now. You can shine a flashlight on your belly and see how your baby responds. Your baby might kick in response to the light. At this time, the iris which is the colored part of your baby’s eyes does not have pigment. You will still not be able to determine the color of your baby’s eyes.