Pregnancy Week 26

How big is yourbaby?
Your growing baby now measures around 14.02 inches (35.6cm) and weighs about 1.68 pounds (760g).

How big are you?
Your uterus is about 2.36 inches (6cm) above your bellybutton or about 10.23inches (26cm) from your pubic symphysis. In the second half of your pregnancy youwill be growing nearly 0.39inches (1cm) each week and if you have been followinga balanced, nutritious meal plan you would have put on a total of between 16 and22 pounds (7.2 and 9.9kg).

How is your baby developing and growing
Your babynow has some sort of sleeping pattern. You may find that at certain times of theday he/she is more active than other times. All his/her five senses will now befully developed.

You should by now have also heard your baby’s heartbeat on several visits to yourhealthcare provider and hearing your baby’s heart beating strong is always reassuringbut you may be concerned if you hear a skipped beat. This is not unusual and iscalled an arrhythmia. An arrhythmia may occur as the heart is growing and developingbut will disappear as it matures.

If arrhythmia is detected before labor you may require fetal heart-monitoring during labor, but if it isonly detected whilst in labor it may be advisable to have a paediatrician present at the time of delivery to make sure the baby is fineor if a problem may occur, to treat straight away.

This Week with Dr Miriam Stoppard

Changes In You
As your uterus, placentaand baby get bigger, so do you. Back pain, headaches,leg cramps and pressure in your pelvis may be becoming more frequent now. You can findsolutions to some commonsecond trimester complications that may make some of these discomforts alittle easier to endure.

As you approach the end of your second trimester, two-thirds of your pregnancy isalmost behind you and it won’t be long now till your newborn is to arrive.

Your Nutrition
Eating fish is particularly good for you during pregnancy.It has been proven that women who ate a variety of fish during pregnancy carriedfor longer, resulting in a healthier birth weight of their baby. It has also beenstudied that eating fish reduces the risk of premature labor due to the omega-3fatty acids that cause a hormonal response to protect you from pre-term labor.

Omega-3 fatty acidsalso help to lower your risk of pregnancy-induced hypertensionand pre-eclampsia. Although fish is high in vitaminB, iron, zinc, selenium and copper you should also stay away from raw fish, whichcontains bacteria, parasites, viruses and toxins.

Raw fish or shellfish, if contaminated, can cause gastroenteritis, cholera or hepatitis-A.It is better advised that you should avoid all raw fish duringpregnancy.

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Pregnancy Week 26