Round like a basketball!
While 26 weeks pregnant your uterus is about the size of a basketball. On average you’ll have gained around 15 to 22 lbs by this point, but don’t start worrying if your weight gain is under or over this now. The old rule still applies: every woman’s pregnancy is unique. Pregnancy symptoms will continue to be part of your everyday life, although by now you should be feeling less ligament pain from the stretching of your uterus.
Sore back getting you down?
Although some pregnancy symptoms are abating and disappearing it seems there’s always something new just around the corner! While 26 weeks pregnant your uterus may be starting to push against the sciatic nerve. This can send shooting pain up into your lower back and into your legs and buttocks, especially on the right hand side of your body. If your baby likes to spend time near your back you may feel even more of sciatic discomfort. Yes, you can blame these pregnancy symptoms on your baby! At this time in your pregnancy you want to be as comfortable as possible so applying a bit of cold or heat compresses to these affected areas can offer some relief. If you’re spending a lot of time sitting, standing, or walking, make yourself take a lot of breaks! Relax as much as you can to take the stress away from all those pregnancy symptoms you’re going through.
Oh, will all these miserable pregnancy symptoms never end? Along with everything else, many pregnant women (about 50%) while 26 weeks pregnant find they have a problem with hemorrhoids. Hopefully hemorrhoids won’t be a part of your pregnancy but if you do find them part of your pregnancy symptoms there are a few things you can do to either prevent more of them or avoid them altogether. Make sure you don’t become constipated, stay well hydrated. Constipation can cause hemorrhoids and inflame them if you already have them. Instead of waiting to go to the bathroom, make sure you go when you need to. If you have hemorrhoids you can take regular baths for comfort and to relieve any pain or itchiness. At this stage in your pregnancy you won’t be able to take medicated ointments. You can however use witch hazel, a natural remedy, to ease the inflammation. Hemorrhoids or not, don’t let it get you down at this point in your pregnancy!
Boy or girl?
By now in your pregnancy, if you haven’t already told family and friends the gender of your baby they have most likely been guessing if it’s a boy or a girl by the way you’re “carrying”. The old wives tale is that if your baby bump is high up in your belly, it’s a girl. And if the baby bump is lower, it’s a boy. If at this time in your pregnancy you’ve been keeping the gender of your baby a secret, or if you don’t know yourself, it can be fun to play the guessing game!
Listen to the heartbeat!
While 26 weeks pregnant your little baby is making his or her presence well known to you! Your baby will often react to you or your partner’s voice. And if your partner places an ear on your stomach they may be able to hear your baby’s heartbeat! If you can’t hear his or her heartbeat at this point of your pregnancy, keep trying! Every day, as you deal with those pregnancy symptoms you dislike so much your baby is getting stronger and stronger. Encourage your partner to sit with their hand on your belly. This way you can both feel baby moving around, letting you know that he or she is there! All those pregnancy symptoms will be worth it!
Bonding with baby…
At this time in your pregnancy both you and your partner should be bonding with your baby whenever you can. What better way to forget all those pregnancy symptoms than by sitting and talking quietly to your baby. Remember, at this stage of your pregnancy your baby’s hearing is very acute. Both you and your partner, and any other members of your family, should be reading, talking, and singing to your baby. Your voices will become very familiar while he or she is in the womb. When your baby arrives, these very same voices will be a great comfort to him or her. Bonding with your baby at this time is also a great way for you to get closer to your partner, especially if they’ve been taking the brunt of you complaining about all those pregnancy symptoms!