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For a woman who is carrying twins at 26 weeks of gestation, this juncture can feel quite strange as well as the start of something unnerving. Not only are the physical changes rapidly setting in within the uterus as well as in your body, but the hormonal changes would also be pretty surprising. All of these can affect your moods and cause emotional upheavals in overwhelming times. With the third trimester soon approaching for you, it is essential to know that these are all steps in the natural progression of a pregnancy. Similarly, some careful steps need to be undertaken to ensure that your body and the babies are in the pink of health, without any unforeseen issues that might crop up later on.
The Growth of the Babies at 26 Weeks
Similar to how the babies were coming to terms with different physical realities of their own body, the 26th week of pregnancy with twins or triplets will continue to be similar on that front. Most babies begin to take the initiative of opening their eyes around this time, though they can’t make any sense of where they are or what they are saying. Throughout the journey up until now, the eyelids have been fused together to keep the eyes from developing without any hindrances. Once the retina is created correctly, the eyes can now sense the presence or absence of light and begin to look around without any problems.
Within the babies, a lot of complex changes are taking place, all of which play a crucial part in turning your little ones into unique individuals of their own volition. While the brain development begins pretty early in the pregnancy cycle, their further development is still in its progress and it also kicks into high gear around this week. The folds or wrinkles that we instantly identify a brain with, begin to appear in your babies’ brains, bringing them another step closer to being a fully functional human being. The skin development takes its time and it may not have the thickness that should work as of yet. The fat deposits continue to take place at a rapid pace and, even though the lining over their bodies might not be thick, it isn’t as transparent as it used to be earlier.
The eyebrows on the little faces would start being visible by now, as well as the hair structure would begin to have a semblance of a proper hairline. While most babies tend to shed their hair, which becomes a part of the vernix covering the babies, some babies might do it at this stage while a few others might continue to have it even after birth. Rest assured, that isn’t a problem to be worried about since babies can even shed their hair after they are outside the womb.
What is the Size of the Babies?
The weight of the little ones continues to surge ahead at a surprising pace. When looking at women who are pregnant with a single child, the baby in the womb is nearly as heavy as 750 grams, with a length that might be approximately 36 centimetres or so. Using this as a benchmark, you can look at your triplets or twins to be a notch lower than these values. However, their size would now roughly be as large as a spring onion and, pretty soon, they all would be jostling for space inside your womb.
Common Bodily Changes
The changes that the body undergoes in this particular week of pregnancy is intensely physical since the babies are growing up to be independent human beings in their own right, all within you.
- No matter how much your body tries its best to adapt to the rapid changes taking place inside you, there will always be instances that might leave certain areas unprepared. At times, certain activities of the body can even work against it resulting in various issues. A common occurrence is the tendency to find your joints with a lower strength or tactility than before. Blame it on your hormones yet again, especially a pretty potent one called relaxin, which works directly in loosening these joints to allow the body to expand quickly. The result, however, can make you feel like a bony structure that is barely being held together in place. At times, certain joints might feel like they have popped out of place and left your body wholly misaligned.
- If your bones and joints are struggling to keep their arrangement as it is, the uterus is posing a different set of problems for you all by itself. With the children growing rapidly within you, the position of the uterus begins to adjust itself within the body. This can, at times, put the babies in such a place that their weight or activities can apply pressure on specific areas of the body. These are different from the kicks and flutters you feel and enjoy. If your baby’s butt or head begins to push in a particular region, such as the pelvis, it can cause a nerve to be stuck under it and send it out sharp pains majorly termed as sciatica. Not only does it make the area numb but it can result in a sensation that is quite discomforting. This gets quite irritating when you are already coming to terms with a backache the pregnancy is causing you.
- There’s a reason why it is recommended that pregnant women invest in clothes that are a size or more higher than what fits them presently. The tummy will make you feel like it has grown overnight, and one fine morning, you would suddenly realise that you can’t walk the same way you used to. The constantly shifting centre of gravity within your body will make it necessary to relearn your gait and sense of balance quite frequently throughout your pregnancy. It is highly essential to keep yourself supported at all times when you are navigating around.
Symptoms of Twin Pregnancy at 26 Weeks
Remember most of the troublesome symptoms that you had in the previous weeks of the second trimester? Well, they will make a return this time around yet again, in varying intensities.
- Don’t let the sudden pains and contractions fool you into believing that you have a premature delivery. Most of the ones that occur lightly and fade away when you move around are the Braxton Hicks contractions, as a result of your body’s pregnancy drill. Unless they continue for more than a minute and repeat frequently, you’re all good.
- Fluid retention and boosted blood circulation will rarely leave you with any part of the body that isn’t swollen beyond its usual size. Fingers, hands, feet, legs, breasts, and even your face might seem larger than usual, which can get a tad annoying over the week. Accept it as a reality and move on, unless the swelling starts hurting you tremendously.
- With a body that is metamorphosing every second and a bladder that fails to live up to its part, your insomnia might return as a result of it. Many women have trouble sleeping on the side or suffer from the effects of hormones keeping them awake at night.
- The 26th week is also a time when you would step outside your house to get something and lose track of what you wanted to get. These tiny forgetful incidents will make a comeback as your body is busy figuring out rest of the changes taking place within it.
Twin Pregnancy – Belly at 26 Weeks
Say hello to your lovely tummy that is getting more and more close to the typical pregnant one you’ve always wanted. Well, it does come with a free backache so you can’t complain about it.
One of the key aspects that can help you get through this is having strong abdominal muscles that can hold your belly in place. The abs pretty much separate in two portions, which doesn’t allow them to support your core as much as they could earlier. With a core strength that is at a pretty good level, your backache can take a break.
Twin Pregnancy at 26 Weeks – Ultrasound
Again, your doctor won’t ask you to have an ultrasound scan at this stage, since one would be needed when the third trimester begins. The scans will be more frequent after that.
Anyway, all your babies are usually doing around this time is swallowing the amniotic fluid, peeing it back out, and taking it back in. As disgusting as that might sound, it is the very thing that prepares their body to function correctly.
What to Eat
A fully balanced diet should be the only thing on your mind at this moment. Keep away any food items that might trigger an allergy. Drinking fluids and maintaining a good water content in your body can keep other issues at bay, too.
Pregnancy Care Tips
Keep a bunch of simple tips in mind to take care of yourself effectively.
- Indulge in long conversations with your babies regularly
- Have a discussion with your doctor regarding the delivery
- Gorging on fried foods and confectionaries should be strictly avoided
- Avoid standing for long hours as it can make the swelling in your legs worsen
What You Need to Shop for
A bunch of simple items can make your pregnancy week simpler, such as:
- Baby monitors or a foetal Doppler
- Mattress for the baby’s cradle
- Calm music records
When 26 weeks pregnant with twins, foetal development can catch her off-guard with the rapid increase in weight and the changes it puts her through. Don’t be afraid of having honest conversations with your partner regarding things that can make your journey more comfortable for you.