You are 25 weeks pregnant or in your 26th week of pregnancy (counting from the first day of your Last Menstrual Period). This is the last week of your second trimester.
Keep in mind that this information is approximate. Each pregnancy is different and growth rates vary. For variations and details, please talk to your doctor.
What’s happening to the baby?
- Now, the baby more or less resembles how he will look once born. Except he is smaller, thinner and will be growing a lot in the next few weeks. All the organs are developed. The lungs, liver and the brain will continue to mature.
- By now, the baby is very active and moving and kicking a lot. All these movements are strengthening the baby’s muscles. The baby also hiccups a lot, as this helps the lungs to mature.
- The baby’s response to different sounds is more consistent because the baby’s nerve pathways to the brain have now completed developing. The baby might be able to differentiate between your voice or your spouse’s voice. But the hearing is still muffled because the ears will be covered with vernix (the cheesy white substance that protects the skin from the amniotic fluid) until birth.
- More hair has appeared on the baby's head.
- Your baby is about 22 centimetres long (Crown to rump length) and weighs about 700 grams.
What’s happening to mom?
- You are almost through two out of three trimesters. It won't be long before you little bundle of joy is born.
- You will start feeling the baby’s movements distinctly. An active baby is a healthy baby and that is why around this time, many doctors ask you for the frequency and pattern of your baby’s movements during the appointments. Observe the pattern of your baby’s movements and in case you notice a change in the pattern of movements and a significant decline in the baby’s movements, call your doctor immediately. Your baby might be in distress and there can be risks of being stillborn. The doctor will examine you, hear the baby’s breathing and even do a non-stress test (The doctor will measure the response of the baby’s heart rate to each movement the baby makes as reported by the mother or observed by the doctor on an ultrasound screen).
- You can also detect the baby’s sleep patterns. The baby will sleep more when you are active (your movements lull the baby to sleep) and more active when you lie down.
- The expanding uterus can cause constipation. Remember to drink lots of water and other fluids (remember tea and coffee do not count) and eat foods rich in fibre.
Checklist for mom
- Remember to make the baby listen to soothing music. It is good for you both. Experiment with different kinds of music that you fancy. Also try Indian classical (it can be anything that appeals to you or there are many CDs made specially for pregnant women and their babies) or western classical (Mozart and Vivaldi’s Four Seasons are hot favourites of pregnant moms).
- If you have not already, you might be going for the glucose screening test this week. This is a preliminary test that is given to all pregnant women sometime during the 24th to 28th weeks of pregnancy to check for gestational diabetes. It measures how well your body can process sugar. Indian women, in particular, are highly susceptible to gestational diabetes.
- See a dietician if you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes. You will be put on a special diet (low carbohydrate and sugar). Most cases can be managed by diet but in some cases, women might need to take insulin.
- At your next appointment, remember to discuss the baby’s movement patterns. A moving baby is a healthy baby. But there are many reasons you might not be able to detect the baby’s movements (eg., baby’s sleep pattern, you may confuse it with other digestive movements etc.)
Ideas for dad
- Pamper mom with a small gesture or a gift. For example: a gift coupon for a manicure, pedicure, a massage etc., from her favourite beauty parlour or spa. You could get adventurous and even try and give her a massage or a pedicure yourself. Be creative and remember that these small gestures can really pep her up as she starts to get uncomfortable.
- Are you making mom and the baby listen to soothing music? It is good for mom, baby and even you. Experiment with different kinds of music that you fancy. Also try Indian classical (it can be anything that appeals to you or there are many CDs made specially for pregnant women and their babies) or western classical (Mozart and Vivaldi’s Four Seasons are hot favourites of pregnant moms).
- Tip: For constipation, try having fruits that have the letter “p” in them: plums, apricots, pears and of course prunes. Also, avoid white bread. Take whole grain bread instead. Read Parentree's article on whole grain bread.
- Learn more about various parenting styles
- Read “Our Babies, Ourselves” by Meredith F. Small. The author examines how different cultures (African, American, Chinese, Indian etc.) have different ways to bring up a child. Although it is biased towards our traditional Indian parenting style (breastfeeding, baby massages, being close to the baby etc.), it highlights that no parenting style is 'right' or “wrong” and it is appropriate or inappropriate only according to the culture. It combines paediatrics, anthropology and child development and provides great insights for parenting.
Useful Parentree articles for this stage of pregnancy