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26 weeks pregnant - all you need to know

If you could see your baby, you might notice their eyelids open. They’ll soon be blinking.

Week 26 infographic.

What does my baby look like in week 26?

Their eye colour at this stage is very likely to be blue. Sometime after they're born, your baby’s eyes will become the colour they will stay.

Your baby is around 35cm long from the top of their head to their heels, which is nearly the length of your forearm - though they're is curled up in the womb. They're about the length of a courgette now.

Your uterus is still pretty roomy and you’ve probably been feeling baby move around vigorously.

Over the next couple of months your baby will be putting on more fat and muscle, and start to look a little less wrinkly and skinny and more like a little cherub.

Your pregnancy symptoms in week 26

Leg cramps waking you up?

No one knows for certain why pregnant mums are prone to cramp, especially during the night, but regular gentle ankle and calf exercises may prevent it from happening.

Try our easy pregnancy workout at home.

Are you suffering from cramps, headaches, swollen feet or indigestion?

Here’s our guide to 10 common pregnancy complaints (and how to avoid them).

What to do in week 26

Maternity Allowance

If you’re entitled to Maternity Allowance, you can claim it from when you’re 26 weeks pregnant and it can be paid from 29 weeks of pregnancy. You'll need a MA1 claim form, which you can download here.

“Even though I was self-employed, I was able to claim Maternity Allowance. It made a big difference to us. Don’t assume you’re not entitled to maternity pay - do some research.” Anja, mum of two

Breakfast ideas

Breakfast is a prime time to get good food into you and your baby, such as B vitamins, folate, calcium and vitamin C.

Here are 5 healthy breakfast ideas.

It’s good to walk

Even if you didn’t exercise before pregnancy, this is a great time to start, and walking is the perfect activity to start with.

You can do it whenever it suits you and you don’t need any special kit. If possible incorporate it into your daily routine - the commute to work, the school run or a daily lunchtime walk for example.

A brisk, mile-long walk (1.6 kilometres) three times a week can help keep you feeling fit.

Antenatal classes

If you haven't already booked antenatal classes, make sure you ask your midwife now. They get booked up quickly so don't miss out.

Your hospital might offer free parentcraft or antenatal classes for you and your partner.

Find out more about how active you should be during your pregnancy.


Lennart Nilsson (2009) A Child is Born, Jonathan Cape

NICE (2008) Antenatal care for uncomplicated pregnancies,Clinical guideline [CG62] Last updated: January 2017.

Kumar A, Srivasvata AK, Verma AK (2010) Estimation of stature by percutaneous measurements of distal half of upper limb (forearm & hand), Journal of Indian Academy of Forensic Medicine 32(4): 325–8.

NHS Choices. Leg cramps, : (Page last reviewed: 17/11/2017 Next review due: 17/11/2020).

GOV.UK. Maternity Allowance, [accessed 28/06/2018].

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    Last reviewed on June 28th, 2018. Next review date June 28th, 2021.

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    Please note that these comments are monitored but not answered by Tommy’s. Please call your GP or maternity unit if you have concerns about your health or your baby’s health.
    • By Loveth (not verified) on 2 Apr 2020 - 12:38

      Hey am pregrant close to week 26 now
      My tummy is not showing like a pregrancy woman should be
      I went to the hospital BT when I consulted a test, it's was negative
      BT I can feel my baby inside me
      I can feel something moving inside ND I can feel baby's heart beat close to my abdomen..
      All the information am receiving from Tommy is exactly what am feeling inside
      Please am really scared and I need advice.

    • By Ester (not verified) on 3 Mar 2020 - 12:37

      Is it normal to the to move nearby my abnomial

    • By Midwife @Tommys on 10 May 2018 - 14:06

      Hi Nicolette
      You're likely to feel warmer than usual during pregnancy. This is due to hormonal changes and an increase in blood supply to the skin. You're also likely to sweat more.
      It can help if you wear loose clothing made of natural fibers, as these are more absorbent and breathable than synthetic fibers. You should also try to keep your room cool – you could use an electric fan and wash frequently (with cool water if you prefer)to help you feel fresh.
      Take care of yourself and i hope you can keep cool in the warm weather
      All the best
      Sophie,Tommy's Midwife

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