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Week 26

Support and information from NCT

NCT offers reliable support and information about the various stages of pregnancy, week by week.

Your developing baby

You’re now 26 weeks pregnant and your baby is growing fast. They've grown by almost a centimetre since last week! 

They now have distinct toenails, finger prints and eyelashes.

Week 26

Packing your hospital bag

If you have decided to have your baby at a hospital, birth centre or anywhere else outside your home, why not start thinking about your hospital bag contents so that you'll be ready to go when labour starts. Give plenty of thought to what you may need and ask around among friends who’ve had babies. 

This list could include something loose and comfortable to wear during labour and for after the birth. You may also want to include maternity pads, five or six pairs of pants, slippers, tissues, lip balm and music. You will also need to take things for your baby such as nappies and something to dress your baby in once they’re born.

Keeping fit

Swimming during pregnancy is particularly good as water supports your bump and is great for your circulation and reducing any swelling. It’s also an excellent way to maintain your abdominal tone. Take care not to overwork these muscles with strong rotational movements, particularly in deeper water. 

And you don’t even have to be a swimmer to enjoy the benefits of water – contact your local pool to find out about water-based classes with pregnancy exercises included.

Whooping cough

The government recommends a whooping cough vaccination for women between 16 and 32 weeks of pregnancy. This can help protect you and your baby from serious disease as protective antibodies are passed from mum to their unborn baby. 

Whooping cough can infect anyone, but it is babies during their first few months of life who are most vulnerable.


Has your partner informed their work of their plans to take paternity leave?

Dads-to-be must inform their employer by this week. 

Further information

NCT offers reliable support and information about the various stages of pregnancy, week by week. Our support line offers practical and emotional support in many areas of pregnancy, birth and early parenthood: 0300 330 0700.

We also offer antenatal courses which are a great way to find out more about birth, labour and life with a new baby.

Make friends with other parents-to-be and new parents in your local area for support and friendship by seeing what NCT activities are happening nearby.

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Week 26

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In-person NCT Antenatal course

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NCT Antenatal refresher course

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