Your baby this week
26 weeks pregnant

Your baby now

Your baby's lungs are beginning to manufacture a substance called surfactant -- necessary for your baby to breathe on his own. It prevents the tiny lung sacs, alveoli, from collapsing after each breath and allows them to refill with air.

fetal development

How does your baby grow? See a fetal development video!


First, second, third

Birth order has been credited and blamed for the successes and failures of many. Does birth order affect personality and behavior? Moms and some experts say yes.

Happy kids

Marcie Seither has six children ranging in age from 9 to 23 -- “I had one in potty training and one in driver’s training at the same time” -- and is absolutely convinced that birth order affects behavior. 

According to Seither, birth order is predictable but can be affected by the number of years between children. “Birth order traits start again if there is a gap of about five years between siblings,” suggests Seither. “We have two oldest, two middles and two babies, and they look and act just like their counterpart.”

Read more: How birth order affects personality and behavior


Pregnant woman and husband

Bump it up

From stretch marks to navel piercings to bump-related art projects, here are articles offering you some info about -- and things to do to memorialize -- your burgeoning belly (aka "bump")!


A little play time

Is it okay to use sex toys (like a vibrator) during pregnancy?

Using a sex toy in pregnancy is somewhat controversial, no doubt because no one has ever conducted a scientific study to establish safety. What experts do agree on is this: orgasms, even powerful vibrator-induced ones, are safe for most pregnant women.

The exceptions are women with conditions that increase the risk of premature delivery and/or infection, such as pre-term labor, premature rupture of membranes and bleeding. If you have anything but a normal pregnancy, or any history of problems in previous pregnancies, ask your doctor or midwife if sex is okay. If you aren't absolutely clear that he or she means it's okay to climax, ask.

Get more details here!


message boards

Want to talk? Meet other expectant moms on the Pregnancy & Baby message boards!


Depressed?

During the first year after the birth of their babies, about 10% to 15% of mothers suffer from postpartum depression (PPD), a disorder that requires treatment because it can have serious consequences for not only the mother, but also the infant and the rest of the family.

Moms should not feel ashamed of being depressed because PPD is directly related to hormone imbalances and it is not something a woman can simply "snap out of." Some health care providers may dismiss a mom's concerns as the normal exhaustion experienced when taking care of a newborn. Women and their loved ones should seek support from a health care provider who will take their feelings seriously. Click here for more information about postpartum depression.

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