What Changes Should I Expect During My Second Pregnancy?

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Do Second Pregnancies Have Medical Differences?

There are a few medical statistics about second pregnancies, and your doctor or midwife will talk with you about those. If you had certain complications such as pre-eclampsia in your first pregnancy, your doctor will be closely watching for those the second time around. However, if your first pregnancy was relatively uncomplicated, the risk of complications overall tends to be lower during a second pregnancy. Additionally, the risk of an early miscarriage falls significantly during second and subsequent pregnancies. If you had a C-section the first time, then you will be discussing with your doctor which type of delivery is advisable for the second birth.

Will I Feel Different During My Second Pregnancy?

Probably. Each pregnancy is unique, but the majority of women find that second pregnancies have the following characteristics:

  • You may feel more tired. This is most likely due to the fact that you have a child to take care of this time while you’re pregnant, so the chances for rest are fewer.
  • You may feel the baby kick earlier. Or you might simply recognize the sensation sooner, because this time you know what that little fluttering feeling is.
  • You may gain more weight or get big sooner.  This is something that many women report, and there’s no point in becoming too concerned about statistics. Just focus on making sure everything you eat is super-nutritious, and your body will do the right thing. And you already have maternity clothes from the first time around, so at least you’ll have some extra clothing choices.
  • You may feel more Braxton-Hicks contractions. Your body recognizes what’s happening this time, and most women report that there are more of those painless “practice” contractions in their second pregnancy.
  • If you had nuisance symptoms the first time, such as varicose veins, nausea or slightly unreliable bladder control, these may reappear. If they do, though, you’ll be better at coping with them. Remember to keep dry crackers on your bedside table and work on those Kegel exercises!
  • Your back and pelvic joints may ache more. Repeated pregnancy puts a strain on your body’s architecture, so you’ll want to choose furniture that supports your back and remember to lift carefully, using your legs to push upwards.

Are Second Births Different?

Since your cervix and uterus have already undergone the birth process once, they expand more easily the second time. This makes second labors statistically only half as long as first labors, but you can’t absolutely rely on those statistics; each individual birth is a different journey.

What About Emotions?

You’ll definitely experience a different set of emotions when you’re pregnant with your second child, and it’s important to realize that this is normal. You might feel more casual and relaxed during a second pregnancy, or you might feel more worried. You might feel more or less close to this baby than you did the first time, or you might feel different in your relationship with the baby’s father. All of these variations in feelings are normal, and none of them are indicators of any problems. The unique journey of each pregnancy results in the birth of a totally different little person!

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