Getting ready for a second pregnancy

It may seem that all births are similar to each other, but this is not so. The second birth is easier than the first. And there are reasons for this.

So, decided on a second baby? Of course, you need to know how the second pregnancy goes, how long the second birth lasts – 37, 38, 39 or 40 weeks, are they really shorter than the first? So many questions!

The second pregnancy and the second birth, of course, will not be like the first. Especially if the child was not planned and was conceived “by accident.”  Where to give birth, how to choose a hospital and a doctor, what else is needed. For the first time, there were only relatives and friends whose advice is sometimes harmful or frankly stupid. But now, that is, your own experience! Now there will be time and opportunity to correct all errors, take into account all the nuances, do everything perfectly well! Pregnancy should be desired, and the child loved and long-awaited. After all, you have to wait 40-38 weeks, and this is a long time.

We consider the term

It is generally accepted that pregnancy lasts 9 months, but gynecologists think differently. Obstetric period – by the first day of the last, before pregnancy, menstruation is added 280 days or 40 weeks, this is the estimated term of delivery. Why then 9, if 40 weeks is 10 months? Doctors calculate the time in such a way as to avoid confusion. Almost every woman knows the day of the beginning of menstruation, but the term of ovulation is unlikely.

Ovulation begins approximately two weeks after the onset of menstruation, the fetus spends about 260-270 days, or 38 weeks, in the womb, and this will be 9 months. How long the second pregnancy will last is unknown; delivery can be expected from 37 weeks. Also, the normal term of delivery is 38, 39, 40 weeks. These are the complicated calculations.

Getting ready for a second pregnancy

You need to start with the rejection of all bad habits. If they are not, then this is also not enough. You need to get good ones. Healthy nutrition, physical activity, good rest and fresh air are useful for women and unborn children. These are common truths, but most mothers and fathers neglect them. Then it is advisable to take tests – both to dad and mom. Inflammation, latent infections, etc. may interfere with a planned pregnancy and cause irreparable harm to the baby.

A multiparous woman needs to strengthen the pelvic muscles so that labor can be successful. Complications, if they were in the first birth, are likely to recur in the second. If the first birth took place prematurely – up to 37 weeks, the same threatens for the second time, although normal births are also possible – at 38, 39 or 40 weeks.

If a woman has had an abortion or diagnostic curettage, the second pregnancy should be postponed for at least six months. You also need to check the general health indicators, how many chronic diseases appear after 30-40 years – tonsillitis, otitis media, sinusitis, etc., all these diseases need to be cured. Make an ECG of the heart, pelvic ultrasound, visit the dentist. It is necessary to do everything to protect the health of the unborn child. After all, nothing can be fixed, however painful it would be. If there are hereditary diseases or parents are more than 40 years old, it will not be superfluous to be checked in the medical and genetic center.


Pregnancy is divided into trimesters, i.e. three periods. Each week of the first period brings a new sensation. There is a lot of special literature that lists the entire pregnancy by week.
The course of the second pregnancy is different from the first. A lot depends on the age, how old the woman is.

The second birth takes place differently at 20, 30, 40 years.

The uterus and abdominal muscles are already stretched by the first pregnancy, so the tummy grows faster, as early as 16 weeks you can see that the woman is pregnant. Perhaps faster weight gain. Stirring of the fetus is also felt more likely from 18 weeks. The second child is usually born larger than the first, because the mother’s body already knows what is happening and how much nutrients should be given to the baby.

It is believed that the second pregnancy is shorter than the first, but this is not always the case. A normal pregnancy lasts from the 37th full week to the end of the 42nd. Before this period – premature birth, and more – belated. In the last weeks you need to wait for childbirth from day to day.


Usually the birth of a child lasts an average of 6 to 11 hours, a quick birth from 2 to 6 hours, and rapid less than 4 hours. The normal duration depends on whether this is the first or second birth. Repeated are all subsequent ones – second, third, etc.

Delivery takes place in three stages:

  1. The beginning of childbirth – the beginning of contractions and the opening of the cervix;
  2. Birth of a child – expulsion of a fetus;
  3. The last – the final stage of normal childbirth.
Start of labor

A woman’s uterus is a figurative, muscular sac. The uterus has a cervix, a narrowing of the neck inward is the internal pharynx, and a narrowing of the neck in the vagina is external. During childbirth, the uterus contracts, this is called contractions. At the first birth, contractions can begin before delivery, at 38 weeks, while labor begins at 40 weeks. When repeated, immediately before birth, starting at 37 weeks. Childbirth can begin at 38-39 weeks, simultaneously with labor.

The inputs of the neck open – first internal, then external. In primiparas it is longer – gradually. During the second birth, everything happens simultaneously, which reduces the time of birth. In nulliparous, the onset of labor lasts 10–11 hours; in the nulliparous, the onset of labor is reduced by several hours and lasts 6–7 hours. The onset of contractions, during the second birth, must be monitored very carefully and immediately, after their appearance,

When the neck opens fully, i.e. it is not detected by vaginal examination, the second stage of childbirth begins – birth.

Birth of a child

Attempts join the contractions – contraction of the muscles of the abdomen. After the amniotic fluid pressure rises, the body extends and translational movement along the birth canal begins. “Body memory” after the first birth helps a woman – attempts go faster, the fetus moves faster through the birth canal. The time of the second stage in multiparous women is reduced to 15-30 minutes, in contrast to primiparous, in which the second period of birth lasts from one and a half to two and a half hours. During the second birth, a weakening of labor can occur, which is associated with weakness in the muscles that move the labor. More often this happens after the second birth.

So, having passed the birth canal, the baby is born. He finds himself in caring hands, the very first, most long-awaited cry is heard. Mommy is happy, at this moment in the body there is a powerful release of the hormone oxytocin – the “hormone of love”, this hormone takes an active part in labor, and is also responsible for the “maternal instinct.” A woman immediately after the birth of a child feels tremendous relief, euphoria. But that’s not all, the third stage of labor is ahead.


The final stage of childbirth, there is a separation from the uterus of the placenta and fetal membranes, the so-called child’s place and the exit of the placenta through the birth canal. This period should be very short, how long it lasts depends on many reasons, on average 30 minutes. This time is the same for both the first and second births. During the birth of the afterbirth, a woman can lose up to 0.30 liters of blood. With repeated birth, the risk of atonic uterine bleeding increases, because uterine tissue can contract poorly after numerous births.

When to plan a second pregnancy

After the first child, some mothers begin to think about a little brother or sister for their baby – after all, the children of the weather are great! But it’s better to wait a bit.

The body must gain strength and replenish reserves, “calm the nerves” and correct the hormonal background. Especially if a woman gives birth after 39-40 years. For a couple of years after the birth, the reserves of important trace elements – iron and calcium are completely restored, the woman has time to relax and is already mentally ready for her second child.

According to the recommendations of WHO (World Health Organization), a certain amount of time must pass for the full recovery of a woman after childbirth. The rehabilitation period after the first birth is at least 2-3 years. During this period of time, a woman feeds her baby with breast milk – preferably at least a year, restores her health – at least a year. This is very important for the normal development of the second pregnancy and the bearing of a healthy baby. And 38-40 weeks for a second pregnancy. So it turns out almost three years! A shorter interval between births is fraught with adverse consequences for both mom and baby.

If the time between birth is short

The short period between the first and second pregnancy is the risk of miscarriage up to 38-39 weeks, complications or premature birth. But if everything, however, the pregnancy has come earlier than planned, then you need to carefully take care: caution, moderation and common sense, constant monitoring by a doctor.

To conceive, bear and have a baby, the mother needs to restore the hormonal background and, accordingly, the menstrual cycle. It also takes time to strengthen the muscles of the pelvis and organs of the reproductive system.

A short pause, less than 2 years, does not compensate for the lack of vitamins and minerals, and this is a possible pathology of development, slow growth and the possibility of abortion. Natural blood loss in previous births is sometimes complicated by anemia – a lack of iron, and the lack of time “for myself” after giving birth, often prevents a woman from carefully treating her health.

“Oh, when to me. I only have time to turn around, I even have no time to sleep, I get a nap for about 30 minutes ”- this is what gynecologists hear from every second mother. So the second pregnancy in this case is complicated by iron deficiency, and this in turn leads to underdevelopment, early childbirth, weak labor, bleeding, and after childbirth – inflammatory diseases of the genitourinary system.

What else threatens a multiparous mother if there is not enough time between births? The blood supply to the placenta may be insufficient – accordingly, there is little oxygen for the child, and this is hypoxia, due to which there is a slowdown in the development and growth of the fetus. If the uterus is not fully restored, there are internal injuries and structural changes, then this can cause bleeding during pregnancy, and even a miscarriage.

So, from the first to the second birth, at least 2.5 years must pass. But what about the long gap between the first and second child? A long pause, more than 10 years or more, especially after 30-40 years of age, is also not very favorable for the second birth. With age, extragenital diseases are acquired – hypertension, hormonal diseases. As a result, the risk of not delivering the baby until 38-39 weeks, the formation of defects in the fetus, early birth – up to 37 weeks, weak labor is increased.

The condition of the uterus also worsens, structural changes occur. And this can lead to complications with the placenta, therefore, there are often complications such as improper attachment and the placenta grows to the tissues of the uterus, which leads to complications of pregnancy, fetal hypoxia and usually ends with surgery. And of course

Second birth – yes!

From the point of view of physiology, the second birth is the most favorable for a woman. The body is prepared by the first birth, pain is felt less, childbirth is faster, the woman is ready psychologically – she is quite aware that she expects and is not afraid of it.

The third and subsequent births, unfortunately, can be much more difficult – mothers do not get younger, pregnancy and childbirth is a huge stress, the body wears out. However, the incomparable happiness of motherhood will help twice mom to cope with any difficulties. Take care of yourself and the health of your children.

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