Pregnancy with one kid can feel different from another. You may across different symptoms after becoming pregnant with a second child.
Symptoms and Tips for a Second Pregnancy
During your first pregnancy, you may be like me, lucky enough to have no nausea or morning sickness, which means you can pretty much keep going and going. If you think pregnancy with a second baby is similar, you might be surprised to learn how many things you don’t even notice that affect your second pregnancy the same way they did your first.
Dr. Danelle Fisher, women’s health expert and author of Pregnant for the Second Time, tells Romper that there are certain things a second time mom has to consider that you might not expect.
You’ll Have Different Risks
As a first-time mom, you might not think that pregnancy with your second baby will pose any risks.
What to Expect with a Second Pregnancy
It’s a different game—a whole different game. But, a whole different game it is.
Even if you think you’ve got this pregnancy thing, there are going to be moments when you say, “What have I gotten myself into?” as your body bumbles through yet another round of change. The childbearing process is definitely more than a little unpredictable. So how can you plan for that?
You can’t. The truth is that no matter how careful you are or how prepared you are, pregnancy is a wild ride.
That’s why our best advice for moms with a second kid is to take a deep breath and proceed with caution. These are the main things you’ll need to know.
How Much Food Can You Still Eat?
After your first pregnancy, you might feel like you can eat anything your heart desires.
Preparing for the Baby
Women who are pregnant with their second baby often face new questions from well-meaning friends and family. Since you are still dealing with first-time parenting, you’re likely still grappling with how best to handle sleep, feedings, and diapering. You may even be wondering if it’s safe to take prenatal vitamins or not.
Keeping Your Pregnancy a Secret
When you are pregnant with your second child, there’s often no avoiding the attention. That could be positive or negative, but chances are good that people will start asking you if you’re having any more kids. When your family is small, keeping your pregnancy a secret from your friends and family is a common practice. But for moms with two kids, it is almost impossible to keep things private.
Bringing Baby Home
If you have a cesarean birth, the doctor or midwife may suggest a vaginal delivery. The doctor might also be able to manually adjust your baby’s position.
Not all women have an easier time with the delivery of a second child than a first. Research by the World Health Organization (WHO) reports that fewer than 20% of women have a complication-free vaginal delivery after having a cesarean.
In the United States, cesarean birth rates are increasing more than 10% every year.
For women who have had a previous cesarean, success with vaginal delivery depends on many factors. For example, certain medications may reduce the chances of successful delivery.
Also, the pelvic outlet (where the baby will be delivered) will be open and gushing with blood, which can make the delivery less smooth.
Protecting Yourself from Postpartum Depression
“There are several reasons for why postpartum depression occurs,” says Janet Quinlan, MS, R.D., C.D.N., C.C.P.C., a Boston-based nutritionist. “Some women are more sensitive to the stress hormones that are released during pregnancy and labor. For some women, their hormonal balance may not be as good as they were before they were pregnant.”
Don’t delay postpartum visits with your doctor. If you start to feel anxious or depressed, even weeks or months after your baby’s birth, talk to your doctor or midwife about what steps you can take to get yourself back on track.
Michele Greenberg, M.D.
There’s a common myth that you shouldn’t have more children than your first. The only thing is, if you haven’t had a full career or are burned out by your oldest child, it’s not advisable to have a second child. But as long as you have a partner who loves and supports you, having a second child can be a wonderful opportunity to experience all the great things about being a parent while simultaneously learning to navigate what can be a tricky lifestyle.
It might not be perfect, but those experiences can build a lifetime of memories, which will be what you and your children will remember best.
Don’t miss the chance to make those memories. Before you know it, you’ll be the mom of two kids.