I'm pregnant with my second child. Can I expect any differences in my second pregnancy?
Answers from Roger W. Harms, M.D.
Every pregnancy is different — and there's no way to predict what your next pregnancy will be like.
However, during a second pregnancy you might notice a few differences from your first pregnancy, including:
- Increased fatigue. Taking care of your current child while being pregnant and your older age during your second pregnancy might make you feel more fatigued.
- Different breast changes. Your breasts might not be as tender or increase in size as much during your second pregnancy.
- Showing earlier. Many women feel that they show earlier during their second pregnancy. This could be because their prior pregnancy stretched their abdominal muscles.
- Feeling the baby move earlier. You might feel the baby move earlier during your second pregnancy simply because you know what to look for.
- Changes in Braxton Hicks contractions. You might experience more false labor contractions or notice them earlier during your second pregnancy.
- Shorter labor. Labor is likely to be shorter in a second pregnancy.
Also, keep in mind that if you had any complications during your first pregnancy, such as premature birth, hypertension or gestational diabetes, you might be at increased risk in your second pregnancy or later pregnancies. Be sure to talk to your health care provider about signs and symptoms to be aware of and any steps you can take to reduce your risk.
Dec. 18, 2014
See more Expert Answers
- Lykke JA, et al. Recurring complications in second pregnancy. Obstetrics & Gynecology. 2009;113:1217.
- American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. Your Pregnancy and Childbirth Month to Month. 5th ed. Washington, D.C.: American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists; 2010:1.
- Hernandez-Diaz S, et al. Risk of preeclampsia in first and subsequent pregnancies: Prospective cohort studies. British Medical Journal. 2009;338:b2255.
- Harms RW (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Nov. 13, 2014.
- Funai EF, et al. Mechanism of normal labor and delivery. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Nov. 14, 2014.