Today you will learn the science behind what bodily changes to expect the 2nd time around and how you can help yourself out with some great tips to make this pregnancy the best one yet. Listen to "Second Pregnancy Symptoms: What You Did NOT Expect! Pregnancy Pukeology Podcast Episode 15" on Spreaker.
Deliveries are like babies, they may come from the same place but they are all different. Your mind and body however do go through mental and physiologic changes that have already happened with your first pregnancy. Like most of us, your birth plan went completely out of the window after delivering your first child. With the second you learned to be more valuable and adaptable for change because anything can happen.
How you feel about being pregnant will probably be different. Since you already have one child you’re chasing, you will probably feel more tired since you have no time to nap. Your belly will “pop” faster because your body has muscle memory and stretches easier. The good news is there is less round ligament pain in the first trimester but you’re still going to pee like a racehorse. If you want to know why you keep running to the bathroom check out Pregnancy Pukeology Podcast Episode 11. And you will recognize your baby’s communication with you sooner. By that I mean you will probably feel the baby kick sooner around the 4th month, but second time moms are also more likely to have Braxton Hicks contractions earlier.
Physiologically, the hormones produced by your body generally come in excess with the second because like muscle memory your body has been through this situation before. Hormones like Relaxin which helps to open up the pelvis, Prolactin which helps to increase the amount of breast milk, and Oxytocin which is the happy hormone that makes you love and cherish the baby with every smell. If you had gestational diabetes or pregnancy-induced hypertension or pre-eclampsia with the first child you are more likely to have the same results with your second pregnancy, and even keep them as a primary condition later on in life. Cardiac abnormalities, mainly mitral valve prolapse, are also more likely to happen with the second child as the increase in fluids bow the heart valves making them more parachute-like when put under stressful conditions such as subsequent pregnancies.
Yes ladies you are more than likely to have more aches and pains, especially if you didn’t get your abdominal muscles back in shape after your last delivery. The risk of back pain increases with each subsequent pregnancy. And I hate to say this out loud, but varicose veins also tend to get worse after baby number one due to the pooling of blood. Please try to make exercise part of your daily routine.
Speaking of muscles, the vaginal canal which is a large band of muscles does have muscle memory so if you are having a second vaginal delivery your body will be able to kick into action and move the child down the birth canal quicker. Cervical change usually happens twice as fast as with a primary delivery. Usually, we estimate one centimeter per hour on your first pregnancy and half that amount of time for the second. So labor during 1st-time pregnancies is about 8 hours and about 5 hours for subsequent pregnancies. This means the second stage, the pushing, and birth phase is under two hours with the 2nd baby. Yeah! You get to see your baby sooner than with the first.
The after birth, or the cramping feeling when the uterus is trying to shrink back down to size, is more intense. Imagine your uterus is a balloon, the first time it is nice and tight and will shrink back down when deflated but the second time you blow it up and the air comes out it doesn’t return to its original size unless forced. Your body will have to contract stronger and you will probably have Pitocin hung longer after baby #2.
Anticipated side effects or complications like whether or not the baby becomes distressed during delivery causing an emergency C-section, or having nausea or vomiting during delivery is a case-by-case basis. 80% of women experience the number one side effect nausea and vomiting during their delivery but luckily natural solutions like the NoMo Nausea Band www.NoMoNausea.com are now available in hospitals, BuyBuy Baby, and NoMo Nausea Kids is now over the counter in CVS stores to help alleviate complications in seconds without the fever of adverse side effects from medications.
Tips & Tricks
Pregnancy knowledge is the feeling of knowing nothing with the first to too much with the second.
I talk more about this and emotional intelligence on the WeGo Kids TV series & podcast. Check out ParentTalk.TV or on YouTube youtu.be/Vu8tvw2xON8
Interview with Dr. Jacqueline Darna, and you get to see my face too.
I’ve let you in on the truth about the second pregnancy, both the negatives (bigger belly, exhaustion, back pain, varicose veins, Braxton hicks) and positives (feeling the baby kick for the first time faster & shorter labor). Here’s some great advice on how you can make the most of your 2nd pregnancy.
Childbearing and child-rearing take a tribe. Don’t be embarrassed to ask friends and family to take your 1st child so you can have an hour to yourself. Whether you spend that at the spa, reading a book, swimming, or napping, just don’t do mundane chores around the house because you need a little relaxation to feel rejuvenated and combat the feeling of complete exhaustion.
Using a belly band, or support to help hold up the baby, will not only help your back but will keep your stomach muscles tighter. These bands, or for my Latin ladies faces, are also great for getting your postpartum body back to normal.
Since breastfeeding is easier the second time around, probably because your milk production is more than with the first. Make sure you have lanolin, olive oil, or any other nipple cream in your hospital bag. And don’t forget your breastfeeding pillow, a nipple shield if your nipples are inverted, breast pads or a milk catcher like milk savers, and your speaker. Did you know that soothing music increases the amount of breast milk? One study suggested that moms pumping with premie babies made 120% more milk while listening to music.
I cannot stress the importance of exercise. Circulating the blood and excess fluid pregnant women accumulate during pregnancy to avoid swelling in the feet and other types of edema. Exercise will help you have fewer varicose veins. Oh, so now you listening! Wear a TED hose or at least those knee-high athletic socks and always put your feet up when you resting to avoid those ugly veins.
Swimming or other low-impact exercise routines are great especially since pregnancy hormones cause all ligaments to stretch so injury is more common and you know you’re not supposed to pick up anything more than 20 pounds during your first trimester to avoid miscarriage. Another muscle that is usually ignored is the Kegel Muscle. Squeezing this muscle makes you stop peeing once started and helps to keep the vaginal muscle tight. Do Kegels every day, and the bonus is it makes you horny so your hubby will thank me.
What birth plan? I always think it’s so cute when first-time moms have a birth plan. I always ask “how did that go?” It never goes as planned, and 2nd-time moms are more understanding of that. 1 out of 3 pregnancies end up in a c-section, so always have your NoMo Nausea Band in your hospital bag. Nausea and vomiting during delivery, especially during a c-section due to spinal anesthesia placement, is the most common complication. Try to lay down and puke at the same time, not fun! Avoid all that with NoMo Nausea’s peppermint aromatherapy-infused acupressure wristband that can be worn into surgery and can stop 80% of women from vomiting in just 30 seconds. So enjoy the birth of baby #2.
The delivery experience is as unique with each child as the baby's personality that it will take on. For more information on the journey listen to our other Pregnancy Pukeology Podcast episodes starring ME the doctor next door Dr. PukeNoMo. And ladies remember, "you got this" because you did it before and will do it again. May you all have safe deliveries!