It's hard to guess what labor will be like before you give birth to your first baby. Yes, your friends and family members have likely told you countless stories of their (probably) horrific experience. At the end of the day, however, you know that your own delivery will likely be completely different. When you're having your second baby, though, you have a much better idea of what to expect. But that doesn't guarantee everything will be exactly the same. There are a few ways labor is different with your second baby.
One big change you may notice as your enter the end of your second pregnancy is the lack of stress and anxiety you feel. Partially because you're too busy and distracted by your first child, and partially because you've been there before. If you're anything like me, you'll be continually surprised every time you look at a calendar and see just how close you are to the big day. Whether you're waiting to go into labor naturally or are having a planned C-section, many of the difference apply either way. .
Here are five ways your second labor is likely to be different from your first, for better or worse.
1. Your Labor Might Be Shorter
Your body knows the drill after you had your first baby, so don't be surprised if you breeze right through your second delivery. Live Strong noted that each stage of labor with your second baby will generally be shorter than your first, knocking off as much as a few hours from your first delivery.
2. Your Contractions Might Get Stronger, Faster
If it took a while for your contractions to ramp up during your first labor, that may not be the case the second time around. According to Baby Center, your contractions might grow stronger in a short span of time. So be prepared to deal with the pain.
3. You Might Be More Relaxed
You've done it once, and you know you can do it again. According to Babble, many moms find that their second birth is easier and less stressful because they have a better idea of what to expect in the delivery room. Of course, this might not hold true if your first birth experience had complications or was traumatic.
4. You Might Be In More Pain After
After you give birth, you'll continue to have contractions as your uterus tries to shrink back down to normal size. According to Today's Parents, these pains might be worse with your second pregnancy because your uterus already lost so much muscle tone with your first child.
5. You Might Have More Braxton-Hicks
Figuring out when you're truly in labor with your second child might be a bit tricky. That's because you might have more Braxton Hicks contractions (or false contractions) the second time around, according to Parents. If they're not true contractions, they should go away when you stand up or change positions.