33 answers

How Fast Will Labor for 2Nd Baby Be Compared to 1St?

Is it true that the 2nd baby comes much faster than the 1st? I think I got to the hospital too early the 1st time and want to wait longer on the 2nd, but not sure if that would be a good idea. Also, when someone asks how long you were in labor, when do you start counting? When contractions are 5 min apart? if so, that was about 11 hours for my 1st; 1.5 hrs of it pushing.
I'd love to hear your experiences or recommendations. I am currently 34 weeks prego and have a 6 hour car trip scheduled in 2 weeks (don't want to deliver on the road!).

What can I do next?

So What Happened?™

I did not go on the car trip (my sister came to visit me instead). My baby was born 1 week early. Contractions started at 3pm, got serious at 9 or 10 pm and she was born just after midnight. The "push" phase was just 10 minutes (!) so definitely faster than the first baby.

Featured Answers

Every birth and baby is different. My first and second were the same amount of time, and my third ended in an emergency c-section. Good Luck!

For me it was very quick. I think I pushed two or three times and the baby was out. Very easy. Almost too quick because I feel like it should have been longer to be more memorable. Weird, huh!

More Answers

Hi K.!!

Thanks for asking this question. I've been wondering the same thing. The thing is..now I'm scared..LOL. I'm pregnant with my second and due April 2nd. I usually count the length of my labor with my first, from the first contraction that I felt, which was 36 hours..start to finish. But after reading some of the posts I realized that if I count from when I was in active labor or when I was actually kept in the hospital, then it is less than 5 hours with about 10 minutes of pushing. My midwife told me that I almost went faster than one of her patients who had already had 2 children and she told me that when I have my second child, I better get to the hospital fast.

Now I'm afraid that I'll end up having her on the way to the hosptial..lol..Guess we'll see.


1 mom found this helpful

We wanted to wait as long as possible before going to the hospital too. Less poking & prodding and interventions that way for sure! HOWEVER, the first one I went to the hospital thinking I was far along in labor only to be told to go home as I was only at 2cm. Went home and labored all thru the night, went back to hosp and I was at 8cm or so. Just progressed very naturally but slowly! The second one I went thru transition in the car on the way to the hosp. and when checked I was already at 10cm ready to push. For me, I waited until the contractions were about 4 min apart and consistent, that's when my DR said to come NO LATER than that but when I hit that point it progressed REALLY FAST after that and I really waited too long. My Dr had to be called last minute (she wasn't happy w/ me! :-))and I had to hold off on pushing 3 times before she got there. SO I guess you could say for me the second one was definitely faster!! :-) That's what I've heard from everyone too. If you are considering a natural childbirth (no drugs) by any chance - which I did, It is FAR EASIER the 2nd time around (at least in my case) Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

HI K.,

I think it also depends on the size of the baby, my 3rd baby (which was actually my 2nd vaginal birth, my first was a c-section) was 9 lbs 4 oz, so she took as long for me to have as my 2nd which was 8 lbs, my labors were about the same time in length! Also I hear and at least with my experience each baby gets a little bigger! I would just map out where the hospitals are along your road trip..just in case, for you peace of mind too! Good luck with your new baby!

take care....M.

1 mom found this helpful

My second was faster than the first. The first was about 12 hours (from when I entered the hospital). His head was too big and it took alot longer than expected; about 2 hours pushing. The second one was about ....... Oh my, I don't remember! It was much quicker, though. I do know that they could have filmed me. Three hee's and a who, push, push and baby! However, my first one was two weeks before the due date and the second one was a week after the due date.

Good luck with your growing family!

Hi K.,

For me, yes, the 2nd time around came really fast. I've heard it usually come fast the second time, but I was really surprised at how fast! My first child, I had the contraction around 7 p.m., but I didn't go into the hospital until the next morning. My labor was 7 minutes apart when we left the house at 6:30 a.m. the next day and I was dilating at 3 cm and was able to receive the epidural right away. I wasn't fully dilated until 7 that evening, but due to complication, I ended up with an emergency C-section.

My second child, I felt the contraction around midnight, but decided to wait a little bit longer. Around 3:30 a.m., that was when I went into labor with 5 minutes apart. I called my brother, who is a doctor and he told me to get to the hospital right away. My second son was borned at 6 a.m., 2 hours after I went into labor. He came a day earlier then my scheduled C-section, so yes, I was surprised at how fast the second one came.

Good luck to you.

My four went from 23 hours to 12 hours to 8 to 4, so they do seem to go down in time but it really is hard to gauge. I started counting when they were just consistent, more like 7 or 8 minutes apart.My second was face up and had the cord around his neck so maybe it would have been much faster if under different circumstances. You never can tell. 6 hours is a long trip for a pregnant person. Best of luck and Merry Christmas!

For me labor got shorter for every subsequent baby. My first baby was born 8 hours after contractions started. Our second son was born 6 hours after contractions started and baby number 3 was here after only 5 hours! It took me longer with our last son because I had a water birth at home and being in the water slowed down contractions considerably.

The time between I felt like it's time to go to the hospital and giving birth however got shorter every time too, so baby number 3 was almost born in the car (and we only had a 10 minute ride to the hospital).

I did only push 3 or 4 times for each of my babies, so I can't tell you anything about that.

Good luck to you.

My 1st- 7 hrs
2nd- 3.5 hrs
3rd- 4 hrs
4th- 4 hrs
Regular contractions for me was 10 min apart and increasing in severity. I never had braxton hicks contractions, if I went into labor it was real and fast. I'd check with your dr before going on your trip.

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.