Second Pregnancy after C-section – Your complete guide

Second Pregnancy after C-section

Recovering from a C-section and planning for a second child are a whole different ride compared to that in a normal pregnancy. While the usual drill of keeping an eye on a fertile window calculator, stocking up on the pregnancy test kit, and the other basics of pregnancy will remain the same even around your second pregnancy, there’s a whole new bag of things that you need to know and take care of when you’ve undergone a C-section the first time around.

Here's everything you need to know to improve your chances for a successful second pregnancy after c-section. 

What is the ideal gap between the C-Section and a second pregnancy?

You should at least wait for six months before trying to conceive again. In fact, as per a World Health Organisation study, 24 months is the ideal most gap between two pregnancies. This is in order to make sure that the wounds are healed and your body is ready to take on pregnancy again. 

Why is that time gap necessary?

C-Section takes an intense toll on your body – even more intense than a vaginal birth. Thus, your body needs more time to heal a C-Section compared to a vaginal birth. 

Caesarean section is an abdominal surgery. The time taken for the wounds to heal is different for different women. The more time you give for the healing process, the lesser chances of complications in your subsequent delivery. During a C-Section, the body also loses a lot of nutrients. It takes some time for the body to replenish itself with those nutrients with the help of diet and medication. 

If there have been any complications during your first delivery, then waiting for a fair amount of time before planning your next pregnancy is sensible. Consult your doctor for better guidance on that front. 

Are there any risks involved in getting pregnant soon after a C-Section?

There are certain health risks that you might be prone to if you get pregnant soon after a C-Section. 
Placenta Previa -  The placenta attaches itself to the lower uterine wall that seals the cervix, instead of attaching to the upper walls of the uterus. 
Placental abruption - Low lying placenta or complete detachment of the placenta from the uterine wall. This is a serious complication and highly risky. 
Risk of uterine rupture - Uterine rupture is when the previous C-Section scar tears. If the gap is too less, a vaginal birth after C-Section (VBAC) can lead to uterine rupture. 
Premature birth - A gap of less than six months increases the risk of premature birth. 
Low birth weight - A lower gap can also lead to the baby being born with a weight of under 2.5 kg, which is considered unhealthy for the new-born. 

How can I improve my chances of pregnancy after a C-Section?

Track your menstrual cycle: The hormonal changes that your body undergoes after pregnancy leads to an altered menstrual cycle. It takes some time for things to fall back in place. Keep a track of this. Once a definite menstrual cycle is back, calculate your fertile window using an ovulation calculator
A healthy lifestyle: A healthy lifestyle will not only quicken the healing process, but also help you become fit sooner. It’ll also regulate your hormones and keep you in a better frame of mind. All these factors work together to improve your chances of conception.
Vitamins: Your body needs vitamins to get back to efficiency. An increased intake of vitamins and supplements like folic acid via added supplements will prove to be immensely helpful.
Enjoy the sex: It’s natural to feel anxious or stressed out, when you’re trying again after a C-section. Focus on having a great time with your partner. Go at your own pace and keep communicating with your partner.
Consult your doctor or ob-gyn regularly to keep track of your healing and wellness. Every situation is different, and a doctor who knows your case well will give you the best advice when it comes to a second pregnancy after a C-Section. Got questions for us? Drop them in the comments!


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