Feeling Your Baby Move in Your Second Pregnancy

Quickening in Second Pregnancy

How soon will you feel your second baby?
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Your second pregnancy makes everything a bit different, that includes when you start to feel your baby move. Feeling your baby move for the first time in each pregnancy is called quickening. While a first time mother might not feel her baby move until after 18-22 weeks, as an experienced mother, you may notice that you feel your baby much sooner.

You might notice quickening in a second pregnancy only slightly sooner, for example around 16-18 weeks.

Or you may notice it a lot sooner, as in late first trimester. Your baby is moving from early pregnancy on. Though typically the baby is so small that it is difficult to feel.

Who Feels Their Baby Move Sooner?

In cases where moms felt the baby early on I usually hear a few things:

  • They are not first time moms.
  • They are typically thinner.
  • They are usually lying down or curled up and quiet.
  • It is also important to remember that this early, they do not feel the baby consistently.

"I was laying down on my side, reading a book while my toddler napped. I felt a swish," replied April. "I remember thinking, 'That feels really familiar - what is that?' I'm embarrassed to say it took me a bit to try to figure out what I was feeling. I was 14 weeks along. I didn't feel the baby again until almost 16 weeks, just when I was about to hit panic mode."

When to Be Concerned About Your Baby's Movements

It can still be normal not to feel your baby move until later in pregnancy, even in your second pregnancy or more.

Talk to your doctor or midwife about any concerns that you have with your baby moving. There are reasons that you may not feel the baby and not have concerns, though any time you think you should feel the baby, it is normal to be worried. This is where a call to your doctor or midwife is important.

You might be feeling the baby about the same time as your last baby or even slightly later if any of the following are true:

  • You have an anterior placenta. This means it blocks the kicks of your baby and because it has no nerves, the kicks have to be larger to feel them through the placenta.
  • Your baby's position can alter how you experience the movement. If your baby is tucked into one area and kicking into an open space of amniotic fluid, you're not likely to feel that movement as well. (This about what you feel when another swimmer is underwater and close.)
  • You weigh more than you did in your first pregnancy. The extra padding can make it more difficult to feel externally.

Your doctor or midwife will go over everything with you the same way your first prenatal care appointments happened. That said, having a second (or more) baby is usually very different from the first. This often times surprises second time mothers, because they think they know what to expect.  So do not hesitate to talk to your practitioner for advice.

They are used to second or more time mothers just as much as the first time mothers. Someone once said:

In your first pregnancy, you're worried because you don't know what to expect. Your second pregnancy, you're worried because you do and it doesn't work that way."

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