Pregnancy Stats – When Does Pregnancy Start To Show, Chances Of Delivering Early With Second Pregnancy Trends, & More
It’s a rare pregnant mom who doesn’t find herself wondering about trends with pregnancies and childbirths. If you’ve ever wondered when do pregnant women start showing, worried about your third pregnancy showing early, or looked up third baby early or late statistics you’re not alone. Whether it’s a first, second, third baby or more moms often share a curiosity of how their experience compares to other women and, in some cases, what they can expect their experience to look like.
With each of my pregnancies and births I found myself wondering new things like:
“When do you start showing in pregnancy?”
“Are second babies born earlier?”
“What are some 3rd pregnancy labor statistics? Are they shorter?”
Each pregnancy and birth was it’s own new journey with it’s own new curiosities and even though no statistical answer could predict my own experience, I found myself eagerly researching trends in hopes of gaining some insight into what I could expect for myself.
If you find yourself searching for the answers to any of these similar questions concerning pregnancy statistics, look no further for some answers.
I recently polled over 100 moms to learn from their personal experiences with pregnancy and childbirth – to see if there are indeed any noteworthy trends. Specifically, I focused on the comparison of averages between different mother’s first, second, and third pregnancies (although there is much more to be gained from the responses than the comparison between first or subsequent pregnancies alone.)
In this post I’m going to summarize the responses of these women in five key areas of questions including:
- When did each pregnancy start showing?
- Did second and third babies come earlier?
- How long were labors for first, second, or third babies?
- How many c-sections occurred to deliver first, second, and third babies?
- How many women were induced with their first, second, or third deliveries?
In each section I will break down the details of how women responded to related survey questions and what any significant trends are that can be gathered from the data. Some of the trends surprised me even after experiencing three pregnancies and births myself!
Pregnancy and Childbirth Statistics – 2022
1. When do women start showing with their first, second, and third pregnancies?
Survey participants selected whether they started showing before 10 weeks of pregnancy, between 10-15 weeks, between 15-20 weeks, between 20-25 weeks, or between 25-30 weeks with each of their pregnancies. 111 women responded regarding their first pregnancy, 92 regarding their second, and 53 regarding their third. The results are indicated below in percentages:
- Women pregnant for the second or third time definitely started showing sooner! 37% of women pregnant with their first claimed to start showing before week 15 while 60% of women pregnant with their second and 64% of women pregnant with their third baby claimed to start showing before week 15.
- The highest percentage of first time moms claimed to start showing their pregnancies between 15-20 weeks.
- The highest percentage of second and third time moms claimed to start showing their pregnancies between 10-15 weeks.
The answer to when do women start showing definitely changed with each pregnancy based on survey results. Only 37% of first time moms claimed to start showing before 15 weeks of pregnancy while 60% of second time moms and 64% of third time moms claimed to start showing before 15 weeks.
2. Did your baby come early or late?
Survey participants shared when each of their babies arrived. They selected 9+ days early, 5-8 days early, 1-4 days early, right on the due date, 1-4 days late, 5-8 days late, or 9+ days late. 111 women answered concerning their first baby, 86 women answered concerning their second baby, and 48 women answered concerning their third baby. The results are indicated below in percentages:
- The highest percentage of first births actually occurred 9+ days early!
- The majority of babies with each birth arrived on or before the mother’s due date.
- 66% of first babies came on or before the mother’s due date
- 71% of second babies came on or before the mother’s due date
- 69% of third babies came on or before the mother’s due date
While it may sometimes be assumed that subsequent labors begin sooner than a mother’s first, these second baby labor statistics show only a slight increase in early births as compared to a mother’s first labor. Similarly, these third baby statistics show an even smaller uptick in early births from the percentage indicated from mothers regarding their first birth experiences.
3. How long were your labors?
Survey participants selected whether their labor with each of their first three babies was less than 5 hours, 5-12 hours, 13-20 hours, 21-28 hours, or 29+ hours long. 95 women answered concerning their first baby, 70 answered concerning their second baby, and 41 answered concerning their third baby. The results are shown below in percentages:
- Only 46% of first labors were 12 hours or less while 73% of second labors and 85% of third labors were 12 hours or less.
- 15% of first labors were reported to be over 29 hours while only 1% of second labors and 3% of third labors were reported to be that long.
- 36% of first births were reported to be over 21 hours while only 10% of second labors and 8% of third labors were reported to be that long.
The statistics from this portion of the survey definitely supported the fact that first labors had a higher tendency to be longer than the labors of second or third births. First labors were reported to have the lowest percentage rate for 12 hours or less and the highest percentage rate for 21 hours or more.
4. Did you have a c-section?
Survey participants shared whether they had a c-section with their first, second, or third babies and whether it was scheduled or emergency. 115 women answered concerning their first baby, 88 concerning their second baby, and 48 concerning their third baby. The results are shown in percentages below:
- The overall percentage of c-sections decreased from first to subsequent births.
- The percentage of scheduled c-sections vs. emergency c-sections increased notably from first to subsequent births.
- 21% of c-sections were scheduled with a first baby
- 76% of c-sections were scheduled with a second baby
- 71% of c-sections were scheduled with a third baby
The statistics of scheduled vs. emergency c-sections were based on a smaller response pool of 24 mothers with their first baby, 17 with their second, and 7 with their third. However, the percentages seem to indicate that emergency c-sections were more common with first births than with second or third birth experiences.
5. Were you induced as any part of your birth experience?
Survey participants were asked whether they were induced for any part of their birth experiences with their first, second, or third baby. Response selections included having a scheduled inducement, having labor start and then being induced in some way to progress it, or having no inducement with their labor. 106 women answered regarding their first baby, 82 regarding their second baby, and 45 regarding their third baby. The responses are shown in percentages below:
- The need to be induced after the start of labor did decrease from first births to second or third births.
- 23% of women indicated the need to be induced after the start of labor with their first baby.
- 17% of women indicated the need to be induced after the start of labor with their second baby.
- 11% of women indicated the need to be induced after the start of labor with their third baby.
- The percentage of women who had a scheduled labor induction remained relatively constant across first to third births with 25% responding that they had a scheduled induction with their first and third births and 20% responding that they had a scheduled induction with their second birth.
Whether curiosity regarding how early do you start to show with a 2nd pregnancy, when do most first time moms deliver, or anything else in between brought you to this page I hope you found the information gathered to be insightful and helpful. Every mom’s pregnancy and childbirth journey is unique, but it’s fun to see some of the trends between first, second, and third experiences across a pool of different mothers!
If you’re a first time mom make sure you also read my 17 Tips For First Time Moms From Other Moms and 10 Tips For Surviving Severe Morning Sickness posts. You can also download a free baby registry checklist or hospital bag checklist to make sure you have everything ready for the arrival of your new addition.