Do you really have to wait?

Tyrae - posted on 02/09/2011 ( 18 moms have responded )




So I had to have a c-section because my baby was in breech and it was the safest thing to do for her and me (found out during labor). The doctor told me to wait 16-18 months before having another baby. My question is do you really need to wait that long? If so, why? I know that everything has to heal up in there but if I become pregnant again by accident before than is my uterus going to explode or something? I do want to try and have a VBAC with my next baby, it's what I wanted for my first but she just didn't want to flip.

And if I do wait the 16 months is that before I get pregnant again or before I give birth again?? Doctors are rather confusing...


Krista - posted on 02/10/2011




It's not just about the healing -- it's about the fact that when you are pregnant, your body is nourishing your baby, which depletes your own body of nutrients.

The recommended 18 month gap is so that you have time to get your nutrition stores back up to where they should be, and to get your body back to optimal health, before getting pregnant again.

Studies have shown time and time again that when women DON'T wait at least 18 months, the subsequent child tends to have a much higher risk of nutritional deficiencies and low birth weight.

And it's 16-18 months before you get pregnant again, if I recall correctly. After I gave birth, my Ob-Gyn said, "All right, hopefully I'll see you again, but not before at LEAST 9 months have passed, okay?"

Jennifer - posted on 02/09/2011




18-23 months is a recommended wait time for people who have given birth both by C-Section and Vaginally. The sooner you get pregnant after giving birth, the higher the risk is for future pregnancy and birth complications, such as low birth rate of your baby, anemia, and your uterus rupturing... so yes, your uterus may literally "explode." Even people who have babies vaginally are encouraged to wait to even have sex for the first several months, to give your body time to heal and get back to its "normal" state of pre-pregnancy. Many people ignore their doctor's advice. It is not normal for your body to be in a constant state of pregnancy. As women, we're "normally," well to put it bluntly, not pregnant for most of our lives, so becoming pregnant and staying consistantly pregnant (Having a baby or being pregnant every year for 5 years for example) is not something that is healthy for us.

The Duggar family (18 kids and counting) has had children year after year after year, and their latest child was born very prematurely and with health complications. I'm surprised her doctor is not telling her to quit having kids before she miscarries, (if she hasn't already), or it kills her.

Chances are, if you have a VBAC, it will be very risky for both you and the baby, and so I highly doubt you will be able to have one. You will most likely have to have another C-Section. Your hospital's policies may not allow you to have a VBAC b/c of the legal restrictions, risks and malpractice premiums.

You have to look at the whole issue and decide for yourself if you are willing to risk the health and well being of yourself and a future child, by ignoring your doctor's recommendations. Some woman disregard the advice and do fine, and others are not so lucky.

Plus, why not enjoy the time you have with one baby, and after that baby is a couple of years old, let a 2nd child be "the baby?" This way you're not trying to balance the challenges of attention between two babies.

Good luck in your decision.

Jennifer - posted on 06/22/2012




I had my first son by c-section. I delivered my nest son vaginally 10 months later. I had no problems and my doctor didn't say anything about it.

Catherine - posted on 02/10/2011




After my c-section, I was also told to wait 18 months to get pregnant, especially if I wanted to VBAC. It does take that long for the uterus to fully heal, and many doctors will refuse to do a VBAC if you don't wait at least that long. Of course, many women get pregnant again sooner than that, but that has been linked to premature birth and the associated issues with that.

Beckystorer - posted on 06/23/2012




I had my daughter by c-section because she was also breech but I was never told about the 18 month rule and when I gave birth to my son also by c-section 13 months after my daughter I had no problems at all and my uterus is definitely still intact!!

This conversation has been closed to further comments


View replies by

Julieanne - posted on 06/29/2012




wow my fisrt was vbac and the only thing they told me was how long to wait for sex, how ever when my baby was 3 mths i feel pregnant again, and my doctor never told me about any ricks of getting pregnant to soon after. every thing was fine. untill i had her just made it to the hospital ,labour only took 45 mins :)

Pamela - posted on 06/25/2012




The reason doctors tell you this is because a C-section is a major surgery where the doctors must cut through muscle tissue, ligaments, veins, etc, in order to access the womb. Then they must cut through the womb and it's lining to remove the child. Even though you "feel" healed there is great trauma caused to your tissues and cellular structure. This is why it is suggested that you wait. Some people heal faster than others so he doctors give you maximum time instead o the minimum time for the healing process.

No, your uterus won't explode, but the stress the weight of another child puts on the uterus may be dangerous because the uterus must expand to hold the baby. If the wall of the uterus, where it has been sliced open, has not totally healed, the expansion necessary may cause undue strain. It may cause tearing. Better safe than sorry.

But for sure, if you encounter another baby in breech position close to delivery or at delivery time, do the cat yoga pose to encourage the baby to turn naturally before agreeing to a C-section.

BTW, you may want to find a doctor who isn't so quick to want to cut you open (which they make more money doing than with a regular birth) simply because the baby is in the breech position.

Many women have successfully turned their breech babies around with a simple yoga pose called "The Cat". This is a simple exercise where the women gets on all fours (hands and knees. The hands and arms are straight and placed directly under the shoulders. The legs are spread as far apart as the hands. The woman then starts in neutral position...back straight neck straight, head looking down. Then she arches her back slowly like a cat does , all the way as high as she can go. Next she slowly lowers her belly arching her back in the opposite direction with her neck and head held up....looking to the ceiling. She repeats this process slowly several times for 5 - 10 mins. If necessary several times a day until the baby naturally turns itself in the womb.

Any OB-GYN doctor that doesn't know this exercise and recommend it, but would rather cut your stomach open is not worth their weight in salt!

Better safe than sorry.. However, i you do not choose to use birth control and become pregnant before the recommended length of time, just remember to tell the doctor how many months t has ben since the C-section was done.

Terra - posted on 06/23/2012



19 and are both great sites to help educate you on VBACs.

User - posted on 06/17/2012




two years is proper healing time according to my midwife and I had a natural home birth, so I think c-section you would want to wait at least that long.

Tyrae - posted on 02/14/2011




Thank you all. I was just wondering if my doctor was just wanting me to wait for no reason. After my first miscarriage I was told not to get pregnant again for at least 6 months so that my body could heal from it. It took 9 months for me to get pregnant again, and than I lost it. I figured screw it after that one and didn't wait before trying again. I got pregnant again 2 months later and carried my daughter to full term. The 6 month wait seemed pointless to me after that.

I was hoping to wait at least 2 years to have another one anyways, just so that I could get more work under my belt so I could have a nice amount of Mat leave come in during that time. But I was just wondering in case I accidentally did get pregnant that I wouldn't have to give up the baby (I am very against abortions!) because of health reasons.

Thank you all so much for your input!

Alison - posted on 02/14/2011




For a VBAC, I think the two births should be at least 2 years apart. Don't be in a rush honey. Enjoy your baby!

Kyla - posted on 02/10/2011




im pregnant for the second time and my daughter is only nine months old my doctors has not told me anything not to get pregant right away again, I did deliever my daugther not threw c section. And im not sure what doctor told you not to have sex for months after your baby is born. I was told at my 6 week exam if i felt ready for it to go for it. I think it all is how your body feels. I would seat down with your doctor and got all the facts and than make a decison.

Stifler's - posted on 02/10/2011




I was 12 weeks pregnant with a 9 month old... I don't recommend it.

Sneaky - posted on 02/10/2011




1) Take your doctors advice - they know if you have been stitched internally or not which will make a difference to how fast and well your uterus heals.

2) It is common for a scarred uterus to be unable to support a baby for a full nine months, which is why getting pregnant too soon can lead to a low birth weight baby (eg as a result of premature birth) BUT even though your uterus 'shrinks' back to size within a few weeks or months, one of the dangers of getting pregnant again within a year is that the uterus muscles are still weak which means that the new bub has more room to grow and you may get an over sized baby (this happened to a friend of mine) as an added bonus the scar tissue in your uterus does not stretch so it can be very painful to have a big baby in there (this happened to my cousin).

3) If you really want to attempt a VBAC then you need to have a healthy and uncomplicated pregnancy. Giving your body a chance to recover (even after a natural birth the recommended length of time before trying again is 12 months), can only help you attain that goal.

Good luck!

Christy - posted on 02/10/2011




I got a c section w/ the first, got pregnant when first was 6 months old, and had a 2nd c section when he was 14 months old. They are telling you this to be safe, they don't want your uterus to rupture during your pregnancy with your second child, which could kill you and baby.

Louise - posted on 02/10/2011




I think this is just a safeguard to the medical profession. I had a c section and I was not told to wait at all. The only thing I was told to wait for was sex and that seemed pointless when you are stitched from side to side sex is the last thing on your mind! I have to say it was a good year before I felt fully healed from my c section as the scar was very tender until about then. Women do have babies sooner than recommended and are fine. I don't really think they can use miscarriage as a reason to wait as 1 in 4 pregnancies end in miscarriage any way. I think follow your heart if you feel ready and prepared to carry another child then go for it.

Stifler's - posted on 02/09/2011




They say you should wait at least a year anyway for a vaginal birth. Most people don't though.

[deleted account]

They mean before getting pregnant.

The reason is you have a higher chance of miscarrying. I was told a year, but she would have prefered 18 months. My recent miscarraige was unrelated to my c-section 12 months prior.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms