How Soon After Giving Birth Can You Get Pregnant & Other Post-Pregnancy FAQs

Posted by Kerry Nevins on

Many mothers find pregnancy to be the most exciting journey of their lives and look forward to reliving the experience all over again. I loved being pregnant but was really nauseous up to around week 13 of my first pregnancy, from then on I began to enjoy one or two ‘good days’ each week where I didn’t feel so bad. Gradually the good days increased until by 16 weeks, I was feeling 100% again. Those weeks of nausea dragged by and I dreaded feeling the same way during my next pregnancy. I needn’t have worried though because I didn’t have one bit of nausea next time around which was a massive relief! Let’s take a look at all you need to know when trying for your next baby: 

How soon can you get pregnant again?

You can become pregnant very quickly after giving birth. In some cases, it can be as early as before you’ve had your first period. The arrival of the first postpartum period can vary - from four weeks postpartum to up to six months later. Breastfeeding can delay the onset of the first period too. A concern for many new mums is when it’s safe to have sex again after the delivering a baby - typically it’s after around four to six weeks but you’ll know best when it feels ‘right’.

We’re all unique, some of us conceive very soon after giving birth, while for others, it can take much longer.

What are the risks of getting pregnant too soon?

There are several reasons why many women decide to wait a while before getting pregnant again, for example, to allow for a full physical recovery after the previous birth, and time to regain some time and energy which is essential for nurturing a newborn baby. There are some medical risks associated with becoming pregnant again very quickly, such as an increased risk of having a premature birth. It is generally recommended to leave a gap of around 18 months between pregnancies. 

Contraception options when breastfeeding

If you’re a breastfeeding mother, hoping to avoid becoming pregnant and enjoying a healthy sex life, it’s important to understand your contraception options. Breastfeeding can suppress periods but you can still become pregnant... while the chances of pregnancy are less likely, it’s definitely not foolproof so you’ll want to start using another form of contraception, especially after your baby is more than six months old or if you’re not exclusively breastfeeding.

In general, it’s best to talk with your doctor if you’re thinking about trying for another baby. There are some women who will be at greater risk if there’s only a short period of time between pregnancies (such as in women over 35). Your doctor will be able to advise the best course of action for a smooth and healthy second pregnancy. 

Good luck! :)

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