There’s no perfect time to get pregnant. Many people believe that having a baby after the age of 35 can come with increased risks. This might mean you think not many women get pregnant after this age. In fact, many women are having babies in their 40s, and even later, in part due to getting married later.
Getting Pregnant In Your Midlife
One of the main barriers to getting pregnant in midlife is your fertility. Some women get pregnant with no issues, but in your 40s and beyond you are less likely to get pregnant easily. You’re more likely to need fertility treatments the older you are when you’re trying to get pregnant.
Staying Pregnant In Your Midlife
All pregnancies come with the risk of miscarriage, but that risk does get higher with age. Part of the problem is that the older you are, the more likely it is you have a chronic condition.
Chronic conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, and thyroid disease can cause complications with a pregnancy and might increase the risks of miscarriage, pregnancy loss, or stillbirth. This is one of the big reasons that taking proper care of yourself pre-conception is very important.
Meet with your doctor before you start trying to get pregnant. Their advice can help you to minimize the risks involved, and help you get any chronic conditions under control to better your chances of getting and staying pregnant. You can also review any medication that you’re taking to make sure it’s safe to take while pregnant. You might be able to find alternatives to switch to, and still have time to make sure they work for you before you start trying to get pregnant.
Pregnancy Risks After 40
Pregnancy after the age of 40 is potentially more complicated than when you were younger. The healthier you are at the beginning of the pregnancy, the less likely it is that you will experience complications. However, you should remember that even healthy women can have complications in pregnancy.
As well as common problems like nausea, backache, and heartburn in pregnancy, women over 40 are more likely to experience:
- Cesarean birth
- Low birth weight
- High blood pressure
- Gestational diabetes
- Premature labor
- Preterm birth
If you get pregnant after 40, you are also more likely to have twins or triplets. This could be chalked up to the fertility treatments, but there is a natural increase in the rate of multiple pregnancies in older women who get pregnant without fertility medication or treatments. You should keep this in mind if you’re planning to get pregnant.
The main worry for most people is that the baby will be healthy. A baby that results from a pregnancy after the age of 40 is more likely to have some complications, but the good news is that with modern medicine, good care, and a watchful eye, most of these babies are born healthy. Keep in mind that an increased risk of complication is not the same as that complication being guaranteed.
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