2023 Author: Anita Thornton | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 18:44
Late pregnancies are more risky than other pregnancies, but generally, if women follow their doctor's recommendations, they experience normal pregnancies.
Age and Conception
Late pregnancies are a little more risky than others, but generally, if women follow the recommendations of their doctor or midwife, they experience normal pregnancies. Once pregnant, the course is similar. Where women encounter the most challenges is during preconception.
No more doubt, the fertility rate decreases with age. Indeed, after the age of 35, the aging of the tissues and the drop in oocyte production influence the fertility rate, without destroying it. Many women decide to become a mother for the first time or to expand the family after 35 and even well into their forties. In Quebec, according to the Institute of Statistics, the average age of new mothers was 29 years old. Many first pregnancies therefore take place when the mother is over 30 years old. A new phenomenon, surely attributable in part to progress in obstetrics and new social conditions, which is observed almost everywhere in the world.world.
Of all the 74,200 new babies born in Quebec in 2004, 10,771 of them (14.5%) have a mother aged 35 or over. While the possibilities are there, the fact remains that the biological clock is ticking louder and the medical data is firm: the chances of getting pregnant are lower the older the mother is. In fact, an older woman can wait several cycles before getting pregnant compared to a woman in her twenties.
According to the He althy Women's Network, the chance of becoming pregnant after one year of regular unprotected sex is 52% at age 35. From the age of 40, the fertility rate is only 35% and at 45, 5%.
The quality of the eggs is an important aspect of the fertility adventure. A woman is born with approximately 400,000 eggs needed for her lifetime. So, at 40, she produces eggs that are exactly the same age as her… 40 years old. In addition, each month, an egg matures. Ovulation is responsible for the decline in eggs, but be aware that the majority of eggs are absorbed by the body, so that around 50 or 60 years, the quantity of eggs is dry.
Also, even if the menstrual cycle continues to be regular in the 40s, it is possible to observe that its duration shortens, which contributes to diluting the chances of fertilization.
History and perceptions
There is no ideal age to have a child. And there existsseveral reasons to wait or postpone. Claudine did not have a serious and stable partner until she was in her mid-thirties. While that of Vicky hesitated in front of the responsibilities of a future paternity. Isabelle's financial stability was not stable as Julie invested herself intensely in her career for more than ten years before emerging and thinking about having children. And like Mélanie, some women discovered the fiber of maternal instinct late in life, or like Sophie, others have been hesitating for years.
About one in five women wait until after their mid-30s to seriously begin trying for a baby. Even if it is not too late, the journey may be different than that of a woman in her early twenties. The risks of miscarriage are increased and the medical follow-up tighter. And many women wonder if by dint of hesitating, postponing or disappointed hopes they have not missed the boat. The big questions are there, but so is the intense desire.
Having a child close to forty, it is said that the woman has had time to know herself, to realize herself fully and to know what she really wants. 40 is the age of reason, the age of decisions and the age when our priorities are well established. Often, these mothers-to-be are ready to invest themselves fully, to slow down their race a little more having had time to establish themselves financially and emotionally.
However, it remains that the questions perhaps revolve more around age.“At 50, with a pre-teen, would I make it? », « What if I could not get pregnant? », « Am I ready to go to a fertility clinic if my pregnancy test never shows a long-awaited little +? », « Is adoption an alternative for us? Does it look like a child at all costs or a long-desired child?
Despite all the detours on your journey and the pitfalls, trust yourself and discuss the situation with your spouse. Read and get informed! One day, maybe soon, you will have your little baby to cuddle!
The risks of late pregnancy
No pregnancy is 100% safe for mother and child, but the older the expectant mother, the greater the risk of complications. Good medical monitoring will reduce the risks to a minimum.
All risks must be weighed against the general he alth of the expectant mother, her family history, her environment and of course, her age.
Hypertension in pregnant women aged 35 and over
After age 35, the risk of hypertension is twice as great as at age 20. It can lead to preeclampsia and endanger the life of both mother and child. When hypertension is properly diagnosed and treated, the risks are minimized.
Pregnancy diabetes higher in women aged 35 and older
As with hypertension, the risk of developing pregnancy diabetes is twice as high after the age of 35. He alth risks for mother and child are reduced if diabetes is diagnosed and treated.
Miscarriages more common in pregnant women aged 40 and over
After age 40, one in four pregnancies ends in miscarriage within the first three months.
The chances of the fetus having a chromosomal abnormality are greatest after age 35, but still less than 1%. The most common abnormality is trisomy 21, but it is not the only one. Two tests can detect them: the prenatal screening test and the amniocentesis.
Even if the majority of late pregnancies are completely normal, the he alth risks for the mother and child are higher.
Any woman who wants to become pregnant or who is expecting a baby should be seen by a doctor. The older the expectant mother, the more important the medical follow-up is.
First, the doctor will give you a complete he alth check, among other things to check your blood pressure (danger of preeclampsia) and to make sure that you do not have diabetes.
Then you will be offered a prenatal screening test which aims to calculate the risks that the fetus suffers from trisomy 21. This test costs between $200 and $400 and several insurance companies reimburse it. Depending on the results, you may be recommended amniocentesis. This exam, which is free for women ofover 35 is more accurate than the prenatal screening test, but in less than 1% of cases it causes miscarriage.
The risks of preterm birth and caesarean section have been shown to increase with age, as do bleeding during pregnancy and problems with the placenta.
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