Things to Consider when Getting Pregnant Over 40

by Deborah Cruz on April 25, 2021

Many women today are waiting on having children until they are well into their 30’s and some are even waiting until after they are 40. There are many advantages to waiting to start a family; parents are presumably more mature and better equipped to handle parenthood, parents are more financially secure and have had time to travel the world and grow in their relationship with their partner.

All of these qualities lend itself to a solid foundation for raising a family. It sounds perfect, right?

So why not wait until your late 30’s or early 40’s to have your children? There are certainly a lot of logical reasons in favor of waiting. My mother had 5 children between the ages of 23 and 29. I didn’t have my first child until I was 32.

Honestly, I don’t think I would have made a very good mother when I was still in my 20’s; I was still too self absorbed. I had my children when I was ready. I think that time is different for every woman.

Deciding to get pregnant in your late 30’s or early 40’s brings with it a lot more things to consider and the entire process may require more thoughtful effort on the part of the parents trying to conceive.

Fertility can become an issue due to aging reproductive organs, making it more difficult to conceive. Fertility drugs or in vitro fertilization may have to become a part of the equation. Suddenly, what once was fun evolves into a chore, and this strain can cause issues in the relationship between the couple.

Once the couple gets pregnant, health considerations need to be taken into account. That prenatal genetic testing that you so adamantly would have declined a few years back is now an absolute must. The possibility of conceiving a child with an incurable genetic disorder, such as Down Syndrome or Trisomy 18, has become a higher probability.

Now you have to consider what you would do if the tests come back positive. Will you be alive long enough to care for this child throughout it’s entire life? Will you be able to afford it financially? Can you do it emotionally and physically? How will this affect your future children? How will this affect your marriage? Will you carry the pregnancy to term? Will you terminate the pregnancy?

If everything is well with the baby, that is fantastic. Now, you have to take into consideration what effect pregnancy might have on your own advanced maternal health. Will you develop gestational diabetes? Will you risk developing preeclampsia? Will you have issues carrying the baby to term? Of course, these issues can happen to any woman of any age but as we get older, we are usually more susceptible to developing various ailments.

This is not to say that a woman in her 40′s cannot get pregnant and have a perfectly healthy baby. It is very likely that that is exactly what will happen. But when you are of advanced maternal age, these are just some of the things that you need to take into consideration when trying to conceive.

Did you have a child after 40? Did you have any issues compared to the pregnancies that you had when you were younger?

Photo Source: StoryvilleGirl

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Lynn Barrera April 25, 2021 at 7:47 am

I was blessed at 40 1/2 when I had my first and only child. I had a c-section because she was estimated to be so big, and she was… 11 pounds 4 ounces. I did not have gestational diabetes. I developed high blood pressure and was put on a low dose of blood pressure medicine in my last trimester and continued to take it thereafter. The c-section is a major surgery and it through my whole body out of whack…that I’m now of thyroid medication to regulate my sluggish thyroid. I was very healthy with no medications before I got pregnant. It was my price to pay for my beautiful daughter, and I’m glad I did.
Thank you for sharing the pros and cons…all is true.
Best,
Lynn

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