Advanced Maternal Age… what a cruel sounding diagnosis!! But ladies over 35, are exactly that (I am only 1 year behind ya)! Now days we millennial gals are out in the world accomplishing goals, building careers, and chasing dreams over seas. Unlike our mother’s and grandmothers, having a husband and kids is not numero uno on our to do lists. And that’s okay!! However, our ovaries are not listening when we claim that “40 is the new 30.”
What exactly comes along with waiting to have a baby? Well that depends on you. Some women will have a harder time actually becoming pregnant because we are born with a specific amount of eggs, and when they are gone, they are gone!
One of the biggest factors is that the older we get, the more likely we are to have health issues like diabetes and high blood pressure, these types of issues can make pregnancy harder and put us and our babies at risk. Other risk that increase with age are miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, c-sections, pre-term birth, and chromosomal anomalies such as down syndrome. Remember, these are general risk that increase with age. You may or may not be affected by some or any of these.
On the flip side, women who wait until their mid-30’s to have babies are more likely to have a purposeful approach to pregnancy and therefore be better prepared, have a better diet and have better breast feeding rates! These women are also shown to be more highly educated.
If you are creeping up on 35 or are already there and do see children in your future, talk with your provider at your next visit. She can give you more information, explain your specific health risks, & counsel you on available screening options. Together, you can come up with a plan and make sure you are at your optimal health before conceiving.
With all that being said, I salute every woman deciding the direction for their own life! If you choose to have a baby at 25 or 35 it is your choice. We are amazing and yes we can have it all! Just keep the biology in mind.
From your friendly neighborhood nurse.