How Old Is Too Old to Have a Baby? Here’s What You Need to Know
Unlike the past when people used to get pregnant at an early age, today, most people get babies when they are older (between 35-40 years). So the big question is: how old is it too old to have a baby? This article will discuss in-depth fertility and age to help you make an informed decision when planning when to have kids.
When is the best time to get pregnant?
There is no rule as to when a woman should get pregnant, and it all depends on your personal choice and preparedness. Most people nowadays consider many factors before deciding when to have a child. Before having a baby, the most important factors that people consider include financial stability, career, personal goal, and housing. Nobody wants to bring a new life into this world if they are not sure they can take care of the baby. That is why most people today set targets on what they must achieve first to get pregnant.
But when it comes to fertility, age plays a big role, especially for women. Research shows that a healthy woman becoming pregnant naturally at the age of 30 is around 20%. By the time a woman reaches 40 years, the chance of becoming pregnant decreases to around 5%. This clearly shows that fertility decreases with age, and there is a scientific explanation behind that.
When a girl is born, her ovaries contain all eggs she will have over her lifetime. When she reaches puberty and starts to menstruate, her age quantity decreases. As she ages, both her quantity and quality begin to decline, meaning that the older a woman gets, the harder it becomes to conceive. However, that does not mean that a woman cannot conceive when older (above 35 years old). It only becomes harder to get pregnant when you get older. So, if you are planning to have kids in the future, it is crucial to be mindful of age.
How old is it too old to have a baby?
Now the big question is, how old is too old to have a baby? As stated earlier, fertility decreases with age, meaning the older woman gets, the harder it becomes to conceive. Research shows that the risk of miscarriage among 30-year-old women is between 15%-20%, while that of a 40-year-old is between 40%-50%. The older you get, the higher the risk of losing your baby.
The risk of developing pregnancy-related conditions such as preeclampsia and gestational diabetes increases with age. Older women are also at risk of developing premature birth and giving birth through the emergency C- section.
A recent study revealed that older women are also at higher risk of developing chromosomal genetic disorders. The study found out that a woman who is pregnant at the age of 35 years or older has 1-350 chances of delivering a child with Down syndrome, while at the age of 45 years, the chances increase to 1 in 35. Additionally, as you become older, your energy tends to reduce.
However, having kids when you are older also means that you may achieve financial stability, and it also means that you are more mature hence better equipped to raise a child. That is why we insist that it is up to you to decide the right to have a baby. There is no right or wrong time, and what matters is your readiness and knowledge about the risk factors involved when you try to conceive when you are older.
Having kids after 30: how to prepare to get pregnant
If you are planning to have kids after 30, there are certain things you need to do to increase your chances of conceiving and delivering a healthy baby safely. Below are tips on how to prepare.
- Embrace a healthy lifestyle
If you plan to get pregnant after 30, you need to start embracing a healthy lifestyle. This includes eating a healthy and balanced diet, exercising regularly, and reducing the use of toxic substances. Multiple scientific studies have shown that one of the best ways to increase your chance of getting pregnant at an older age is embracing a healthy lifestyle. Being in good health increases the chance of getting pregnant and will also make your pregnancy smooth by reducing certain pregnancy-related risks. It also enables you to recover faster from childbirth.
- Take supplements
Another important thing to do if you want to get pregnant after 30 is to take prenatal supplements rich in folic acid. Folic acid plays a crucial role, especially in the first few weeks of fetal development, and can help you deliver a healthy baby. Supplements also help boost your energy level and reduce the risk of developing pregnancy-related conditions. In Australia, all prenatal vitamins and supplements are approved by the TGA. However, before you take any supplement, consult your doctor for advice.
- Educate yourself about pregnancy and delivery
Educating yourself about pregnancy and delivery will help you prepare for the upcoming changes. Learn about the changes you will experience week by week throughout your pregnancy. Also, inquire to know more about labour and delivery.
- Get professional help
When you are finally ready to conceive, you should get professional advice from a fertility expert. Seeking professional advice is beneficial, especially to women who have tried to conceive for a while but have not been successful. Also, if you have an underlying condition that could prevent you from getting pregnant, seek help from a fertility expert, especially if they have not been successful in conceiving after trying for six months.
- Ensure you have everything ready
You need to start preparing in advance for the delivery and raising of your baby the moment you discover you are pregnant. Make sure you have your hospital bag ready, and it should contain everything you need once you deliver. Having all the necessary things you need ready ahead of time will make the process seamless.
- Consider other options to getting a child
If your gynecologist reveals that you cannot get pregnant via natural conception, that is not the end of the road for you. There are other ways to become pregnant, and for instance, you can consider adopting a child.
Why family planning is important for getting pregnant
Family planning means controlling when, how, and how many kids you wish to have. Family planning is achieved through fertility management and contraception. If you want to achieve financial stability, finish your studies or pursue your career, family planning is crucial. It gives you full control of when to have kids. The main benefit of speaking to someone at the Family Planning Australia clinic include:
- It gives you a chance to further your education
- Help to reduce infant mortality
- Allows you to pursue and reach your goals
- Enhances sustainable population growth
Female fertility is at peak during ages of 20-24. However, most ladies are usually not ready to have kids at that age. If you want to have kids above the age of 20, experts recommend that you consider getting pregnant before you hit 37 years old, which will increase your chance of conceiving and delivering a healthy baby. You can also freeze your eggs before you reach 35 years and use them later when you are ready to have kids.
The bottom line is that choosing to have a child is personal. However, there are many things that you should consider age when making plans about conceiving. Getting pregnant at a younger age means faster conception and reduced risk of suffering from pregnancy-related complications.