Having a baby later in life comes with its set of challenges - both physically and mentally. And while you’re probably worried about the pregnancy complication at a higher than average age, it is important for you to always keep in mind that while such risks exist, many can be managed with some extra care and the guidance of a good doctor.
Worrying too much or being stressed out through your pregnancy could also affect your health, so try not to let such concerns make you anxious. Keep an eye on your nutrition and eat right, ensure you get in some physical activity approved by your doctor, follow whatever precautions they recommend, and do what it takes to stay positive for better emotional and mental health. Try and enjoy this unique phase of your life to its fullest and aim at being your healthiest best for your sake and your baby’s and you should be just fine.
Greater maternal age is a risk factor for developing gestational diabetes, a condition, which, if left unchecked, could cause your baby to be much larger than average( putting him/her at greater risk of injury during childbirth), may raise the risk of premature birth, and increases chances of your having high blood pressure when pregnant. However, having a healthy pre-pregnancy weight and maintaining healthy weight gain during pregnancy, staying active, eating right, and leading a healthy lifestyle can help you ward off or keep this problem in check.
High Blood Pressure/Preeclampsia
As women get older, the risk of developing high blood pressure and associated problems like preeclampsia also go up. This can cause headaches, nausea, breathing problems, and in extreme cases could bring on seizures. Preeclampsia tends to set in during the last 3 months of pregnancy though it could sometimes happen earlier. The problem eases for most women, after delivery. In the meantime, consult your doctor on how best to manage the problem.
As you grow older, the chances of the baby having chromosome problems like Down’s syndrome goes up. If you wait till you’re 40 to have a baby, there’s a 1 in 100 chance of Down’s syndrome compared to just 1 in 1250 if you’re 25 when you conceive. This is something you can discuss with your doctor before conceiving and check for during pregnancy.
Problems with the placenta(like placenta previa, where the placenta covers the cervix partially or completely) are three times more likely when you’re in your 40s compared to your 20s. The good news is that such problems are rare.
A preterm birth, especially in the <32 weeks gestation stage is more common among older mums-to-be.
Low birth weight baby
Older women also tend to have higher chances of having a ‘small for gestational age’ baby. That is, the baby is under 2.5 kg at birth. The good news is that most low birth weight babies catch up on physical growth with other babies in the weeks following their birth.
The risk of having a miscarriage varies quite a bit depending on how old you are. As one study found, the risk is lowest when you’re 25 to 29 years old and is greatest when you’re 45 or more.
That said, do remember there are a lot of older women having babies nowadays and getting through pregnancy without encountering such complications. Focus on looking after yourself and your health and things should be fine.
Take an Accurate Pregnancy Test
It is important to know if you’re pregnant so you can start taking the additional precautions and modify your nutrient intake and activity accordingly. Don’t rely on less accurate methods like watching for physical signs of early pregnancy. Get a reliable and accurate home pregnancy test kit instead. The MamaXpert Rapid Pregnancy Detection kit is easy to use and the test can be taken anytime and anywhere without the need for a visit to the gynaecologist. What’s more, you get the results immediately, so there’s no need to wait for days to know for sure. Once you get a positive result, you can schedule an appointment with your doctor to get a scan or to discuss the next steps, any supplements you may need, and so on.
Order the MamaXpert Rapid Pregnancy Detection Kit now to check if you’re pregnant.