5 Feb 2014 | 4 min Read
Dr Puneeti Ballega Gandotra
Author | 3 Articles
Is it really more difficult to conceive a child after 35? Here are some tips on getting pregnant after 35.
Fertility does decrease as a woman grows older. The two main reasons for this are:
• The number of healthy eggs in a woman decreases with age.
• As a woman grows older, she may develop other problems, like high blood-pressure, diabetes, and obesity, which might interfere in conceiving a child.
But don’t worry! The situation is not as dire as it is usually made out to be. Here are a few things that you have to remember if you are planning to conceive your first child post 35.
Visit the doctor before you conceive and ask your doctor any questions you might have, and discuss medical histories, potential problems, and anything else on your mind. Depending on your history, the doctor will give you an idea of what might be in store for you. Get tests done to rule out any medical problems that might interfere with conception.
Record your monthly cycle over a few months, and find out when you are likely to be ovulating. Having intercourse during your fertile period will give you the best chances of conceiving, whether you are past 35 or not.
Fertility and conception depends on the individual, and every woman’s body is different. So do not take 35 as a switch, post which you will find it tough to conceive. Generally, most women don’t find it that hard to conceive even until 37 or so. It is only after 38 or 39 that it progressively gets more difficult.
Science does show that fertility decreases after 35. Statistics also indicate that women find it more difficult to conceive after 35. But what people fail to tell you is that there are thousands of women out there who have successfully conceived and borne children after 35 years of age. Without external help. This is something you should absolutely not forget! Inspiring, isn’t it?
When you are younger, you have healthier eggs. As you grow older, you might have some cycles where your ovaries don’t even release an egg. So, in general, it might take a little longer to conceive in your late thirties. That doesn’t mean you are no longer fertile, or that you will need fertility treatments. However, if you have been trying too long without results, consider consulting a doctor. The sooner you get help, the better.
When older mothers do conceive, there is a greater chance of having children with chromosome-related problems, like Down’s syndrome. The possibility of a miscarriage is also higher. The pregnancy might also be complicated, with higher instances of preeclampsia, gestational diabetes, ectopic pregnancies, and placenta previa. The actual delivery also might be slightly more taxing on the body. However, remember that it is only that the chances are higher. It doesn’t mean that you cannot have healthy pregnancies and deliveries even into your forties.
In general, a woman in good health, who takes care of her body’s nutritional and fitness needs, and who has no other medical problems, has a better chance at conceiving than a woman who isn’t. Good health also makes her better equipped to handle the stress on the body that comes with a late pregnancy. So if you’re being lazy, the time to change is now!
Unhealthy habits like smoking, drinking excessive alcohol, and the use of drugs speed up the decline of fertility, and also affect the baby’s health adversely. So steer clear of all this if you are keen on having a child.
In case you belong to that minority of women who cannot conceive a child naturally after 35, there are a number of fertility treatments to the rescue. Medical advancements are pretty good now, and you should be able to conceive with treatment or assistance. But do keep in mind that success with fertility treatments depends on several factors, including the health of the woman, and her age.
The bottom-line is that though fertility decreases as a woman approaches her late thirties, it is perfectly possible to have an easy conception and a healthy pregnancy!
Also read more about: Busted: 13 Myths Around Conceiving A Baby