Am I Too Old to Have a Baby?
The short answer: no. At any age, starting a family is a personal decision only you can make (with the help of your physician).
Today women are delaying their childbearing for various reasons. Many are marrying later in life, are furthering their education and having successful careers before starting a family. If you fall into one of these categories, do not be ashamed or afraid. Having a healthy baby may very well be in the cards for you.
In fact, I recently delivered a woman age 44 without any complications to her or her healthy child. In fact, I was older than 35 when I had my daughter.
Am I at risk?
Women who become pregnant after the age of 35 are considered “at risk” because of a collection of research that labeled these pregnancies as more likely to have abnormal outcomes. This, somewhat subjective, number is listed in literature and can make any woman a bit timid about their prospect of having a healthy baby. Keep in mind that when this research was done, there were far fewer pregnancies in this age group. It is important to also note that there was still only a small percentage leap in abnormalities in the 35 and older age range. So chances are, you and your baby will be just fine.
If you are over 35 (or any age for that matter) and are contemplating getting pregnant, you and your partner might consider the following lifestyle changes to help improve your chances:
- Quit smoking
- Improve your diet
- Lose (or gain) weight to be at your ideal number
- Give up, or reduce, alcohol intake
- Start an exercise routine
- Take prenatal vitamins
- Get a routine physical from your primary care physician