Some pregnancy issues after 35 may happen, although many families delay pregnancy and deliver healthy babies. After the age of 35 risks increase.
Pregnancy issues after 35
It may take a longer time for the woman to get pregnant
Women have a limited number of eggs in each ovary, when they reach their mid-to-late 30s, the eggs decrease in quantity and quality.
As women get older, eggs aren’t fertilized as easily as they were at younger ages.
If you are older than 35 and don’t become pregnant for six months, ask your healthcare provider(gynecologist) for advice.
Having twins are more common
The chance of having twins increases with age, hormonal changes cause the release of more than one egg at the same time.
The risk of gestational diabetes increases:
This type of diabetes occurs only during pregnancy and it’s more common in older age.
People with gestational diabetes should maintain controlled blood sugar. Some women may also need medication to help control their blood sugar.
If gestational diabetes is left untreated, it may cause the growth of a baby larger than average which will increase the risk of injuries during delivery. Also, it can increase the risk of premature birth and complications for the child after birth so it will be one of the most difficult pregnancy issues after 35.
Increased risk of having high blood pressure during pregnancy
Developing high blood pressure during pregnancy is more common in older age.
If you have high blood pressure during pregnancy you should visit your healthcare provider more than regularly and he should control your blood pressure along with the growth of your baby.
Also, you may deliver your baby earlier than your birth date to avoid complications such as (preeclampsia) which is one of the most challenging pregnancy issues after 35 to the mother.
Increased risk of premature birth and having a baby with low weight
A premature baby may need Incubation (NICU) to deal with complicated medical problems which may continue with him as being older.
Increased the chance of having a C-section
One of the pregnancy issues after 35 is a higher risk of pregnancy complications that may lead to C-section delivery.
Increased risk of chromosomal disorders
Babies of older mothers have a higher risk of certain chromosomal disorders causing many syndromes such as (Down syndrome).
If you are age 35, the risk increases but by age 45 the risk is higher so Down syndrome is one of the pregnancy issues after 35 most happen.
Increased risk of pregnancy loss (labor)
The risk of miscarriage increases with age.
This is because of chromosomal disorders or medical conditions.
It may be also due to the decreased quality of eggs in older age.
At age of 35, the chance of early miscarriage is about 20%. By age 45, the chance is about 80%.
Placenta Previa is one of the pregnancy issues after 35 that happens when the placenta covers all or part of the cervix. This can lead to increased bleeding during delivery.
Women in their 40s are three times more likely to have placenta problems than women in their 20s.
How I can avoid pregnancy issues after 35
Consult a doctor
Before deciding on pregnancy, take an appointment with your healthcare provider to talk about your overall health.
He will give you advice and discuss the lifestyle you should follow to have eggs with high quality to increase fertility and the chance of pregnancy.
Also, you can ask him about options if you have problems getting pregnant.
Take essential vitamins
Take essential vitamins before and during pregnancy at least 400 micrograms of folic acid, it’s the best vitamin you should take during the first 3 months of pregnancy which can help prevent defects in your baby’s brain and spinal cord.
Some women need more than 400 mcg to protect their baby against birth defects but not more than 1000 mcg without asking their doctor. (the doctor may prescribe folic acid (4000mcg) for women with a history of a child with neural tube defects).
You should take other essential vitamins such as iron, vitamin B12, and omega 3 to help you avoid pregnancy issues after 35.
Take care of yourself and your diet
Following healthy life and a healthy diet will help you manage most of your pregnancy issues after 35 and also, help you avoid pregnancy-related diabetes and high blood pressure.
Your baby’s health is affected by your health so, the healthier you are the better he will be.
Eat a healthy diet rich in nutrients that you need (low-fat dairy products, fruits, vegetables, calcium-rich food which will keep your health and bones healthy and avoid problems in child teeth germs).
If you have a chronic health problem such as diabetes or high blood pressure, you should visit your internal doctor and don’t skip your doctor visits.
The internal doctor will manage your condition before you get pregnant. so, avoiding pregnancy issues after 35.
Gain the right amount of weight
Avoid increasing in weight over the amount of weight your doctor suggests(the accepted overweight is 25-35 pounds).
If you are overweight before pregnancy your doctor may suggest you gain about 15-25 pounds.
Obese women should gain about 11-20 pounds.
The right amount of weight lowers the risk of early birth and decreases the risk of having gestational diabetes and high blood pressure, common pregnancy issues after 35.
Do some suitable exercises
You can ask your doctor for reviewing your exercise program. Regular physical activity can help you ease discomfort during pregnancy and improve your overall health and also can help you increase muscle strength, which helps with labor and childbirth.
Stop smoking and drinking alcohol before and during pregnancy
Before pregnancy, they decrease the quality of eggs, and during pregnancy, they increase the risk of mental and physical defects for your baby.
Smoking also increases the risk of having a low-weight baby, which is more common in older women.
Avoid taking any medication without asking your doctor
Taking some medicines may affect your baby.
Prenatal testing for chromosomal conditions
Ask your healthcare provider about prenatal screening.
The screening test is called the prenatal cell-free fetal DNA (cffDNA) screening. It’s a method to screen for certain chromosomal conditions in a developing baby, such as Down syndrome, trisomy 13, and trisomy 18.
Diagnostic tests such as chorionic villus sampling and amniocentesis can help know about the risk of specific chromosomal conditions.
But these tests carry a slight risk of miscarriage, your healthcare provider will help you choose the best test for your case.
You should follow routine prenatal tests during pregnancy
Routine tests are blood tests; blood sugar tests, called (glucose monitoring) and CBC for hemoglobin (HB).
Also, routine ultrasound is important.
If you are in the mid or end of your 30s, you can avoid pregnancy issues after 35 by following a healthy lifestyle, routine visits to your healthcare provider, and following his instruction to get a healthy baby in his birth time.
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