Pregnancy Over 40 Risks and Complications

Today, the women folk have much more freedom to decide what is best for them than ever before in history. Women are coming forward in every walk of life and are proving their worth.

In this age, you can see women break ceilings everywhere and do just as good as men no matter where they are. But this also means that marriage, pregnancy and childbirth often take a back seat to other priorities in life.

pregnancy over 40 risks and complications

The choice of having a baby later in life is the best choice if the woman deems it to be so. A woman should only have a child when she is mentally, physically and financially ready for it and age should not be stopping you from following your plans.

With today's technology and the advancements of medical science, 'turning the ticking clock' is not unattainable. A woman can welcome motherhood any time she wants provided she is healthy and is physically fit to carry her pregnancy.

But it is also important to note that nature plays a big role here. Nature dictates that women get less fertile as they come close to their menopause. Any treatment to have a child and raise your fertility will come with a set of complications and risks.

It is important to be knowledgeable about these too in case you are planning to postpone your pregnancy beyond 40 years of age.

Today, we shall talk about the complications that come up when trying to get pregnant after 40 years of age. Read on to know more.

  1. You May Develop High Blood Pressure Or Hypertension
  2. Pre-eclampsia
  3. Gestational Diabetes
  4. Placenta Previa
  5. Placental Abruption
  6. Multiple Birth
  7. Miscarriage
  8. The Death Of The Mother
  9. Chromosomal Defects In The Baby
  10. An Older Woman May Find Pregnancy And Child Rearing Draining
  11. Financial Troubles

• You May Develop High Blood Pressure Or Hypertension

If you get pregnant after 40, it may raise health problems which would have only emerged much later in life. One of these health problems is high blood pressure or hypertension. The reason behind this is that the weight gain during pregnancy will cause your blood pressure to increase; especially if you already have a borderline hypertension.

The raised levels of progesterone can also be a contributing factor. Peripartum Cardiomayopathy is also an ailment that can cause heart failure in women who are trying to get pregnant.

• Pre-eclampsia

Pre-eclampsia is a condition that is associated with pregnancy. This condition can be seen in women of any age but the risk rises exponentially in women who become pregnant in their 40s.

High blood pressure and protein in urine are the characteristics of this condition. This condition can even be fatal for both the mother and the baby if the mother has a seizure.

• Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is a condition that develops when the woman is pregnant. The hormones of pregnancy make the body unresponsive to insulin. The risk of gestational diabetes skyrockets once the woman is older than 40 years of age.

The baby may end up having low blood sugar at birth. This may lead to problems like breathing troubles, brain damage and seizures in the baby after birth.

• Placenta Previa

Placenta Previa is a condition where the placenta is implanted at the bottom of the cervix and it covers the cervix. In such cases, the cervix and the uterus become scarred and the placenta itself may be abnormal. The baby cannot be born via a normal delivery as the cervix is blocked by the placenta and needs a c-section to be delivered. Too much blood loss during the delivery is a huge risk too. This condition is too seen more in women above 40.

• Placental Abruption

Placental abruption is when the placenta detaches from the uterine lining before birth. This causes a danger to the life of both the mother and the baby. The mother in most of these cases is past the age of 40.

• Multiple Birth

The chances of having a pregnancy with multiple babies increase after the age of 40. This is the case especially with women who undergo IVF treatments to become pregnant.

Premature birth, fetal deaths and miscarriages are very common in these cases. The chances of developing problems with the eye, lung, brain or the digestive system are more too.

• Miscarriage

The chances of a pregnancy ending with a miscarriage are more when the mother is over 40. Miscarriages can happen at any age but the chances of seeing abnormal eggs in older women are more. Such eggs may not be able to sustain a viable pregnancy for long and may end in a miscarriage.

• The Death Of The Mother

While it is rather unlikely to happen if the pregnant woman receives proper care and treatment, maternal death is a probability when it comes to having a baby after the age of 40. Other things that increase the chances of maternal death along with age are hypertension, obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases.

• Chromosomal Defects In The Baby

As mentioned earlier, older women tend to have damaged eggs. If these eggs do go on to have a viable pregnancy, the baby has an increased chance for having chromosomal defects like Down's syndrome.

Babies with such problems may be born special with mental abnormalities of varying levels. Other birth defects have also been seen in babies who were born to women older than 40. If you are an older woman who is pregnant, you should take tests to determine the well-being and health of the baby.

• An Older Woman May Find Pregnancy And Child Rearing Draining

If you look at the general health factors, you will see that pregnancy and raising a child can still be tough on a woman past the age of 40. Raising a baby calls for a lot of energy and vitality.

They need high maintenance and they constantly demand your time and attention. A woman who is past their 40s may not be able to muster such levels of energy. They will need to rest and relax a lot. They should remember to care for themselves too.

• Financial Troubles

A baby and caring for him can cause a lot of financial drain. You may have to take time off or may have to decide to become a stay at home mom to care for your little one. Multiple children can add to your financial woes. You may have to face all these troubles when you have low resources of energy and when most of your friends are settled with grown up children.

This can cause you to be frustrated and depressed. The treatments to have a baby are expensive in its own too. So, before deciding to have a baby after 40 years of age, make sure your finances are in order.

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