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Many women consider that 30’s is the right time to get pregnant because you have settled in your career, have financial stability, are more experienced and are wise enough to deal with the challenges of motherhood. Thanks to increased financial independence, job security, and late marriages, women are having children later rather than earlier nowadays.
Before you decide to delay your pregnancy, please keep in mind that the chances of getting pregnant after 30 begin to reduce due to biological changes.
Chances of Getting Pregnant in Your 30s
Your chances of successful pregnancy after 30 (30-34) are still as high as about 86%. On the downside, the risk of miscarriage has also risen to 20%. In most cases, couples don’t need fertility treatment in their early 30s. But doctors suggest that you should still visit your gynaecologist for a check-up when you are planning a baby, and pinpoint if there are any problems. Your chances of pregnancy during your late 30s (35-39) are still quite high, but lower than those in your early 30s, at 78% (particularly if you are under 37). However, the risks of miscarriage, Downs syndrome or abnormal pregnancy increase.
While most women trying for a baby have 15-20% chance of conceiving in a month, some (around 30%) may take a year or more. Doctors suggest a visit to a specialist if you have been trying for 6 months as you may need In Vitro Fertilization (IVF).
If you are not ready to get pregnant even in your late 30s, don’t worry. Thanks to medical advancements, you can freeze your eggs up until age 40 and have a good chance of pregnancy even in your mid-40s.
Pros and Cons of Conceiving in Your 30s
If you are considering putting off your decision to start a family, here are some facts which may help you make a decision:
The pros of having a baby after 30 include the following:
- Financial stability – This is perhaps the biggest reason why women choose to have children in their 30s. In your 30s, you are most probably settled in your career. You have worked for at least 5-7 years and have made all the money mistakes a 20-something year old makes. Now you are older, wiser, capable of saving money and making better financial decisions. Expensive baby items, diapers, nannies are not likely to make you break out in a sweat.
- Relationship stability – By the time you are in your 30s, chances are, you are in a stable healthy relationship. Most women prefer to wait for a couple of years after marriage to get to know their husbands and discover themselves. Just think of the initial few years of marriage with its difficulties and adjustments and throw a baby in the mix!
- More experienced – Just think back to what you were when you were 23. Barely more mature than a child! By the time you are in your 30s, you have travelled, worked, lived and gained more experience. You are wiser, calmer and can provide more support for your child.
- Having a support group – If you have a baby at 25, chances are you will be the only mom amongst your friends as most women are waiting till their 30s. You will find you are either running to your parents or to other much older women for advice. Having a baby in your 30s means a support group of finding same-aged and like-minded mothers.
- You’ll look and feel younger- Most mothers admit that having children made them age faster. If you are having a baby at twenty-four then by the time you are thirty-two, you have a 6-year old on your hands. Most of your friends will just start having babies making them appear much younger.
There may be certain tough situations you have to deal with if you plan a late pregnancy. Common pregnancy complications after 30 include:
- Take longer to conceive: After 30, some women may find it difficult to conceive. As the female body matures, ovulation becomes more erratic, which may result in infertility.
- Lifestyle diseases: As you grow older many problems such as thyroid, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure start to creep in which affect you and your baby’s health and increases the risk of a premature delivery.
- Develop pregnancy complications: You are at a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes or high blood pressure during pregnancy. You will need to follow a strict diet plan and exercise and visit your doctor regularly.
- Need for a C-section: Pregnancy complications in the 30s also include problems such as sustained labour pain due to problems like:
- The cervix isn’t opening properly
- The baby movements are not right
- The contractions are not powerful enough to get the baby out
These situations may warrant a C-section.
- Higher risks of miscarriage: The risks of miscarriage and stillbirth increase during late 30s pregnancy, perhaps due to a decrease in the quality of the eggs.
- Health of your baby: A pregnancy in early 30s puts your baby’s health at a greater risk. Babies born to older women often run the risk of acquiring genetic problems like Down’s syndrome or a spinal cord defect. Doctors conduct an amniocentesis test and regular ultrasounds to make sure that your baby is healthy.
Things to Do While Planning to Get Pregnant in 30s
Below are a few tips on how to prepare for pregnancy after 30:
- Go off the pill – This one is most obvious. If you use a contraceptive pill, stop using it for a couple of months before you start trying to get pregnant.
- Stop smoking/ drinking – Avoid smoking and drinking while trying to conceive as well as the pregnancy itself for a healthy baby. Ask your partner to cut down on smoking and drinking as it can lower sperm count in men.
- Lose weight – If you are on the heavier side try to lose weight. It will be easier to get pregnant and you will have fewer risks and complications.
- Visit your doctor – Many experts recommend visiting a doctor before you start trying to become pregnant to rule out any chronic illness like asthma or diabetes. After pregnancy, regular check-ups will monitor you and your baby’s health and pinpoint any problems.
- Be careful about medicines – If you take medicines, be sure to consult your doctor as many medicines are not suitable for pregnant women.
- Maintain a healthy diet – Don’t forget to eat healthily: Eat fresh fruits, vegetables and drink lots of water.
- Exercise – Enroll in exercise classes for pregnant women to make sure you are healthy.
Other Facts Related to Pregnancy in 30s
- Sexual positions don’t affect your chances of conception
No study can confirm that any one position is better than the other in achieving pregnancy.
- Men play an important part
The age of the father also affects the time it takes to conceive. About 15% of men beyond 35 fail to impregnate their wives after a year of trying. A healthy lifestyle will help a couple to get pregnant faster.
- Miscarriages are more common than you think
Around 30% of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. Unfortunately, due to the taboo associated with it, very few people talk about it openly.
Don’t fret if you are not ready to have a child in your 20s. Remember, medical science has advanced tremendously and most women are giving birth to happy healthy babies in their 30s and even mid-forties. As per doctors, if you take care of your health, eat right and exercise regularly, you can have a happy pregnancy and a healthy baby at any age.