Being a mother at 40 (something). Is it possible?
Being a mother at 40 (something). Is it possible?
Maybe when you are younger you think that being a mother at 40 is crazy. But the reality is that the years go by and it is never the right time to start your own family. It also happens that you start seeking at 30 something, it gets complicated, you start an assisted reproduction treatment. Conclusion: pregnancy at 42.
There are as many situations as there are women, and it is they who will end up writing their own story. Some will decide to educate themselves until they reach the professional stability they so desire. Others have decided to postpone it for another time, because they need to grow up before seeing someone else grow up.
There are those who have not found the ideal partner to form their life project and have decided to become single mothers. Or those who cannot. Who knows. The truth is that, nowadays, it is very common to start having children at the age of 38 or 39, to end up having them after 40.
Is it risky to become a mother at 40?
After the age of 40 it is very difficult to achieve pregnancy naturally. At 35 years of age, the so-called ovarian reserve (quality and quantity of eggs) begins to decrease.
If you are already undergoing fertility treatment, it may not exactly be a bed of roses.
But, once the test shows that you are pregnant (finally), at Vida Fertility we always recommend that you take care of yourself more than ever. It is true that a pregnancy at 45 is not the same as at 35, your body does not react the same.
An older pregnancy may be associated with increased complications such as:
- Gestational diabetes.
- Premature placenta.
- Cesarian delivery.
- Threat of premature delivery.
These are situations that, on the other hand, could also occur if you give birth at 37.
At Vida Fertility we want you to have peace of mind. That is why we always recommend that you go to a specialist for the monitoring and control of your pregnancy. That you follow all the guidelines set by your gynecologist and perform the necessary tests.
What are my chances of becoming a mother beyond the age of 40?
As the years go by, a woman’s fertility rate decreases, the miscarriage rate increases, the number of genetically healthy eggs decreases and, with it, the probability of birth defects such as Down’s syndrome increases.
After the age of 40, the fertility rate per month is only 5%, even through in vitro fertilization (IVF). Embryo biopsies performed in Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis reveal that at least 90% of the eggs of a woman over 40 have genetic abnormalities.
For this reason it is not surprising that many of our patients resort to IVF treatment with donor eggs and partner or donor sperm, if necessary. In this case the chances of pregnancy exceed 80%.
Does the risk of abnormalities in the baby increase?
As we have already mentioned in this article, becoming a mother at 40 (or older) can be linked to an increase in chromosomal abnormalities in the baby, such as Down syndrome.
However, in assisted reproduction centers there are such advanced techniques that allow the detection of certain anomalies in the embryo before it is transferred to the mother’s uterus. We are referring to Genetic Diagnosis prior to implantation.
PGT (Preimplantation Genetic Testing) is a technique for selecting embryos that detects genetic alterations before the embryo is transferred to the uterus of the future mother. We speak of PGT-A when the study is done at the chromosomal level, and PGT-M when it refers to the study of a particular gene.
To perform Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis, we need to extract several cells, through a biopsy, from embryos at the blastocyst stage (day 5-6 of embryonic development).
After the biopsy, the embryos are vitrified (frozen) until the genetic results are obtained, which takes about 3-4 weeks.
With these results, we will be able to know with certainty whether the embryos will be able to give rise to an evolving pregnancy and increase the probability of a healthy baby being born. The biopsy has no risk for the development of the embryo.
Is there any advantage to being a mother after 40?
A pregnancy at 40 is lived with more maturity, since the decision has been very meditated. In addition, it is likely that you will have economic and emotional stability that will allow you to face this stage of life with more tools at your disposal.
Moreover, experts say that mothers over the age of 40 take more care of themselves. They know that pregnancy at that age can be associated with an increase in complications and they decide to take care of their health so that this does not happen and thus favor the correct development of the baby.
Beyond the advantages, the reality is that you have already made the decision and your happiness comes from seeing your baby’s face. At Vida Fertility, we are here to help you make it happen. First of all, to help you get pregnant and then to accompany you until you have your baby in your arms.
If you want to know your chances of achieving pregnancy, consult one of our fertility specialists. Make your appointment HERE.