Having a sound knowledge of these risks and taking ample precautions can be immensely helpful, even at a later stage in life.
Conception blues. As you get older, especially after the age of 35, chances of a planned pregnancy decrease a bit and that of miscarriage increase slightly. If you have been trying repeatedly for six months without any results, consult your physician about fertility treatments.
Possible causes for infertility. Conditions that may contribute to infertility include endometriosis, a state in which the endometrium of the uterus gets inflamed and spreads to cover almost all the reproductive organs. the other causes may be , the uterine fibroids (the benign growths in the uterus), blocks of the fallopian tubes.
Genetic abnormalities. As you get older, your eggs also age and they do not divide well enough, which may lead to genetic disorders. The most common genetic disorder is known as Downs Syndrome, which causes mental retardation and defects of the heart and other organs in the baby. This risk continues to increase as you get older.
Miscarriage. Mothers above 35 are at a higher risk of a miscarriage. This happens because of the chromosomal abnormalities which cause the foetus to abort spontaneously. Like miscarriage, chromosomal abnormalities are more likely to happen if you are over 35.
Health problems during late pregnancy.
If you are above the age of 35 years, you may be at a higher risk of developing complications like gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, placenta related problems, and also bleeding problems.
Gestational Diabetes or high blood sugar level. It is a temporary form of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy. It occurs due to the hormonal changes in the body that cause impaired glucose tolerance, leading to high blood glucose levels in pregnancy. This state is called gestational diabetes. It is usually resolved after pregnancy. But babies born to mothers with this condition are larger than average, leading to complications.
Preeclampsia and eclampsia or high blood pressure. The chances of these are greater in mothers having their first baby at a later age. It may be a result of the mother having diabetes or high blood pressure before getting pregnant. Preeclampsia is a serious complication that may cause high blood pressure, swelling of the face and hands, and protein in the urine. Subsequently, it can impair the nervous system and cause seizures, stroke, or other serious complications. This condition can be dangerous for the baby as well since it reduces the flow of blood and nutrients to the foetus via the placenta.
Placental complications causing serous bleeding. In addition, placental complications tend to occur more with age. The most common of these complications is called placenta previa. In this case the placenta ends up covering part or the entire cervix (uterine opening). This can cause serious bleeding during delivery which can be dangerous for both the mother and the baby.
Labour problems. Elderly mothers are a bit more prone to prolonged second stage labour since their cervix may not dilate as easily and may also cause foetal distress. This increases the likelihood of the use of delivery intervention methods such as forceps or vacuum-assisted vaginal delivery or a C-section. The chance of stillbirth is also a little higher.
Multiple births. The probability of having twins or triplets is higher in late pregnancies, even without fertility drugs.
One should note that these are all potential risks, not necessarily universal laws. In fact, studies suggest that the outcome for the baby born of older mothers is most likely to be just as good as the babies born of younger mothers. There is no need to worry if you are aware of the conditions of late in life pregnancy.