Pregnant at 40 – what you should know about late pregnancy

The life and work situation of many couples has changed a lot in recent years. More and more frequently, the desire to have children is postponed to an older age as a result.


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While the average age of the mother at the birth of her first child in 1970 was still about 24 years in western Germany and about 23 years in eastern Germany, first-time mothers in Germany in 2018 were on average 30 years old.

As a result, the proportion of first-time pregnant women over 40 also increased. However, as you get older, the chance of a successful pregnancy decreases.

Pregnant over 40 – the natural way?

Only about two to seven percent of women beyond 40 become pregnant spontaneously. This means that for every 100 couples who have had unprotected sex, two to seven women become pregnant.

From 45 the rate is even as low as 0.2 percent. By comparison, women between the ages of 20. and 25. At the age of 40, the rate is around 30 percent.

Fertility in old age

Woman pregnant holds cloth teddy

The Fertility of the woman decreases continuously with increasing age. On the one hand, this concerns the total number of eggs and, consequently, the number of eggs of good quality.

In addition, the Production of female hormones back, which also reduces the likelihood of conception. Ovulation occurs less frequently and cycles become more irregular until they finally stop altogether.

Still there are no general age limit up to which a woman can become pregnant as long as there are still fertile eggs in the ovaries.

Benefits of late motherhood

Today, a Pregnancy at over 35 years normal in our society. Even a pregnant woman in her early 40s is no longer unusual if she receives good medical care. Not the biological age, but the actual Health status of the mother and father are crucial.

The decision to start a family late in life also has AdvantagesParents are more likely to have a higher education, be well established in their careers and live in economically stable circumstances. Also the higher life experience of old parents due to their age can have a positive effect on the development of the child.

In addition, studies show that a late birth increases the life expectancy of the mother. However, it is not certain whether there is a causal relationship here.

Tips to get pregnant faster at 40 plus

Man and woman ride a bicycle

A healthy lifestyle improves the chance for women to fulfill their desire to have a child beyond the age of 40. This includes a healthy Mediterranean diet rich in vitamins and fiber instead of fast food.

You should avoid being overweight or underweight, regularly Sport – However, do not engage in extreme sports – do not smoke and do not drink alcohol.

Important are the Checking thyroid function and the uptake of Folic acid. Women with relevant – such as internal – chronic diseases should be optimally medicated and try to reduce another important factor, stress, as much as possible.

Late paternity – promoting the man’s ability to conceive

The Age of the father also plays a role in the desire of old parents to have children. With increasing age the Sperm count from. After a maximum between the 30. and 40. After the age of 130 million sperm on average, this number decreases beyond the age of 50. of life to about 25 percent.

Also the Sperm quality reduces continuously in old age. Stamina and agility decrease and the shape changes. This makes it more difficult for the individual sperm to reach the egg in the fallopian tube and fertilize it.

In order to influence this age-related process favorably, the older man with the desire to have children – like the woman – should also use his Optimize lifestyle and minimize harmful factors such as smoking, alcohol and obesity, exercise and eat healthy food.

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