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Planning a Pregnancy After Age 35


woman looking at pregnancy test results



In most parts of life, women in their 30s are not considered "of advanced age."  

But when you're planning a pregnancy, being over 35 can make things more challenging.

Female fertility starts to decrease many years before menopause and the change is most pronounced after age 37. That can make it hard to conceive. It can also pose risks, such as:

  • Increased risk of having a baby with an inherited disease or condition. Because it is carried through the genes, this is known as a genetic abnormality.
  • Greater chance of complications such as diabetes, high blood pressure and the need for caesarean birth.
  • Increased risk of miscarriage.

In spite of these risks, when it comes to pregnancy, age is less important than your overall health, nutrition, lifestyle, medical and family history, and the quality of your medical care.

If you’re over 35 and curious about your chances of having a healthy baby, talk to your healthcare provider about prenatal genetic screening and genetic counselling.

Links and Resources:

HealthLink BC: High Risk Pregnancy

Last Updated: August 2, 2013