New "studies" stating that 27 is now considered on the cusp of “advanced age” (something about it getting much harder to conceive after age 26).
Researchers find the probability for pregnancy is twice as high for women between 19 and 26 when compared to women ages 35 to 39.
The previous belief was that fertility begins to drop significantly when a woman is in her early thirties.
One study shows that drop actually starts to happen at about age 27.
While these young women still represent a minority of infertility patients, their numbers are growing, thanks to an exploding fertility industry and an information blitz in the media and on the Internet about the risks of waiting too long to have children.
There are little recent hard data on the trend, though, so the evidence is largely anecdotal, coming from doctors and patients alike.
From 1995 to 2002 -- the most recent year for which statistics are available -- the percentage of female college graduates 22 to 29 years of age who had received fertility treatments at some point in their lives doubled, to 23 percent, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Survey of Family Growth.
At Conceive magazine, a two-year-old publication aimed at women trying to get pregnant, 46 percent of readers are younger than 30 years of age (73 percent of the readers are younger than 35) and 86 percent have college degrees or higher.
Read: Wall Street Journal Examines Reasons Why More Young Women Are Seeking Fertility Treatments
Don't think it's impossible that one day you will be told you are too old to have a baby? This is the problem when we restrict reproductive rights.
I do worry about a woman over 60 having a baby. I worry about the use of Donor eggs. I worry about the effect that all the fertility drugs have on women going thru IVF. I even worry about the effects of adoption, on the child and on the family - beyond the fact that it's better to be adopted than have no parents.
But they don't allow an older woman to adopt unless they take an older child or a special needs child. The majority of doctors won't help a woman over 45 get pregnant with her own eggs. Most RE won't even help a woman over 50 get pregnant with donor eggs. So it's not likely that there are suddenly going to be tons of women having babies in their sixties. That's why it is so sensationalized when a doctor breaks "all the rules" and helps a woman get pregnant at such an advanced age.
Who says you're too old?
It's not hard to understand the fears surrounding conception. Yes, the statistics show that a woman's fertility declines as she ages, but you must keep in mind that these numbers may have nothing to do with you.
In fact, over the last 20 years, births to women over age 40 have increased by 50%.... And in 1991, 92,000 women in the U.S. over age 40 had babies. That number continues to rise.
A lot of forty-something women don't realize how fertile they are, which may account for the fact that they are second only to women ages 18-25 in frequency of abortions. Who says your eggs are too old?
Furthermore, you should know that the vast majority of babies born to women in their forties are healthy. And in healthy women, the vast majority of pregnancies are completed without a hitch.
- Christiane Northrup, M.D., Health Wisdom for Women (July 1997)
Photo credit: Pregnant, by David Roseborough, on Flickr
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TODAY'S BOOK SUGGESTION:
Empty Womb, Aching Heart: Hope and Help for Those Struggling With Infertility
by Marlo Schalesky
-- Contains frank and emotionally resonate stories from both men and women facing the struggle of infertility.
Mother's Day is not a joyful occasion for all women, particularly those who would like to have children but cannot.
Marlo Schalesky's Empty Womb, Aching Heart: Hope and Help for Those Struggling with Infertility does for Christian women what Rabbi Nina Beth Cardin's Tears of Sorrow, Seeds of Hope: A Jewish Spiritual Companion for Infertility and Pregnancy Loss did for Jewish women: provide comfort and camaraderie in the face of infertility and pregnancy loss.
Paperback: 188 pages
Click to order/for more info: Empty Womb, Aching Heart
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More "Pregnancy Over 40" blogs to visit:
• Life Begins... - Pregnancy stories of loss, hope and help
• Pregnancy Stories by Age - Daily blog of hope and inspiration!
• You Can Get Pregnant in Your 40's - Sharing articles, discussing options and suggestions
• Stories of Pregnancy and Birth over 44 - sharing news stories I find online, for inspiration!