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Risk Pregnancy at age 40

Updated on June 13, 2011

Getting pregnant in your 40 is not easy. There are risks with pregnancy at that age or above, but there are also some advantages to put off the pregnancy. Some women are really successful to have babies in their 40s, like my friend, she had her 3rd child in her 40s and she had a beautiful and healthy baby girl.

Woman in their 40s used to be more mature in financial and emotional, and more steady in their relationship with their partner. More open and willing to give breastfeeding and etc. But sometime there are risks to have baby in that age.  Pregnancy at 40s is high risk not just for mom but also for the baby.
Some of the risks are :

1. Hypertension (Preeclampsia)

The normal blood pressures in a non-pregnant condition is below 140/90, or about 120/80 to 140/90. And if you're pregnant, the blood pressures tend to be a little lower, from 90/50 to 110/70. Mine used to be 100/65, but if you have hypertension during the pregnancy, it may cause serious complications for mother and baby.
Some women do have problems with hypertension during pregnancy. Some have before pregnancy, others develop during pregnancy.

High blood pressure can damage a woman's kidneys, liver, and brain. This may cause low birth weight for the baby. Because the fetus can not get enough nutrients, for the oxygen supply is affected by the constricted blood vessels in the uterus.
Hypertension can also cause a premature delivery, before 9 months or 37 weeks of pregnancy. Babies are at increased risk for health problems during the newborn period and lasting disabilities, like cerebral palsy and difficulties in learning things.
Hypertension may cause heavy bleeding and shock which are dangerous for both mother and the baby.

2. Bleeding during delivery (post partum bleeding)

Postpartum bleeding is normal, every new mom have it but you may take it seriously when you have what it calls a late postpartum hemorrhage or a delayed postpartum. It is a bleeding that occurs between 24 hours and 12 weeks after childbirth.

If this happen, you may call for help. You may call help if you're bleeding continuously more than one sanitary pad in an hour (I remembered the nurse told me this and thank God it did not happen to me).
Take some serious action if you have signs of shock, like lightheadedness and you feel weak, rapid heartbeat, rapid breathing, restless, and confusion.

3. You may lose your energy during delivery.

4. Fetal Abnormalities

Birth defects directly related to maternal age is Down syndrome / Down's Syndrome which is caused by chromosomal abnormalities.

To detect Down's Syndrome can be done by examination of ultra sonography (USG) and blood tests (levels of Alpha Feto Protein and Human Chorionic Gonadotropin). That is why the recommended age of safe delivery is 25 to 35 years. But the couples who still want children, it can still be tolerated provided that during pregnancy the mother must be in good control and no abnormalities that endanger the mother and fetus.

Problems arising during pregnancy spots must be ensured by ultrasound. When a fetus based on ultrasound results are good then the pregnancy can continue, but if the fetus is conceived does not develop (Blighted Ovum) it must be removed with medication or curettage.

But still, there are many women who have baby in their 40s and both are okay. So, although I suggest to have baby in your 25s-35s but if you maintain a good quality of life and your health is good I think it's fine to have baby in 40s. And now the health technology is also support this. Just ask the gynecologist.


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    • profile image

      Julian Caldwell 

      9 years ago

      cerebral palsy is incredibly challenging to exist with. Congratulations on making a amazing resource to spread the knowledge on this horrible disease.

    • FOREX NINJA profile image


      9 years ago

      An excellent article which is very well shared and quite informative.I love and enjoyed reading this article.Thanks for sharing.

    • febriedethan profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Indonesia

      thank's for visiting Jacob :)

    • jacobkuttyta profile image

      Siny J 

      10 years ago from Delhi, India

      nice information


    • febriedethan profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Indonesia

      David Segam, hi thank you for visiting. Pregnancy at 4os really need big attention, you're right!

    • profile image

      DAvid Segam 

      10 years ago

      One of my colleague's wife was telling me her truth experience of 40 years old pregnancy, the first priority of doctor recommendation was to scan the baby and collect some tissue to check whether the mother is healthy or not. Well there are a lot of precaution to be aware!

    • febriedethan profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Indonesia

      Hi mse, congratulation to you! I believe that most women in their 40s are more mature and patience :) I agree, children are really blessing. Thank you for visiting!

    • mse profile image


      10 years ago from texas

      I had my son at 41. He is my absolute joy. And I am much more patient and appreciative of every moment at this age than I was with my girls when I was younger. Children are a blessing at any age.

    • febriedethan profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Indonesia

      Prasetio, hi! good to see u, thank you for nice comment, yes pregnancy at 40s or up is quite risky, but I think it depends also in mom's health, do not worry too much and keep ask for gynecologist advises.

      Hi Diana, you're most welcome, I think your book is a great resources for this topic and easy to understand, thank you for visiting and have a great day!

      Ingenira, thank you :)

      Dewanto, I think it depends on the mother's decision. If she thinks she can manage it then she will be ok with that, on that age, usually woman has more experience to take care of a baby and she may take assistant to help her like the baby sitter etc.

      Just make sure that the mother's health condition is ok to have pregnancy at that age.

      Brother Dave, born as a man maybe don't have to worry about that, but man also needs to make a decision about this. Well, at least help his partner to make a decision about ready or not to have pregnancy at 40s, considers about his partner's health condition, and many more.

      Thank you for all the comments, happy hubbing!

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 

      10 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Thank God I was born a Man, so I don't have to worry myself about all of this.

      Brother Dave.

    • dewanto profile image


      10 years ago from Jakarta

      i just wondering about the baby...

      is there okay to take care the child in that age?

      aren't they very busy to manage the family?

      pardon me, i think i need to learn a lot about this :D

      thank you....

    • Ingenira profile image


      10 years ago

      very informative. Thanks !

    • profile image

      Diana Raab 

      10 years ago


      Thank you for referencing my new book YOUR HIGH RISK PREGNANCY. I am glad you find it to be a good resource.


      Diana Raab

    • prasetio30 profile image


      10 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Really nice information. I heard many times that pregnancy at age 40 is very risky and dangerous for the mom and the baby also. But I found something new from this hub. It give me new knowledge. I'll bookmark this one. And I am glad to share it to my family or my friend. keep on produce informative hub. Have a nice day,Febie. Take care!


    • febriedethan profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Indonesia

      hello,hello, you're welcome :)

      RevLady, nice to see you and God Bless u

      BJ Benson, Thank you :)

    • BJBenson profile image


      10 years ago from USA

      Good information, keep up the good work.

    • RevLady profile image


      10 years ago from Lantana, Florida

      Great information. Thank you.

      Forever His,

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      10 years ago from London, UK

      That is an excellent hub. Great information and good advice. Thank you.


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