28.08.2014

How to prepare to get pregnant after 40

Ask your doctor how to increase your chances of conceiving and what lifestyle changes you can make to assure you have a healthy pregnancy. Discuss whether you will be able to continue using any medications you are currently taking while you try to conceive and while pregnant or breastfeeding. Evaluate with your doctor which health problems are most important for you to address before pregnancy. High blood pressure can sometimes temporarily develop in pregnant women and some research suggests the risk increases with age. Sexually transmitted infections can prevent your ability to conceive, so get tested if there's any risk you have an STI. You should also strive to get extra protein, preferably in the form of lean meats, nuts, eggs, and legumes. Dairy products are also important during pregnancy due to the calcium and vitamin D they contain. There are a variety of foods that are off limits during pregnancy as they can be harmful to a fetus. Being overweight during pregnancy increases the risk for gestational diabetes and high blood pressure. Close monitoring of the fetus throughout pregnancy is important if you're over 40, as it can prevent the likelihood of pregnancy loss. Getting pregnant can be hard at the best of times but when you're over a certain age unfortunately things can get even harder. We spoke to Professor Geeta Nargund, Medical Director at Create Health, to find out all you need to know about getting pregnant after 40 so you can be as prepared as you need.
Not to paint a bleak picture but naturally risks are heightened in pregnancies after the age of 40. But there is no denying that the chances of getting pregnant naturally after the age of 40 significantly drop.


However, in older women and women with low egg reserve (high FSH or low AMH levels), Natural and Mild IVF can be more successful than conventional IVF.This isn’t just reserved for heterosexual couples success rates are higher in single women and lesbian couples with the use of donor sperm. Schedule a pre-conception appointment with your physician or midwife to discuss your health, lifestyle, and pregnancy plans. Women of any age have their blood pressure monitored regularly during pregnancy, so your physician will strive to make sure your blood pressure is under control.
Dietary changes are important during pregnancy as you'll need increased amount of certain nutrients during pregnancy. If you are overweight or underweight, your doctor will likely want you to get your weight into a healthy range before you conceive. Tobacco, alcohol, and recreational drugs of any kind will be off-limits during pregnancy, so you should avoid using such substances while you're trying to conceive.
Exercise is safe and even encouraged during pregnancy, and there are a variety of pregnancy-safe exercises you should be engaging in before and during your pregnancy. Walking, stationary biking, yoga, swimming, and weight lifting are generally safe for pregnant women.
While many women do deliver healthy babies after 40, miscarriages due to preexisting health conditions and hormonal abnormalities become more common. Be prepared to require fertility treatment and consider the consequences such as the expense of medical bills. Your personal history should include pregnancies, surgeries, diseases, disorders, medications, addictions, diet, nutrition, fitness, and social history. If you or your partner need assistance with substance, alcohol, or tobacco cessation now is the time to get it. This should include sleeping (8 hours every night), eating (fresh, unprocessed foods), exercising (30 minutes 4-6 days a week), and relaxing (every chance you get). Review blood test results taken during pregnancy with the doctor, especially the tests that cover the likelihood of specific birth defects.


Listen to your body, slow down, and get extra sleep (learn to sleep on your side, not back).
If working, and if the doctor advises that yours is a high risk pregnancy, then take off from work earlier than scheduled, as per the doctor's instructions. However, pregnancy after 40 still poses some additional risks and complications to the mother and baby.
However, due to an increased risk of pregnancy-related complications, the likelihood of a C-section increases with age. If you're underweight prior to pregnancy, you'll be expected to gain more weight throughout your pregnancy and if you're overweight you'll be expected to gain less. You should also minimize caffeine intake, as caffeine should only be used in moderation during pregnancy. Make sure you prepare for the emotional impact pregnancy loss will have on you, in the event that it occurs.
Speak to your healthcare provider, she will be able to provide you with many resources to help you achieve your healthy pregnancy goals. Preparing yourself before you become pregnant can help you get your body in condition for a successful pregnancy.
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