The best time for a person to conceive is when they are physically, emotionally, mentally and financially ready - this varies from person to person. While most people have their peak childbearing years in their 20s, this decade isn't always the best age to have a child when you take into account the variables that matter beyond fertility. Some are not ready, while others are. That's why most experts and parents agree that there is no perfect age to conceive.
The ability to create life is undoubtedly one of the greatest gifts this world has to offer, but it also comes with a very loud clock that keeps ticking. In fact, it's hard to find someone who actually wants kids without consciously wanting themTheir physiology and physical limitations in a race against time.
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"The younger you are, the less money and resources you have for child care, but the earlier you are in your career, [this] supports maternity leave and the absence of young children," said Wendy C. Goodall McDonald, MD. Gynecologist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago. "The older you get, the more money you have, but more money may be needed to pay for pregnancy benefits if needed." Many of those waiting may also be part of the sandwich generation, which means taking care of children and old age at the same time parents.
Helps you decide what age it might be appropriate forvas deferensWe asked a panel of parents and health professionals for informed guidance on getting pregnant. Read on to find out your perfect pregnancy age.
before you turn 20
Obviously, having a baby in your teens isn't an ideal scenario, but there's no denying that it's your baby boom. "You may also be underweight, [which helps] reduce your risk of pregnancy complications, such as gestational diabetes and high blood pressure," says Dr. Goodall McDonald. Unfortunately,Often higher rates of preeclampsiaIn this age group (they grow again in their 30s and 40s). Financial concerns related to raising children can also be stressful.
Phylicia I. from Atlanta was married and pregnant at age 18. Looking back, she says, she had the mindset of a child: "I was very emotional and didn't know how to be a mother at such a young age," she recalled more than a decade later. "It's hard being a parent when you have to grow a lot on your own." Phylicia calls her children a "gift from God," but admits that if she waited a few more years until she had more knowledge than she did as a teenager And patience, everything will be easier.
Age 20 to 24
Most people in their early twenties are very fertile,A woman has about a 25% chance of conceiving each month.However, finances remain a burden, as most people in their early 20s are paying off student loans, have reduced incomes, and have little or no savings.
Bianca D. started college at 20 and is pregnant with her daughter. By the time she was 25, she had a son. The Orlando mom was lucky to have the support of friends and family who helped her through school. But, despite her young age, the transitions in her life made her second pregnancy even more difficult than her first.
Bianca said the first pregnancy was much easier on my body because I was younger and in better shape. "By my second pregnancy, I had transitioned from a full-time job in the marketing industry to a work-from-home entrepreneurial career. I was less active and had a more stressful life." More complications and longer recovery times.
Bianca claimed there was no "right time" to have a baby. "It's not going to be easy, with or without a plan," she affirms.
Your chances of getting pregnant at each stage of your cycle
Ages from 25 to 29
Medically, the chances of getting pregnant in your 20s are the same as in your 20s, and the lifestyle pros and cons are not much different. But at this age you have more wisdom and patience to have children.
Krystal R. of Miami, Florida decided to conceive immediately after getting married at 27, despite others advising her to wait. "What people don't know is that my husband and I have been talking about this for years — it's something we want," she said. "I really love having my daughter when I'm 27. I feel young, confident, energized and ready to be the best mom I can be."
Madelyn M. gave birth to her first child at age 28 and wanted another soon. "I grew up in a Hispanic household, and I felt a lot of pressure to have all my kids by the time I was 30," the Atlanta mom said. "Society puts a lot of pressure on us, but I agree that having kids in your 20s gives you some flexibility and doesn't make you feel like you have to have kids one after another."
Age 30 to 34
"Once you get into your 30s, especially 35 or older, we start to see a decline in fertility, but it's not absolute," says Mary Jane Minkin, MD, clinical professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at Yale University. "If you're still busy building your career, or haven't found the perfect partner, you shouldn't be forced to get pregnant just to have kids. But you also need to think about how many kids you want."
On the plus side, getting pregnant in your early 30s gives you plenty of time to enjoy your youth, explore your career, and learn about yourself. That was the case for Kelly M. of Suffern, New York, who gave birth to her first child at age 34. She agrees that there is reason to wait until you are older. "I was definitely not ready for that kind of commitment in my 20s when I had so many other things I wanted to accomplish first," she said.
Meghan E. of Richmond, Virginia became pregnant at age 32. In retrospect, she says, it gave her plenty of time to develop her career, and she felt emotionally grounded. "There's no question that with even the best pregnancies and the easiest babies, you still have to cut back, even temporarily," she says. "It took me four full years to make a name for myself and build a solid base of loyal clients that allowed me to take a step back when I needed to."
Meghan has acknowledged some of the downsides of being pregnant in her 30s. "I know we're only going to have one or two kids, so I'm not in a rush - but if someone wants more than one couple, or they want separate kids, maybe you should consider starting earlier"
Age 35 to 39
People in their 30s should discuss pregnancy with their gynecologist six months after trying to conceive and see a reproductive endocrinologist. that is becauseFertility rate begins to decline significantly at the age of 32, and accelerates at the age of 37.and their success rateundergoing infertility treatments, such as IVF, said Dr. Goodall McDonald. "Health risks are also starting to rise, such as high blood pressure, gestational diabetes and pre-eclampsia,and the number of chromosomal abnormalities”
How to have a healthy pregnancy after 35
Monica B. of Northport, New York, likes having two kids at ages 35 and 37 because it gives her time to mature and become more financially stable. "Because of my career while having my son, I have the experience and knowledge to start my own consulting business," she says. "I can be my own boss and set my own hours, which wasn't possible a few years ago."
However, there's a downside: "I feel like I've spent years with all the moms around me, and it makes me feel a little disconnected," admits Monica. "I still get invited to my mums' nights, but there's always something in our conversations that emphasizes the age difference."
Age 40 to 45
40 years oldA healthy person has a less than 5% chance of conceiving each month.Medical risk is another concern: People over 40 have an increased chance of early pregnancy complications, such as ectopic pregnancy and miscarriage, says Anate Brauer, MD, director of IVF at Shady Grove Fertility in New York. they also often sufferpreeclampsia, diabetes, placenta previa, low birth weight and premature birth, have a higher fetal mortality rate. The risk increases further if they have pre-existing conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes or obesity. People who undergo fertility treatment are more likely to have multiple pregnancies, which also increases the risk.
Suzana S. of Astoria, N.Y., gave birth to her daughter a month before her 41st birthday — and she says the timing was perfect for her. "I'm so glad I have a daughter because I've spent so many years trying to figure out what my life means and define myself," she insisted. "Because of my life experiences, I know I can help my daughter cut through all the noise in her life and discover what is true and beautiful to her."
With stories like this, the question "When is the best age to conceive?" really doesn't seem to have a good answer. Biologically speaking, the answer may be in your early twenties, but the journey is very personal and different for everyone. The best way is to do what you think is right for you, whatever that is.
Best years to get pregnant, according to moms? ›
Experts say the best time to get pregnant is between your late 20s and early 30s. This age range is associated with the best outcomes for both you and your baby.Is 22 too early to have a baby? ›
Your 20s is certainly a good time, numbers-wise, to have a baby, assuming all the other factors are good. There are some potential risks that are increased for those who are at the lower ends of their 20s.Is 37 too old to have a baby? ›
Geriatric pregnancy is a rarely used term for having a baby when you're 35 or older. Rest assured, most healthy women who get pregnant after age 35 and even into their 40s have healthy babies.Is it smart to have a baby at 20? ›
The optimum age to have a child is when a person is ready- physically, emotionally, mentally and financially. Biologically, 20s might be the best age, but one definitely needs to consider other factors as well before welcoming a baby.Is it risky to have a baby at 20? ›
The risk of pregnancy-related complications is generally low in your 20s, with a notable exception: preeclampsia, or pregnancy-induced hypertension.What is the safest age to have a baby? ›
Experts say the best time to get pregnant is between your late 20s and early 30s. This age range is associated with the best outcomes for both you and your baby. One study pinpointed the ideal age to give birth to a first child as 30.5. Your age is just one factor that should go into your decision to get pregnant.What is risk of Down syndrome by age? ›
Down syndrome occurs in people of all races and economic levels. The risk increases with the mother's age (1 in 1250 for a 25 year old mother to 1 in 1000 at age 31, 1 in 400 at age 35, and about 1 in 100 at age 40). However, 80% of babies with Down syndrome are born to women under age 35 years.Is pregnancy harder in your 30s? ›
Trouble conceiving: Starting in their early 30s, women become less fertile, and it may take them longer to get pregnant. Complications during pregnancy: Women older than age 35 have a higher risk for diabetes and high blood pressure during pregnancy. Older women are also more likely to be pregnant with multiples.What age is high risk pregnancy? ›
If you're 35 years old or older and pregnant, you're considered to be of advanced maternal age, or AMA. This can put your pregnancy in the high-risk category for a number of reasons, including an increased risk of complications for you and your baby.Why do I want a baby all of a sudden? ›
If the sight of a cute, cuddly baby makes you long for you own, then you're not alone. The influx of emotions from being around a baby can spark our instincts to reproduce. This sudden impulsive urge to have a child has been coined by pop culture as “baby fever.”
When should men have kids? ›
The age where a man is most fertile is between 22 and 25 years. It is suggested to have children before the age of 35. After this age, the male fertility begins to worsen. After 35, the sperm might result in pregnancies where mutations can occur.How do I conceive twins? ›
Some fertility drugs work by stimulating a woman's ovaries, which can sometimes cause them to release more than one egg. If sperm fertilizes both of these eggs, this can result in twins. In vitro fertilization (IVF) can also increase the chance of conceiving twins.
While most people are in their reproductive prime in their 20s, that decade isn't always the best age to have kids when you consider those important variables beyond fertility. Some people simply aren't ready yet, while others are. That's why most experts and parents agree that there is no perfect age to get pregnant.How many attempts does it take to get pregnant? ›
Most healthy couples conceive within one year of unprotected sex; however, the following factors may reduce the odds of conceiving: Age: Age and fertility are indirectly proportional; as the woman's age advances, childbearing potential decreases.What is the best age gap between siblings? ›
A gap of 3 years or more greatly reduces the chances of sibling rivalry. By this time the older child is secure in him or herself and quite independent. In addition, the mother's body is fully recovered from the challenges of pregnancy and birth of the first child.How many kids should one have? ›
Despite the growing trends mentioned above, two children still seems to the ideal number. An actual study revealed one to two children is the ideal number for “happiness”, but with two you don't have to deal with the aforementioned only child issues.What is the average age to have a baby? ›
The report also showed that the average (or mean) age of mothers for all births rose from 24.6 years to 27.2 over the past three decades. Over one-half of all births still occur to women in their twenties–the peak childbearing years–but the average age in this group has shifted steadily upward since 1970.What gender is Down syndrome most common in? ›
Although women older than 35 years of age make up a small portion of all births6 in the United States each year, about nearly one-half of babies with Down syndrome are born to women in this age group.Does folic acid prevent Down syndrome? ›
Current supplementation policies designed to prevent neural tube defects may incidentally prevent Down's syndrome, provided a sufficiently high dose of folic acid is used.Does father's age affect Down syndrome? ›
As men age, their risk of fathering a child with Down syndrome may increase—the older the man, the more likely that the process of spermatogenesis, or sperm production will go awry, leading to sperm that contain errors like an extra chromosome.
How fertile are you at 30? ›
Fertility in the Aging Female
Each month that she tries, a healthy, fertile 30-year-old woman has a 20% chance of getting pregnant. That means that for every 100 fertile 30-year-old women trying to get pregnant in 1 cycle, 20 will be successful and the other 80 will have to try again.
As you get closer to 40, it's biologically more difficult to get pregnant and you may have a higher risk of miscarriage, chromosomal issues, and other pregnancy complications. But most women in their 30s will get pregnant with little trouble.Is 34 too late to have a baby? ›
If you are thinking about having a baby in your late thirties or early forties, you are not alone. Women ages 35-45 are increasingly becoming first-time moms. And most healthy women in this age group have healthy pregnancies, births and babies.Is it good to get pregnant at 22? ›
Pregnancy is often physically easier for women in their 20s because there's a lower risk of health complications like high blood pressure and diabetes. You're also less likely to have gynecological problems, like uterine fibroids, which often become more problematic over time.Is it safe to get pregnant at 22? ›
Your Chances of Getting Pregnant: Early 20s (20 to 24)
"[When a person is] 21, 90% of [their] eggs are chromosomally normal, which helps your chances of conceiving a healthy baby," says Dr. Copperman. You also have age on your side. For people with ovaries, fertility peaks at the age of 24 on average.
Most couples will get pregnant within a year if they have regular sex and don't use contraception. But women become less fertile as they get older.Can a baby survive being born at 22? ›
The more premature the baby is, the lower the chances of survival are. Very few infants survive when they are born at 22 to 23 weeks of pregnancy.What is the healthiest age to get pregnant? ›
Experts say the best time to get pregnant is between your late 20s and early 30s. This age range is associated with the best outcomes for both you and your baby. One study pinpointed the ideal age to give birth to a first child as 30.5. Your age is just one factor that should go into your decision to get pregnant.What is the safest age to get pregnant? ›
Women are most fertile and have the best chance of getting pregnant in their 20s. This is the time when you have the highest number of good quality eggs available and your pregnancy risks are lowest. At age 25, your odds of conceiving after 3 months of trying are just under 20 percent .What age are men most fertile? ›
Peak male fertility is around 25-29 years old. Sperm quality begins to decline at 30. At 45, men begin to experience a significant decrease in semen volume. Older men can also take longer to conceive a child.
Why am I 22 and can't get pregnant? ›
However, there are many possible reasons why you aren't conceiving, including ovulation irregularities, structural problems in the reproductive system, low sperm count, underlying medical problems, or simply not trying enough.What are the chances of being infertile at 22? ›
7 per cent of women in the U.S. between the ages of 20 and 24 are infertile. 9 per cent are infertile between the ages of 25 and 29. 15 per cent are infertile between the ages of 30 and 34.Can you ovulate on 22? ›
Women with regular cycles can ovulate on days 17-19 if they have a short luteal phase. In this case, ovulation is delayed if it occurs on day 21 or later. For women with longer cycles of 35 days or more, it's not unusual to ovulate on day 21 or later or not at all on some cycles.How do I know if I am fertile enough to get pregnant? ›
If your menstrual cycle lasts 28 days and your period arrives like clockwork, it's likely that you'll ovulate on day 14. That's halfway through your cycle. Your fertile window begins on day 10. You're more likely to get pregnant if you have sex at least every other day between days 10 and 14 of a 28-day cycle.Does giving birth at 20 weeks hurt? ›
You're in just as much pain as what you are when you're delivering - you know - a full term baby. Most of the mothers we spoke to, though not all, had pain relief through labour. As the baby had already died or wasn't expected to survive, mothers were often offered morphine to relieve their labour pains.What is the earliest a baby can be born? ›
Late preterm: Your baby is born between 34 and 36 completed weeks of pregnancy. Moderately preterm: Your baby is born between 32 and 34 weeks of pregnancy. Very preterm: Your baby is born at less than 32 weeks of pregnancy. Extremely preterm: Your baby is born at or before 25 weeks of pregnancy.What is the youngest term baby to survive? ›
Guinness World Records officially named Curtis Means, born at 21 weeks and one day at UAB Hospital, the most premature infant to survive.