Like many aspects of your health, fertility changes over time. The ability to become pregnant and to have a healthy child is affected by a number of factors including your hormone levels and lifestyle. While you should discuss any particular questions or concerns you may have with a doctor at a women’s health clinic, the following guide explores how age and fertility are related in general terms.
Fertility begins with puberty in the teens when most girls will experience their first menstrual cycles and a number of accompanying changes in hormones and physical features. As women go through their twenties, they reach their most fertile age, when it is easiest for the body to carry a healthy pregnancy to term. After this, the number of eggs released from the ovaries naturally declines, making it more difficult to become pregnant. The quality of each egg is also lower, with a higher likelihood of chromosome duplications or conditions like Down syndrome in the fetus.
In today’s society, it is common to wait until one is financially established before trying to have children. For some women, this can mean more difficulty getting pregnant and greater risks for the child. While fertility treatments from your women’s health clinic can help, some of the physical changes that accompany an age-related decline in fertility cannot be treated. Most women’s ability to have a baby sharply decreases after age 35, and they become completely unable to carry a pregnancy five to ten years before menopause.
If you’re concerned that age may interfere with your ability to have children, there are several options. You may wish to preserve some of your eggs now so you can have a child later on. Many assisted reproductive treatments, including in vitro fertilization, can increase your chances. You may also consider using an egg donor. Talk to a specialized care provider at a women’s health clinic to learn more about which options are best for your case.
If you need to find a women’s health clinic in Stayton, OR, choose Santiam Hospital. Serving the Mid-Willamette Valley area since 1953, their certified and dedicated staff provide a full range of preventive care and emergency services to keep you healthy, comfortable, and thriving. To schedule an appointment, call (503) 769-2175 or find a doctor on their website.