A mommy after 35

Most healthy women from age 35 into their 40s have healthy pregnancies. Most women over 35 are in good health. Good prenatal care and healthy habits can help you reduce certain risks. If problems do arise for women over 35, they can usually be successfully treated.

Are women over age 35 more likely to have health problems during pregnancy?

Women over age 35 have an increased risk of:

What can you do to have a healthy pregnancy?

No matter what your age, see your health care provider before trying to get pregnant if you:

  • Have a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes, a seizure disorder or high blood pressure
  • Are on long-term medication. If not under control, some medical conditions can cause risks for you and your baby.
  • If you are older than 35 and don't get pregnant after trying for six months, see your health care provider. Older women may find it harder to get pregnant than younger women because fertility declines with age. In many cases, infertility can be treated.

Prenatal care is especially important for women over 35 because:

To help reduce risks during pregnancy:

  • Eat healthy foods.
  • Gain a healthy amount of weight.
  • Exercise, with your health care provider's guidance.
  • Don't drink alcohol, smoke or take illegal drugs.
  • Don't take any medications or herbal supplements without first checking with your health care provider.

Do women over age 35 need special prenatal screening tests?

Ask your provider about prenatal screening tests for the baby. For instance, maternal blood screening may be recommended for pregnant women 35 or older.

Test results are usually available within a week or two. Most women who have prenatal screening tests learn that the baby is healthy and feel reassured by the results.

More information

Last reviewed: December, 2013 

Most healthy women from age 35 into their 40s have healthy pregnancies. Most women over 35 are in good health. Good prenatal care and healthy habits can help you reduce certain risks. If problems do arise for women over 35, they can usually be successfully treated.

Are women over age 35 more likely to have health problems during pregnancy?

Women over age 35 have an increased risk of:

What can you do to have a healthy pregnancy?

No matter what your age, see your health care provider before trying to get pregnant if you:

  • Have a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes, a seizure disorder or high blood pressure
  • Are on long-term medication. If not under control, some medical conditions can cause risks for you and your baby.
  • If you are older than 35 and don't get pregnant after trying for six months, see your health care provider. Older women may find it harder to get pregnant than younger women because fertility declines with age. In many cases, infertility can be treated.

Prenatal care is especially important for women over 35 because:

To help reduce risks during pregnancy:

  • Eat healthy foods.
  • Gain a healthy amount of weight.
  • Exercise, with your health care provider's guidance.
  • Don't drink alcohol, smoke or take illegal drugs.
  • Don't take any medications or herbal supplements without first checking with your health care provider.

Do women over age 35 need special prenatal screening tests?

Ask your provider about prenatal screening tests for the baby. For instance, maternal blood screening may be recommended for pregnant women 35 or older.

Test results are usually available within a week or two. Most women who have prenatal screening tests learn that the baby is healthy and feel reassured by the results.

More information

Last reviewed: December, 2013