Dr Oz: Having Babies After 40
Miraculous achievements have been made in science that allows women to conceive far beyond their latter years. On today’s Dr Oz Show, he asked, when are you too old to have a baby? For years, women have been told to take their time and build their careers, but was this good advice? Can women really have it all?
Studies show that 1 in 5 women postpone pregnancy until after the age 35, and this number is increasing.
Some medical professionals (and women in general) argue that basic biology may prohibit you from successfully conceiving as we get older. Studies also indicated that there are increased health risks to the mother and child when you get pregnant at an older age. Does this mean you really can’t have it all?
Dr Oz: Fertility Drugs vs. Natural Conception
Dr. Jennifer Lahl joined Dr Oz to warn women about delaying pregnancy, stating it’s a reality that “it’s more difficult for women to become pregnant as we age.” Maternal age has an impact on a growing unborn baby. She argued that if a woman is over 40, she’s probably not having her own child and is using eggs from another (younger) woman. Dr. Lahl also argued that there was a risk in using fertility drugs because many of those drugs are new. Doctors were learning as they go. More evidence is showing that there is an increased risk of cancer and a risk to the unborn child when we take fertility drugs. Dr. Lahl suggested having your children earlier. She’s 53 and felt that an apology was owed to women for telling them it’s okay to have a baby later in life.
Dr. John Jain agreed that the opportunity to have a baby declines as you got older, however, thanks to modern medicine, the opportunity to have a child is still an option for the older woman. In fact, while most of his patients are in their early forties, the oldest women he treated with an egg donation was 56. The women he has treated using their own eggs was over 40.
Dr Oz: Fertility Survey Results
The Dr Oz Show took a survey to find out how women felt about having children later in life and here are the results:
How old is too old to have a baby?
13% said 35 was too old
28% said 40
34% said 45
21% said 50
4% said never was too old
Nicole, an audience member, is 40-years-old and stated that she felt good and doesn’t feel like she’s 40. She felt as though she would not have any issues conceiving.
Arabella, another audience member, is 39 and currently pregnant. She spoke directly to Nicole and told her that it has been a long, tumultuous journey to get pregnant. She spent over $90,000 in treatment before getting pregnant. Arabella stated that even though you may not look and feel 40, your eggs are. (Good point!) Getting pregnant may be harder than you think. It was definitely an uphill battle for her, taking her 2 years with 3 IUI cycles, 3 IVFs and 1 pregnancy loss. The sad thing is, her experience is not unusual.
Dr. Evelyn Minaya stated that the truth was that women had that proverbial biological clock ticking. Face facts; as we get older, the chances of becoming pregnant goes way down.
Dr Oz: Pregnancy Chances
In your 20s- 50% chance
In your 30s- 20% chance
In your 40s- 5% chance
Dr. Minaya stated that you are 3 times more likely to have a miscarriage at age 40 than at 30. Women are 6 times more likely to have children with genetic issues when they become pregnant in their 40s, which is why women tend to go the expensive fertility route.
An audience member stood up and told Dr Oz that she just had this conversation with her college students. The social reality of this issue is that many women complained that they wanted to find Mr. Right before getting pregnant. (Good luck with that!) She felt the entire issue of fertility revolved around this social reality, and we can’t ignore that.
Dr Oz ended the segment by asking the question “Are we giving women false promises?” He held this show today because he wanted to give several options that could be processed in many ways, depending on the person. Some women may see the options as a waste of money, while others will consider it a viable resource.
What do you think? Have you or would you ever consider having fertility treatments in order to conceive? Leave a message and let me know.