The odds of getting pregnant decline with age. The odds of getting pregnant are the greatest for a woman in her early twenties and then slowly decline with the passing years. Here are some numbers related to the chances of getting pregnant and age:
- For ages early to mid-thirties – a woman in general will be about 15-20% less fertile.
- For ages mid to late thirties – fertility will generally decline by up to 50%.
- For women ages early to mid-forties – fertility declines by over 90%.
Why do the odds of getting pregnant generally decline as the woman gets older? Studies have indicated the reasons for fertility decline are related to the quality of the woman’s eggs as well as the quantity. A woman in her lifetime will typically produce about 400 fully developed eggs (usually one per month) that are capable of becoming implanted in the uterus and causing pregnancy. As these eggs get used up over thirty years or so and estrogen production slows so that the uterine and vaginal linings are no longer properly stimulated, pregnancy becomes less and less likely.
And what about the male’s role, age and the odds of getting pregnant? Studies have found that the probability of causing pregnancy for a man in his late thirties declines by about 40% from the probability during his twenties to mid-thirties.
How does a woman increase the odds of getting pregnant? Here are some tips:
• Know your fertile time – ovulation generally happens about 14 days before your next period begins. For women with cycles of 28 days, that could make day #14 your most fertile for getting pregnant (day #1 being the first day that your last period began).
• Monitor your basal body temperature – the slight elevations in your body temperature upon awakening each day will signal your most fertile time.
• Monitor your cervical mucus – ovulation will cause a change in the appearance and consistency of cervical mucus. Check yourself each day and you’ll be able to see the ‘egg-white-like’ vaginal discharge that indicates ovulation and your most fertile time.
• Adopt a healthy lifestyle – the odds of getting pregnant increase the more healthy you are. Healthy living includes a sensible diet, nutritional supplements, adequate quality sleep, managing stress, some exercise and weight management.
Planning to start a family, getting pregnant and pregnancy can be exciting, frustrating, fulfilling and without any certain outcome. Improving your health will add to the likelihood that you can become pregnant and have a healthy baby.