Doctors should continue to caution women of advanced maternal age against rapid repeat pregnancies.
New research published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) examined the ideal length of time between pregnancies for a mother and her newborn’s health. The study researchers found that 12 to 18 months is enough time to prevent an increased risk of premature birth and infant or maternal mortality.
In her commentary on the new study, cited by INSIDER, Medscape and Business Insider, Dr. Stephanie Teal stated that this research further demonstrates the importance of women delaying a consecutive pregnancy. She noted that women of advanced maternal age (35 or older) often feel a sense of urgency to have multiple children quickly before their fertility declines. But doctors should recommend women weigh the potential negative effects before trying to get pregnant again after giving birth.
Even if doctors warn against getting pregnant too soon, Dr. Teal conceded that women of advanced maternal age may not be quick to change their habits: “Simply telling older women to delay conception is not likely to improve health outcomes, as women are aware of their ‘biological clocks’ and many will value their desire for another child over their physician’s warnings.”
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