First-time mothers in 'risk zone' even before 35, says Swedish study

A study from Swedish researches say women who delay having children enter a ‘risk zone' of problems in their early 30s, more than previously thought.

The risk of of prematurity and stillbirth rises by as much as 20 percent for women ages 30 to 34, compared with those having babies in their late 20s, according to the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm and the University of Bergen.

First-time mothers have previously been told they are at high risk above the age of 35, but more and more women are putting off having children until their 30s.

"We were surprised that the risk for certain outcomes increased at such a relatively early age. For women individually, the risk is small, but for society at large there will be a significant number of 'unnecessary' complications with so many women having children just after 30. It would therefore be advisable to inform both women and men, even at schools, of how important age is to child birth," said Ulla Waldenström, professor at the Department of Women's and Children's Health at Karolinska Institutet.

The researchers say their study is based on the results of Swedish and Norwegian medical birth registers.

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