New Statistics on Motherhood at Older Age

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Healthy pregnancy, new motherghood, mom's health

Photo courtesy of Lenka U.

  • New statistics on motherhood at older age: According to results from a new study recently published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, the risk of giving birth to a child with an autism spectrum disorder is much higher for women after age 30 and the same goes for older men fathering a child. At the same time, there are new studies showing positive results for older moms. New research from the Birkbeck University published in the European Journal of Developmental Psychology, indicates that older mothers (3o or over) are more likely to parent responsibly and, compared to teenage mothers, are less likely to use harsh punishments like smacking their children. Their other studies also show that older mothers seem to provide safer environments for their children-results show that children are 22 percent less likely to accidentally injure themselves and almost a third less likely to be admitted to hospital by age three due to non-underlying health problems. The study also indicates that older mothers may be better suited to deal with parent-child conflict. In addition to these positive findings, new preliminary research suggests that while chromosomal defects do rise with maternal age, congenital defects don’t follow that same trend.
  • New moms are dangerously exhausted for months: According to a new study from the Queensland University of Technology’s Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety recently published in journal PLOSone, recovery period for new mothers is longer than the previously estimated four months. New data shows than even months after an infant is on a more regular sleep routine, many new moms are still sleep-deprived. As the head researcher Dr. Ashleigh Filtness explained: “Sleep disruption strongly influences daytime function, with sleepiness recognized as a risk-factor for people performing critical and dangerous tasks.Policy makers developing regulations for parental leave entitlements should take into consideration the high prevalence of excessive daytime sleepiness experienced by new mothers, ensuring enough opportunity for daytime sleepiness to diminish to a manageable level prior to re-engagement in the workforce.” The Australian researchers plan to develop a program to raise awareness among pregnant women about the dangers of sleeplessness for freshly-minted parents.
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