Maria Jose Campanario has revolutionized the social chronicle because she has become pregnant at 42 years of her third child. But is it rare to have a child over forty? According to statistics, no.
La Razón has spoken with several experts on “late” pregnancies and other specialists, from psychiatrists to doctors specialized in pain treatment, to give us their opinion on the risks involved in the pregnancy of the Jesulín de Ubrique woman.
María José Campanario is neither the first nor the last woman to become pregnant in her 40s. The problem, logically, is that she also has fibromyalgia.
Maria Jose Campanario has done enough to publicize this ailment that is not always well understood by society:
“It is a chronic condition – explains the physiotherapist Cristian Guisbert, – which occurs with pain throughout the body, generalized fatigue and pressure pain in specific points (painful points) normally 11 or more, explains the physiotherapist. These patients may be more sensitive to pain than those without it. This is known as allodynia.”
Maria José must be assisted during pregnancy by a physiotherapist
The role of the physiotherapist in the disease is essential. On the one hand, through exercise and specialized treatment to improve the symptoms of the disease and directly the quality of life of the patient.
On the other hand, through therapeutic advice and healthy habits that the professional can teach the patient to better cope with pain and its limitations. In the expert’s opinion, a pregnant woman in the gestation process should know the disease very well and take care of her health in detail by putting herself in the hands of a professional.
Together they will make changes in their lifestyle, among which they have been shown to help in pregnancy: therapeutic exercise, physical therapy and feeding, adequate sleep and knowing more about the disease.
Fibromyalgia and pregnancy
For the gynecologist and obstetrician Miriam al Adib Mendiri, “in pregnancy they can improve or worsen the symptoms of fibromyalgia. It depends on each specific case. Among other factors that can positively or negatively influence evolution are habits and the environment, which is why the ideal would be for healthy habits to be established before pregnancy.”
If the pregnancy occurs under stressful conditions for the mother, or if you have bad eating habits, do not rest well, are sedentary, etc. this could increase oxidative stress and inflammation thus worsening symptoms.
On the other hand, if it is the case of having a calm environment and with healthy lifestyle habits, pregnancy could add certain advantages Since at this stage there are neurohormonal and immunological conditions that can be very positive.
If, in addition, the delivery is physiological (without trauma, calm, not excessively medicalized) and the neurobiological process is respected: mother and baby are kept together (skin to skin), breastfeeding is established, all this triggers the formation of neurotransmitters and hormones that have anxiolytic, antidepressant and immunomodulatory effects protecting from postpartum depression and providing great benefits at the immune level.
Maternal age and pregnancy
For the gynecologist Paloma Garbayo Sesma, “being over 40 years of age can be a risk factor for some disorders and pathologies during pregnancy. This does not mean that age is a determining factor and that something bad always has to happen. Although, indeed, statistically the probabilities of greater risk would be in older women”.
Apart from the fact that there is more difficulty for spontaneous pregnancy and an increase in the rate of miscarriages, also pregnancy at these ages could increase the risk of chromosomal diseases in the baby (such as Down syndrome), preterm birth, intrauterine growth retardation, or low weight.
Also in the mother increases the risk of gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia or excessive weight gain. For all of these are pregnancies that are more closely watched and controlled.
Late pregnancy and mental health
The psychiatrist Pedro Matos considers the “pros and cons” of being a mother at an advanced age and, even more so, having grown children.
Listing advantage potential of a late motherhood we could comment on the following: it can be satisfactory since it is usually a moment in a person’s life where one has reached a certain emotional maturity, personal security and has greater stability at a personal, work and socioeconomic level.
Although raising a child has its difficulties, being a normally conscious decision makes one face the situation with greater integrity and motivation. It is essential that women take care of themselves both physically and psychologically, seeking the necessary and timely specialized help.
We can ask ourselves is there a psychological risk in a pregnancy in older ages? The answer would be yes depending on other factors. Maternal age carries potential risks during pregnancy and delivery for both mother and baby.
Risk of developing mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, psychosis, phobias, among others, present during these moments, regardless of maternal age.
Other possible disadvantages could be the lower average life expectancy, which could compromise parenting; lower levels of activity and energy and difficulties in tolerance to frustration; social stigma happened; not counting the hard psychological and physical level that is usually the search for pregnancy, fertility problems.
Emphasizing some recommendations to address the emotional aspects related to and derived from pregnancy it is advisable to learn relaxation techniques, mindfulness or mindfulness, yoga, pilates to help manage stress; have a healthy social group of friends or other women with whom to share this moment; adequate nutrition, sleep hygiene; close observation and close follow-up as it may be a high-risk pregnancy.