• Reducing Your Risk of Chromosomal Abnormalities

    The risk of passing a chromosomal abnormality on to your baby increases with the mother’s age. Although, research has shown that most women in their late 30s and 40s can have a healthy pregnancy and a normal, healthy baby.
    If you are over 35 and trying to conceive, consider the following guidelines to increase your chances of a successful, healthy pregnancy and baby:
    • See a doctor around three months before you try to conceive to review your medical conditions, family medical history, medications, and immunizations.
    • Take a prenatal vitamin containing 400 micrograms of folic acid daily about three months before you become pregnant and through the first month of pregnancy to help prevent neural tube defects.
    • Get early and regular prenatal care.
    • Eat a variety of nutritious foods, including foods containing folic acid, like fortified breakfast cereals, enriched grain products, leafy green vegetables, oranges and orange juice, and peanuts.
    • Begin pregnancy at a healthy weight.
    • Do not smoke or drink alcohol.
    • Don't use any drug, even over-the-counter medications or herbal preparations, unless recommended by a doctor who knows you are pregnant.


    Chromosome abnormalities. National Human Genome Research Institute website. Available at: http://www.genome.gov/11508982 . Updated October 13, 2011. Accessed July 24, 2013.

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