It is generally accepted that for girls aged 13–16, childbirth poses an increased danger (both for themselves and for the unborn child). However, everything is not so clear. And such young mothers can have healthy offspring. And here a lot depends on the parents of these girls.
Scientists have established a curious pattern: if during early pregnancy the parents of the expectant mother were calm about this fact and the girl carried the fetus, feeling the support and understanding of her parents, the birth proceeded normally, and the child was born healthy. But if adults mistreated their daughter, reproached “for what they had done”, then, as a rule, there were a lot of complications for both the woman in labor and the child.
However, for the health of too young mothers, there are dangers of a different kind. According to scientists from the Karolinska Institute (Sweden), who have been monitoring the health status of a large number of women who have given birth to their first child under 20 for many years, all of them can be attributed to the risk group. It has been established that they are twice as likely to develop lung cancer and uterine cancer, three times as likely to develop various cardiovascular diseases.
And older mothers have their own dangers. More than a century of experience in studying breast cancer has allowed scientists to draw unambiguous conclusions: the later a woman has her first child, the higher the risk of breast cancer. The probability of getting sick, for example, increases by 3 times if the first birth occurred at 30, and not at 18. Therefore, in countries where women give birth early (Central Asia and the Middle East, China, Japan), the incidence of breast cancer is low. One explanation for this is that the fetus produces a protein called alpha-fetoprotein. Part of it "leaks" into the mother's blood, protecting her from malignant diseases.
According to medical statistics, breast cancer is most common in the UK, where it is “fashionable to have children” just after thirty years.
Older mothers endanger not only themselves, but also their future children. So. researchers at the University of Bristol (Great Britain) note that children of elderly mothers have an increased chance of developing insulin-dependent diabetes. Professor Edwin Gale and his staff stated that the probability of this disease increases by 25% with each new five-year period a woman lives between reaching physiological maturation and the first birth. The pattern found means that the first child of a XNUMX-year-old mother is three times more likely to develop type A diabetes than the first child of a XNUMX-year-old mother. A similar trend continues with the birth of the following children, although in this case, the age of the mother no longer has such a strong effect on the likelihood of developing diabetes in the offspring.
And what about the age of men? Men who conceived a child between the ages of 45 and 49 were twice as likely to father children with schizophrenia than those who had a child before age 25. After the age of 50, the risk of becoming the father of a schizophrenic increases three times. The age of the father in 26,6% of cases was the cause of schizophrenia. At the same time, the age of the mother does not play a significant role in this case.
The results of another study, reported in the Journal of Urology, show that "aged" mothers are more likely to have boys with birth defects of the penis (the opening of the urethra is not located at the end of the penis, but on the side). This defect is eliminated with the help of surgical intervention. Scientists still cannot explain why older mothers are more likely to give birth to children with such deviations. One of the assumptions is that the reason for this phenomenon is a longer period of exposure to harmful substances from a polluted environment on the mother's body. There are many other research data of scientists proving the undesirability of both too early first births and too late ones.
The optimal age for the birth of the first child is 21-22 years.
And what is the interval to choose between the birth of the first and second child? There are different opinions on this matter. It is believed that a woman's body fully restores its functions only after three years: due to postpartum stress and exhaustion of the mother's body, the onset of a new pregnancy soon after childbirth increases the risk of having a physiologically immature child. It would seem that pregnancy should be planned for this time – after three years. However, not all experts agree with this point of view. Some psychologists give advice to “have” a second child when the first one is 6, 7, or even 10 years old.
Unlike psychologists, British physiologists believe that a gap of several years between births is too big. According to them, the optimal interval required for the birth of a child with a normal weight is, on average, 18-23 months. Why this period is the most successful is not completely clear to the scientists themselves. They suggest that a previous pregnancy creates a kind of "physiological adaptation" to carrying a fetus, possibly by increasing blood flow to the uterus. Over time, this effect disappears, and the woman has more problems with bearing and giving birth to a child.
Solidarity with their colleagues and American scientists who have studied 173 births in Utah. According to the data obtained, in mothers who became pregnant within six months after the previous birth, the probability of having premature or hypotrophic newborns is 205–30% more than in women who “withstood” the optimal period (40–18 months). Women who give birth to the next child in more than 23 years also significantly increase the risk of giving birth to malnourished and premature babies.
Note that most often the second child in the family appears not after 18–23 months, but after 3–4 years or more.
Closer to the second birth, try to give your first child more warmth and tenderness, because soon the newly born child will be in the spotlight. Try to prepare him for the birth of a new family member.
- Don't talk too soon about your future baby. The most successful moment for this is when the stomach has already begun to noticeably round. However, the first-born can ask you about it himself: after all, from the moment a woman finds out about pregnancy, her behavior changes. Children, with their natural sensitivity, see that there have been some changes in the behavior of the mother, in relation to the father towards the mother, etc. If you see that the child is worried about something, ask him about it, it is quite possible that he intuitively feels that you are expecting a baby.
- Prepare for the fact that your message that you will have a child will raise a number of questions on the topic "Where do babies come from?"
If we talk about the number of children in the family, it is quite obvious that not all married couples can afford to have as many children as they would like.
To the question “What do you think can now most contribute to an increase in the number of children in families like yours?” the following responses were received (as a percentage of the total number of respondents):
- confidence in the future – 38%;
- the opportunity to earn as much as necessary to support the family – 36%;
- improvement of the economic situation in the country – 30%;
- significant improvement in living conditions – 27%;
- introduction of monthly allowances for children under 16 – 14%;
- the introduction of significant salary increments for children – 12%;
- strengthening the moral support of families with minor children – 4%;
- other – 1%;
- none of the above will affect – 15%;
- find it difficult to answer – 17%.
As you can see, most of the reasons are material in nature. And it is quite understandable – life "in times of change" does not predispose to confidence in the future. But, on the other hand, under any social system, under any government, under any economic system, you can only rely on yourself and your own strength. If we understand this, then many problems will cease to exist and, perhaps, then we will not have to justify our unwillingness to have many children by the lack of sufficient funds for their maintenance.
For the children themselves, of course, it is better when there are many of them in the family. It is no secret that this has a positive effect on their intellectual, emotional and physical development.
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