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Advanced maternal age, in a broad sense, is the instance of a woman being of an older age at a stage of reproduction, although there are various definitions of specific age and stage of reproduction. It is a result of female childbearing postponement. The variability in definitions regarding age is in part explained by the effects of increasing age occurring as a continuum rather than as a threshold effect.

Advanced maternal age, in a broad sense, is the instance of a woman being of an older age at a stage of reproduction, although there are various definitions of specific age and stage of reproduction. It is a result of female childbearing postponement. The variability in definitions regarding age is in part explained by the effects of increasing age occurring as a continuum rather than as a threshold effect.

In Western, Northern, and Southern Europe, first-time mothers are on average 26 to 29 years old, up from 23 to 25 years at the start of the 1970s. In a number of European countries (Spain), the mean age of women at first childbirth has now even crossed the 30 year threshold.

This process is not restricted to Europe. Asia, Japan and the United States are all seeing average age at first birth on the rise, and increasingly the process is spreading to countries in the developing world like China, Turkey and Iran. In the U.S., the average age of first childbirth was 26 in 2013.

Advanced maternal age is associated with adverse reproductive effects such as increased risk of infertility, and that the children will have chromosomal abnormalities. The corresponding paternal age effect is less pronounced.

In present generations it is more common to have children at an older age. Several factors may influence the decisions of mothers when having their first baby. Such factors include educational, social and economic status.

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