Washington : Nearly 20 per cent of women aged 35 to 44 take longer than a year to get pregnant, worrying new figures suggest.
Research among more than 15,000 people in the UK found 17.7 per cent of women aged 35 to 44 had tried to conceive for a year or more, compared to 12.5 per cent of women of all ages.
Some 17.6 per cent of women who started living with a partner or husband aged 30 or over reported a problem conceiving, compared to 13.8 per cent of those aged 20 to 29.
Of those who had children, more than a third of those who became mothers aged 35 or older had experienced a period of infertility compared to fewer than one in 10 women who had their first child before the age of 25.
The research also found women with better jobs and who had university degrees were more likely to struggle to conceive.
Among men, 14.9 per cent of those aged 35 to 44 and 14.5 per cent of those aged 45 to 54 had struggled with infertility, compared to 10.1 per cent of men of all ages.
Team leader Jessica Datta of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said that the research has implications for women pursuing careers in an uncertain labour market.
“Rather than warning them of the risks to fertility of delaying parenthood, we advocate social policy that better supports working parents to manage the responsibilities of employment and bringing up children,” she added.
The authors concluded that the study provides estimates of infertility and help-seeking in Britain and the results indicate that the prevalence of infertility is higher among those delaying parenthood.
The study is published in the journal Human Reproduction. (ANI)