All posts tagged: spontaneous pregnancy

Why So Many Accidental Pregnancies Happen in Your 40s

Why So Many Accidental Pregnancies Happen in Your 40s

After she turned 42, Teesha Karr thought she was done having kids. Six, in her mind, was perfect. And besides, she was pretty sure she had started menopause. For the past six months she’d had all the same signs as her friends: hot flashes, mood swings, tender breasts. She and her husband decided they could probably safely do away with contraception. But less than a month later, Karr felt a familiar twinge of pain in her ovary—the same twinge she’d felt every time she’d been pregnant before. Karr felt embarrassed. “Teenagers accidentally get pregnant. Forty-two-year-old women don’t usually accidentally get pregnant,” she told me. But, really, 42-year-old women accidentally getting pregnant is surprisingly common. Nearly 4 percent of all new babies are born to women 40 and older, according to the latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics. As many as 75 percent of pregnancies in this age range are unplanned. It’s a frequent enough occurrence that the plots of Downton Abbey, Sex Education, And Just Like That, Grey’s Anatomy, and Black-ish have …