It has been claimed that if an older woman has a relatively complication-free pregnancy, there is every chance that her child will be as healthy as that of a younger woman.
Denise Linay, midwife advisor at the Royal College of Midwives, said: "If [an older woman] gets through the pregnancy and you don't go into premature birth or have any complications, when you have the baby the baby is usually as healthy as if you were in your teens."
However, she noted that the ideal time for a woman's body to give birth is in her late teens to early 20s; but this is unlikely to the right time in terms of finances or a woman's mental age.
Earlier this month the Office for National Statistics revealed that the number of women conceiving between the ages of 35 and 39 has exceeded that of women aged between 15 and 19 for the first time.
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Private maternity news : 1 March 2011