New studies show that older women are now ignoring contraceptives out of a misguided perception that after a certain age they will no longer be able to get pregnant.
Although it is true that women slowly watch their fertility wane with age, women can still get pregnant throughout their thirties, forties, and fifties. In fact, the abortion rates for women that fall between the ages of 40-44 are almost the same as those for women who are under 16 years of age according to figures from Wales and England.
The average abortion rate for women of these two groups is about one out of every thousand women. The reasons they opt for abortion are varied and include possible birth abnormalities in a child which is a side effect that is more common in older mothers.
However, the Family Planning Association claims that some of their evidence shows that abortions occur at an older age many times because women think that they are too old to get pregnant and then are shocked when it happens.
In response to the growing problem the FBA has launched a new campaign that is titled ‘Conceivable?’ and is directed towards women using contraception at all times until menopause is over to prevent unwanted pregnancies.
Julie Bentley, the chief executive of the FPA stated that although it is important to be aware of the fact that fertility decreases with age, it is also important to remember that fertility is still possible up until menopause actually ends.