What do Millennial women think about infertility?

What do Millennial women think about infertility?

Millennial generation were borne between 1982 and 2000. They have commonalities not shared by other generations. Generation Y is the highest-educated generation in American history.

On the Incidence of infertility in the US

The 2006–2010 National Survey of Family Growth (NSFG), indicates that the incidence of infertility among married women aged 15–44 is 6.0% (1.5 million) in 2006–2010, down from 8.5% in 1982 (2.4 Million women).
Impaired Fecundity (ability to have a live birth) among married women aged 15–44 Increased from 11% In 1982 To 15% In 2002, But decreased to 12% In 2006–2010. Both Infertility and impaired fecundity remain closely associated with age. The decline is probably reflects greater delay in childbearing (less women attempt to conceive thus less fit the definition of infertility).

Infertility prevalence can be estimated using two approaches: [1] a constructed measure derived from questions on sexual activity, contraception, relationship status, and pregnancy, and [2] a measure based on estimated time to pregnancy derived from the respondents’ current duration of pregnancy attempt (i.e., current duration approach). Prevalence was approximately twofold higher using the current duration approach (15.5%) vs. the constructed measure (7.0%). Both methods identified similar patterns of effect of increasing age (American Society for Reproductive Medicine 2013).

On Delaying Marriage in Generation Y

According to Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census data, 51% of US adults are currently married. Only 22% of Millennial women are married. The median age of first marriage for Gen Y women is 26.5 years and for men 28.7. Currently, there are more unmarried women in their early 30s than at any time in the last 60 years in the US.

What do Millennial women think about infertility? Generation Y : late marriage and late first birth

Millennial Women : late marriage and late first birth

Millenials give birth to their first child  many years later than predecessors. The mean age at first child’s birth for women was 23 and the mean age at first child’s birth for men was 25 and even much later in more recent research (The Guttmacher Institute). One-half of first births to women were in their 20s and two-thirds of first births were fathered by men who were in their 20s. On average, women aged 15-44 have 1.3 children as of the time of the interview.

Delay in bearing a child remains true even after cohabitation and other adult living arrangements are considered. The gap between first sex and first birth is 9+ years for Gen Y and 3+ years for Gen X.


Millennial Women Overestimate their Fertility Potential

Many Generation Y women, age 25 to 35, think a 30 year old woman has a 70-per cent chance of conceiving per month and in a 40 year old is close to 60% (Fertility IQ 2011 Survey, 1,000 women). Women were wrong most often about how long it takes to get pregnant and about how much fertility declines at various ages.
It is not clear why do millennials overestimate their fertility potenials possible explanations could be [1] Ignoring the disconnect between general health and ovarian aging; women can be very healthy and have very few eggs remaining in the ovary.
[2] Media celebrated older high profile and celebrity births in mid 40s.
[3] Some success of fertility treatment in older mothers.

Generation Y women are anxious about their fertility

Perceived infertility is the individual’s belief that she or he is unable to conceive or impregnate, regardless of whether this belief is medically accurate. Overall, 19% of women believed that they were very likely to be infertile, according to a Gutmacher institute 2012 survey of 1,800 unmarried men and women aged 18–29. A survey from Europe indicates that 31% of women and 52% of men believe that dramatic decline of fertility occurs after age 44.

 On The Utilization of Fertility Services by Millennial Women

Millennial women appear to utilize Fertility Service different than generation X. Twelve percent of women aged 15-44 in 2006-2010 (7.3 million women), or their husbands or partners, had ever used infertility services. Among women aged 25-44, 17% (6.9 million) had ever used any infertility service, a significant decrease from 20% in 1995. Thirty-eight percent of nulliparous women with current fertility problems in 2006-2010 had ever used infertility services, significantly less than 56% of such women in 1982. In all survey years, ever-use of medical help to get pregnant was highest among older and nulliparous women (NSFG). Gen Y also overestimate the success rate of IVF.

Consideration of fertility by generation Y without changing reproductive plans include

  1. No harm in evaluation of ovarian reserve. Some women, though very young, do have a diminished ovarian reserve to the extent that delay of seeking fertility treatment is detrimental to there ability to conceiving a biological child
  2. Delaying childbearing does not mean ignoring fertility for an undefined period. Many options can be exercised to preserve fertility, including lifestyle modifications, egg freezing and embryo freezing.