Ashanti’s recent announcement of her pregnancy with singer Nelly has has made her part of a growing trend: first-time mothers-to-be over the age of 40.


Labor and delivery nurse Tina Bitangcol said in a recent interview with, that she’s noticed a rise in her workplace of first-time mothers over 40.

“We have a term in the obstetric community called AMA, which is ‘advanced maternal age’ for people over 35,” she explained. “But we have now started to hear another term more frequently, which is vAMA, which stands for ‘very advanced maternal age’. Earlier in my career I had only heard that a couple times over a longer span—now I hear it more often.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of people under 30 giving birth is steadily declining. In fact, recent numbers suggest that, for that demographic, we are at the lowest point than we have been in a decade.

For women in their 40s, the percentage has increased by 6% from 2021 to 2022. This marks the first rise for women over 45 since 2016, with the actual number of births growing by 12%.

“We’ve started to see this population of people putting starting a family on hold to work hard, drive towards their goals with every ounce of effort sunk into that,” Bitangcol stated in her interview. “This doesn’t leave a lot of room for babies.”

“There are probably also people putting off having babies because they are saving for a home, or working towards clearing student debt, or just wanting to feel more secure in their job and income before committing to starting a family.”

Even though women in their 40’s are at a place in life where they are considered “ready” for the challenges and expense of parenting, having children later in life does come with significantly increased risks.

According to, those risks include:

  • A higher birth weight of your baby
  • Placenta previa
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Gestational hypertension (Preeclampsia)
  • Miscarriage or stillbirth
  • C-Section
  • Giving birth to a child with Down syndrome
  • Need for a blood transfusion


Photo: Ashanti Instagram

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

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