Before checking the health risks of a nulliparous woman, it is important to understand the term, “nulliparous”. This term actually came from Latin where “null” means “not” and the word, “parere” means “to bring forth”.
This scientific term indicates a woman who did not give birth to a child due to any reason. Women who have given birth to stillborn children or those who gave birth to a child who could not survive outside the womb is also considered as a nulliparous woman.
Is it true that nulliparous women have more risk of having health problems? Unfortunately, it’s true. They have higher risk of reproductive organ cancers and breast cancer than parous women who gave birth to children.
It’s true that women may have plans to have children later in future but it’s important to consider age as well. Consider the birth control you use if you have such plans because few methods make it difficult to conceive later on long term usage.
Is Being Nulliparous Bad?
Now you know what nulliparous means but is it bad? With the introduction, you might have the thought that being nulliparous is certainly bad. There are many women who choose not to become a parent or mother. There are couples who choose not to have children and want to live childfree. Don’t you think it should be their choice? Certainly, we have rights to decide whether or not to have children. Our parents and grandparents keep telling us that this decision is not good and in fact it is a sin to stay childless. We don’t know why it is a sin but we certainly know that there are many health risks linked to it. Staying childless is definitely a choice but takes risks. Nulliparity is not bad but it is not good either.
Reproductive Cancer In Nulliparous Women
Science has proven this long back that nulliparous women have higher risk of developing reproductive organs related cancers such as ovarian cancer. Uterine cancer can also be included in this category. The exact reason is not known but we know the fact that women who have children get fewer ovulatory cycles compared to nulliparous women. This might be the reason behind this.
Breast Cancer In Nulliparous Women
The women in 20s have lower risk of breast cancer but the first 15 years after pregnancy has higher risk of having breast cancer. Women who gave birth to 5 babies have 50% less risk of facing breast cancer. It has been observed that breastfeeding reduces the risk of developing this cancer.
Women after the age of 35 have higher risk of giving birth to stillborn babies as per the study made on 1.8 million pregnant ladies.
IUD Usage and Pregnancy
Intra Uterine Device or IUD is a contraceptive method to avoid pregnancy. With this a woman can prevent pregnancy up to 12 years. But prolonged usage of this method can prevent a woman from getting pregnant later especially if it is first time. This statement was given by comparing this method with other contraceptive methods but later a research by WHO (World Health Organization) proved that there is no increased risk of infertility with this method.
Hip Fracture In Nulliparous Women
Hip bones support the baby while pregnant and hip bone fracture risk is 44% less in women who bear a child in the womb irrespective of the hip bone mineral density. So, this is less known health risk a nulliparous woman has.
The Research on 1.8 Million Pregnant Women
There was a study conducted on 1.8 million pregnant women between 1990 and 2011 in order to estimate the risk of stillbirths among women of different parity groups. Four different age groups were considered, i.e., 30 – 34, 35 – 39 and above 40 years. These three age groups were compared with the age group 25 – 29 years. They have considered many factors like education, habits, health conditions, BMI, history, etc.
The rate of stillbirths increased with the age as per the study. It showed 0.21% for 25 – 29 years age group, 0.31% for 30 – 34 years age group, 0.40% for 35 – 39 years age group and 0.57% in women above the age of 40 years.
Upon restricting the research to first time pregnancies, it showed increased risk among them. The same way when restricted this study to individual factors, it was found that nulliparous women were at higher risk of giving stillbirths. They have considered many such factors and gave brief descriptions. Similarly health issues are also related to these groups.
The Good Side
It’s true that there are many health risks linked to nulliparity but is there anything good about it? Yes, there is one good news related to it. Nulliparous women and those who had menopause have less risk of developing cognitive decline in later life. What is cognitive decline? It is the mental condition, memory, thinking skills, etc. linked with ageing process. The severe condition of it is dementia.
Is Labour Same For All The Women?
Labour period is different for all the mothers. It again differs for nulliparous women. For first time mom, the latent stage of the labour is 1.5 hours longer, the active labour is 2 hours longer and the second stage is 50 minutes is longer than other moms.
Age and Childbirth
It is already known that women who got pregnant for the first time in thirties have more problems. This might be because a woman gets more physiological changes during her first pregnancy. By the second or later pregnancies, usually there are very less physiological changes. It is suggested for a woman to conceive for the first time before she reaches thirty.
This research has revealed many unknown facts about pregnancy, nulliparous women and health issues. It’s better to reconfirm this and take appropriate precautions if you are planning to have children in future.