As your due date approaches, you are more than ready to hold your bundle of joy in your hands. But not all things go as planned!
You marked your due date in bold colors on the calendar. But the day came and went without your baby making her grand entrance. So, what is going on? Has your baby taken permanent residence in your womb? That’s how it feels, right? But don’t worry, your baby will come out, in her own sweet time!
First things first – An overdue pregnancy is nothing abnormal. Many women watch as their due dates come and go. It is normal to give birth a week or two after your due date. But why exactly does it happen?
Why Do Some Pregnancies Go Past Their Due Date?
Here are a few reasons for being overdue in pregnancy:
1. Irregular Periods:
If you have always had irregular periods, chances are high that your due date was just wrong to begin with.
2. First Pregnancy:
Your body goes through a lot of wear and tear during pregnancy. If this is your first baby, you
If you are obese, you are likely to experience a number of problems during pregnancy. Obesity is also a big reason for overdue pregnancies (1).
[ Read: Is Overweight A Problem For Pregnancy ]
4. History Of Overdue Pregnancies:
If you have a history of baby coming late, chances are high that this pregnancy too will shoot past its due date. If overdue pregnancies run in your family, you are likely to experience one too.
5. You Are Growing A Boy:
If you are expecting a boy, you are more likely to have a post-term pregnancy (2).
Your ethnicity too plays a role when it comes to your due date! Asians and blacks are more likely to give birth before or near their due dates. While Caucasians are likely to be overdue (3).
7. Problem With Pregnancy:
Very rarely, an overdue pregnancy may occur due to problems with the placenta of the unborn baby.
[ Read: When Placenta Forms During Pregnancy ]
Are There Risks Of Overdue Pregnancy?
Most overdue pregnancies lead to nothing more than a few more days of backache, sleepless nights and other inconveniences. But in some cases, it can also cause more serious health issues. Here are some of them:
1. Can Make Vaginal Delivery Difficult:
If you are overdue, chances are high that your baby will be big. This can make vaginal delivery more difficult.
2. May Cause Oxygen Deficiency:
The amount of amniotic fluid in your uterus might begin to decrease as you inch past your due date. This can cause the umbilical cord to become pinched and lead to nutrient and oxygen deficiency in your baby (4).
3. Aged Placenta:
With time, your placenta ages and doesn’t work as well as it did before. This can make the uterus less than perfect for your baby.
4. Baby Might Inhale Meconium:
The chances of your baby inhaling meconium also goes up with an overdue pregnancy.
5. Increases Odds Of ADHD:
Many children born overdue are likely to experience behavioral issues like Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD in early childhood (5).
6. Can Cause Stillbirth:
In rare cases, overdue pregnancies can also lead to stillborn babies.
With these many risks, we are sure all you want right now is for labor to kick-start and your baby to make her grand appearance. So, what can you do to hurry things along? To start with, go see your doctor!