US Fertility Rates Hits All-Time Low: Baby Crisis?

US Fertility Rates Hits All-Time Low: Baby Crisis?

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US Fertility Rate Hits an All Time Low

If you are thinking that we might be hearing more and more about fertility issues, infertility struggles and couples not having babies, it’s not in our heads, it’s actually true!  Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here
The fact is that fertility rates just hit an all time low.

Yes, that is right, the fertility rates in the United States just reached the lowest point that they have ever been since fertility rates have ever been recorded more than one hundred years ago.

Yes, that is crazy and unprecedented. For 2016, there were around 62 births recorded for every 1000 women of childbearing age (between 15 and 44). For the first quarter of the 2017 year, that number dropped to around 61.5 births per 1000 women.

Drop in fertility and birth in US

The report on this, released by the National Center for Health Statistics, indicated that this drop in fertility was significant, and a far greater increase than experts expected it to be. This can sound a little bit concerning, of course, but experts say that there is no need for alarm.

US Fertility Rate Consistently Dropping

While it is true that the number of women giving birth has been significantly declining for the last few years, now the birth rate has reached a historic low

Experts say that the main factor for this decline is that fewer teens and 20-somethings are having babies.

While the number of women in their 30s and 40s having babies actually did increase, it did not increase enough to make up for the declining number of teens and 20-somethings that were not having babies.

While this data is only obtained from birth certificates, we can’t really tell exactly the reasons WHY less women are having children, but experts say they do have their ideas.

Of course, none of these are proven, and they are just ideas that experts have as to why the fertility rate might be declining. We will definitely need more information as to why this is happening, although that information might be hard to come by.

Is the Fertility Rate Drop Due to Millenials?

According to experts on the subject, the declining fertility rate comes down to millenials and their decisions to delay having kids or not have children all together. Although we can’t really determine the reasons, it’s obvious that millenials are not having children as early as women in previous years, and some millenials are choosing not to have children at all.

Are the millenials delaying their pregnancy plans?

Some experts say that millenials are strapped for cash, that they are still living at home, or still focused on education, and are just not at the point to have children just yet.

What will this mean for the future and our country’s economy?

That remains to be seen, but this new information does mean that the birth rate has dropped below what is referred to as the “replacement rate,” which is the number of births that must be met to maintain the same average population.

Will this mean a population crisis? Some experts are worried about what the declining numbers mean for the future but other experts say that this decline is just a fluke, and that there is nothing to worry about.

Is the Fertility Rate Drop Due to Elective Birth Rate Decline?

Some experts say that the decline in the birth rate is due to elective reasons, meaning that women are choosing to have fewer babies or are delaying giving birth on purpose.

For millenials, more and more of them are staying at home and living with their parents until a later age, or returning to live with their parents after a brief experience in the workforce. Many millenials are spending more and more time in college and that can delay their desire to get pregnant.

As for other women, in their 30’s and 40’s, many of these women are taking more time to focus on career and other aspirations, and are not as focused on having children as women used to be in previous years.

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Another really popular theory is that the Great Recession of 2007 has really caused a lot of couples to struggle financially and economically and in turn, put off having children until later. The recession caused many couples to have to reenter the workforce or go back to college in order to try to make more money, and this can be a reason for putting off having children.

All of these reasons are elective reasons, meaning that women are not having children on purpose and not due to other reasons.

Is Fertility Rate Drop Out of Our Hands?

There are some experts that believe that there are other reasons for the decline in birth rates as well. Many experts actually believe that the reasons for the birth rate decline are non elective, meaning they are not things that couples are doing on purpose, and that the reason for the birth rate decline is out of our hands.

Possible causes of infertility in women.

In fact, many experts believe that fertility issues are on the increase, and that’s why we aren’t seeing as many births.

This can definitely be a real issue when it comes to fertility and the birth rate. It does seem that that we are seeing more and more fertility issues these days, whether it be in the news or in people that we know in our daily life.

Is this because it is becoming less and less taboo to talk about fertility problems?

Or is it because fertility problems are running rampant and becoming out of control?

What is the real deal about this, and what does this exactly mean for our future as a country and for our fertility as a whole?

Reasons for Increased Fertility Problems

What are the reasons that we could potentially be seeing more and more fertility problems that are actually getting to the point that they are affecting the natural birth rate?

First of all, let’s just get it out there: we, as a whole population here in the United States, are not taking care of ourselves the way we should.

Let’s be completely honest, we don’t eat right, we don’t exercise, we don’t get enough vitamins and minerals, and many, many of us are overweight. All of those things affect fertility, combined with the fact that many of us are guilty of things like smoking, drinking, or other harmful lifestyle choices.

unhealthy lifestyle is the number one cause of infertility

We are also exposed more and more and more to environmental factors like chemicals and pollution, which can contribute to fertility. All of these things combined can lead to problems with fertility and can be a contributing factor towards the lowering birth rate.

In fact, experts say that as many as 1 in 6 couples suffer from infertility today, up from 1 in 8 couples only two years ago.

This can actually mean that we might, as a whole community, be less focused on health and taking care of our bodies than we used to be. This can actually be a contributing factor to our infertility as a whole nation, and while it is probably not the “one and done” reason for declining fertility rates, I am sure that it is definitely a factor that comes into play in these cases.

What Does This Mean?

We can’t deny what the numbers say.

The birth rate is really at the lowest point that it has ever been since records have been kept, around 1909.

This is crazy, and it does cause a little bit of concern, especially when thinking about the future and whether or not fertility rates will continue to decline as time goes on.

Some experts even say that we are headed for a “baby crisis” if we don’t find a way to increase the number of births here in the next few years.

However, economic standpoints do not point to things getting better any time soon, which is a little bit disheartening. However, many experts expect fertility rates to get better, as the overall economy begins to straighten out and calm down a little bit.

Honestly, it is just a “wait and see” type of thing, and we will just have to patiently wait to see what is going to happen with fertility rates in the next few years. We will follow this story closely to see if birth rates continue to drop or if they will pick back up in the near future.

What Can We Do?

For women who are trying to conceive at a time like this when it seems like the fertility rate is tanking, it can be a little bit disheartening and it might seem that no one is able to get pregnant right now. However, that does not have to be the case.

This is just an example of the reasons why it is so important to be able to take control of our fertility and be the best that we can be.

Ways to stay healthy and boost fertility

Keeping yourself healthy and in good shape is going to be the number one thing to improve chances of getting pregnant and improve fertility.

First of all, it’s important to keep in mind that diet and exercise do play a big role in our fertility. Eating a healthy, well balanced diet filled with whole grains, lean proteins, full fat dairy products and organic fruits and veggies will go a long way towards improving overall health.

Another great plan for improving fertility will be to cut back on sugary sweets, fast foods, and over processed foods.

These foods are not good for us as it is, and eating too many of them is going to do nothing but put a damper on fertility. Making sure to take a daily prenatal vitamin is a really good starting point as well, as this can help to bridge nutritional gaps and improve overall nutrition and health. This can really improve a woman’s chances of conceiving.

Getting enough exercise and reducing stress as much as possible is also going to be something that really helps to improve overall health and well being as well as fertility as a whole

Fertility health starts at home and we really need to remember that.

Each individual couple is responsible for their own fertility health at home and building a great fertility foundation will go a long way towards improving a couple’s chances of getting pregnant. Be sure to start ovulation tracking, so you are able to time your efforts just right as well.

In Conclusion

As we finish up this article, we are going to close with saying that it is obvious that stuff is happening when it comes with the national fertility rate. The rate of fertility is dropping, but it is so very hard to tell the exact reasons for that fertility drop.

We can’t really tell as of right now whether the fertility drop is because of elective reasons (meaning people are not having babies on purpose) or non elective reasons (meaning there are reasons for a fertility drop that are out of a couple’s control).

We really can’t say right now, as much more research will need to be done on this topic. It will definitely be very interesting to see in the next few months and years how the fertility rate continues to change, and if it begins to improve or continues to drop.

There are so very many reasons that this fertility rate could be dropping and that these things could be happening in our country and in our society. However, experts urge us not to panic and not to worry about what is happening.

Number one way to improve fertility and get pregnant fast - staying healthy

We are not having a “baby emergency” or a “baby shortage” as some people might be beginning to believe.

Most, if not all, experts say that these things like this begin to ebb and flow as the economy and people’s everyday life changes. Things like this go up and down, and will eventually settle down and even out over time.

It is definitely something that we need to pay attention to and something that we need to be watching, but definitely do not need to be panicked about or overly worried about. Keep your eyes on the prize if you are trying to conceive, and you will be good to go when it comes to getting pregnant and improving the fertility rate in your own home.

That’s going to be the number one thing that we can all do in our own homes to improve the overall national fertility rate!

So if you’re trying to get pregnant, good for you – you are doing your part to help the national fertility rate!

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Dr. Renee Hanton, MD
Dr. Renee Hanton, MD | ConceiveEasy
Dr. Renee Hanton is ConceiveEasy's Senior Physician with expertise in the diagnosis and treatment of infertility. Dr. Hanton specializes in the endocrine causes of infertility, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).