Risk factors in pregnancy are well studied and documented, but good prenatal care and support can help minimize those risks.

Let’s see some of the most common risk factors that play a role in conception and pregnancy.

Pregnancy Risk Factors

Nutritional deficiencies

The western diet is often abundant but poor in key nutrients. Therefore, going over dietary habits and testing can play a huge role in the outcome of conception and pregnancy.

Lifestyle choices

Smoking, drinking, drugs, and sedentarism can negatively impact conception and pregnancy. The good news is that we can work towards improving these factors.

Structural abnormalities in the uterus or cervix

Some structural issues complicate or even prevent pregnancy or heighten the chances of miscarriage or difficult birth. Still, the good news is that some of them can be improved or corrected.


Being under 18 or over 35 can worsen the chances of a healthy pregnancy, as it increases the likelihood of premature birth, low weight babies, preeclampsia, chromosomal abnormalities or developing conditions like gestational diabetes or high blood pressure.


Being over or underweight can lead to difficulties such as gestational diabetes, high blood pressure or premature birth and low weight babies.


Sexually transmitted infections can be transmitted to babies, so it is advisable to be tested before getting pregnant.

Preexisting medical conditions such as diabetes, autoimmune diseases or uncontrolled thyroid problems can lead to difficulties, so a prenatal consultation is essential if a medical condition is known.

Multiple pregnancies (twin pregnancies) are statistically riskier, and a pregnancy history with previous complications make future pregnancies more likely to present the same issues.


Prenatal consultation is always advised to get the care and assistance needed to decrease or control the risks.

Of course, these are just risk factors. Not everyone who falls into these categories will suffer complications, and maybe someone who is risk-free will develop a condition during pregnancy.

But it is important to have information and be empowered to minimize risks and achieve a happy and healthy pregnancy.

By Claudia Martinez del Hoyo

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