New research shows women who allow only short intervals of time between pregnancies are at an increased risk for developing complications.
Researchers in Scotland studied nearly 90,000 women who had given birth twice between 1992 and 1998. Results of the study show women with complicated first births are much more likely to become pregnant again in less than six months. They are also more likely to be younger than 20 years old, smoke, and live in a socially and economically deprived area.
Women who did not wait long before becoming pregnant with a subsequent child were at an increased risk for complications such as premature birth, neonatal death, and low birth weight. Even women who did not have complicated first pregnancies were at an increased risk for premature birth and neonatal death.
Authors of the study say women should be informed about the potential risk of complications. They say contraceptive advice should be give to those who are most likely to conceive shortly after giving birth -- teenagers and women who have lost a newborn baby.