Childbirth rates in Japan may be low, but couples are getting started earlier than before.

Japan’s all-time low childbirth rate likely isn’t news to you at this point, so it may surprise you to learn that couples are trying to have children earlier than previous years. Rohto Pharmaceutical conducted their annual survey of Japanese couples with surprising results across the board. They asked 24,992 men and women between the ages of 18 and 70 a number of questions related to marriage and pregnancy, and here’s what they found out.

First off, couples are trying to get pregnant earlier. In 2018, 23.4 percent of couples aged 24-29 said they wanted to start having children; but in 2019, that percentage jumped to 28.6 percent. That means more than one in four Japanese couples want to have kids while they’re still in their 20s!

▼ The average age of conception also went from 32.3 to 32.1 years old. Not too shabby in just one year.

Couples in the survey also want to get married earlier. In 2018, 38.5 percent of couples said they wanted to get married between the ages of 25-29 in 2018, but that increased to 41.4 percent in the most recent survey. Almost a third said they wanted to have kids while they’re still in their 20s as well.

The survey also revealed measures that couples trying to conceive are taking to increase their chances of pregnancy. 14.7 percent said they were cutting back on caffeine, 11.7 percent are keeping their bodies warm as much as possible, and 15.5 percent are trying to get a healthy level of exercise.

▼ It isn’t easy to be a woman trying to get pregnant.

One of the biggest possible reasons for this shift in attitude is that more couples are having difficulty conceiving. Waiting until later in life to have kids, a decrease in sexual activity with age, and partners’ schedules not lining up are all very real contributors to these difficulties. That’s probably why more couples are taking the bull by the horns and putting a bun in the oven while they have the time.

It’s probably important to note that this doesn’t necessarily mean the birth rate is increasing. For that to happen, a lot of work still needs to be done, especially in the area of traditional gender roles.

Source: PR Times
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert image: Pakutaso
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