(HealthDay News) — From 2000 to 2014, the age of first-time mothers increased 1.4 years — from 24.9 years old on average to 26.3 years, according to a January data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

All states and the District of Columbia reported delays in motherhood since 2000. Washington, D.C., saw the highest increase — 3.4 years — followed by Oregon where the average age rose 2.1 years, the researchers found.

First births among teenagers fell 42% since 2000 — from about 1 in 4 to 1 in 7. Also, first births to women aged 30 to 34 rose 28%, while first births among women aged 35 and older increased 23%.

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In 2014, Asian or Pacific Islander women had the oldest average age for their first birth (29.5), while American Indian and Alaska Native women had the youngest (23.1). Differences were seen among blacks, whites, and Hispanics, too. For white women in 2014, average age at first birth was 27; for Central and South Americans it was 26.5, and for women of Cuban descent it was 27. The average age was lower for Puerto Ricans (24.1 years), blacks (24.2), and Mexican Americans (23.7).


  1. Matthews TJ, Hamilton BE. Mean age of mothers is on the rise: United States, 2000–2014. NCHS data brief, no 232. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2016.