Gestational Surrogate Requirements: What You Need to Know

  • Updated
  • 5 mins read
  • Published

Gestational Surrogate Requirements: What You Need to Know

Picture this: A couple dreams of having a child but has had years of difficulty conceiving on their own. Now imagine being the one who can make their dreams come true. How amazing does that seem? That’s the role (and the power) of a gestational surrogate.

Can Anyone Be a Surrogate?

It takes an extraordinary person to be a gestational surrogate. Because it’s such a serious and life-changing role, not everyone is qualified to become one. To ensure the safety of all people involved, there are certain guidelines that the gestational surrogate must meet.

If you’re intrigued by the idea of helping others start a family, but you’re not sure what it entails, let’s explore the gestational surrogate requirements and the reasons they exist:

Be a United States Citizen or Legal Resident

Being a citizen or legal resident ensures you have access to necessary healthcare services and legal protections throughout the surrogacy process.

Be between the ages of 21 – 41

The age range of 21 to 41 is considered optimal for pregnancy because it lowers the risk of complications for both the surrogate and the baby.

The higher a woman’s age, the higher the risk a pregnancy can become. One study published in the journalObstetrics & Gynecology found that women over age 35 were more likely to experience gestational diabetes, miscarriage, pre-eclampsia, and have babies with low birth weight. Staying within the age range of 21 to 40 for gestational surrogacy can help minimize the risk of these complications for both the surrogate and the baby, ensuring a safer and healthier pregnancy.

Have one or more children of your own

Having children of your own demonstrates that you have experience with pregnancy and childbirth, making you better prepared for the physical and emotional demands of surrogacy.

Not had more than 3 C-sections

Studies show that having multiple C-sections can increase the risk of complications during pregnancy and delivery. Limiting the number of previous C-sections helps ensure a safer pregnancy and delivery for both you and the baby.

Have a body mass index (BMI) of under 33

Maintaining a healthy BMI is crucial for lowering the risk of complications during pregnancy, as well as complications during delivery. Research shows that over-weight women have a higher risk of problems during labor and delivery compared to women who are not over-weight. These problems include slower labor progression, fetal distress, and the need for:

  • Labor induction and oxytocin
  • Operative vaginal delivery
  • Emergency c-section

Be a non-smoker and non-drug user

Smoking and drug use can have serious negative effects on pregnancy outcomes, including low birth weight, preterm birth, and birth defects. As a gestational surrogate, it’s essential to maintain a healthy lifestyle to support a successful pregnancy.

Be in good physical & mental health

Physical and mental health are closely linked to pregnancy outcomes. Many studies show that mental health disorders faced by women during pregnancy are a significant risk factor for adverse delivery outcomes. Being in good physical and mental health ensures you can handle the physical demands of pregnancy and the emotional challenges of surrogacy.

Not had any major pregnancy complications

Previous pregnancy complications, such as preterm birth, preeclampsia, or placental abnormalities, can increase the risk of complications in future pregnancies. Avoiding major pregnancy complications helps ensure a safer surrogacy journey.

Agree to psychological, drug & criminal screening

Psychological, drug, and criminal screenings are essential to gauge your mental health, substance use, and criminal history. These screenings help ensure that you are mentally and emotionally prepared for the surrogacy journey and that you can provide a safe environment for the baby.

Have a supportive partner, friend, or family member

Having a supportive network is crucial during the surrogacy process. Several studies demonstrate that women who have plenty of social support during pregnancy are less likely to report stress, discomfort, or symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Whether it’s your partner, a friend, or a family member, having someone by your side to provide emotional support and practical assistance can make the journey smoother and more rewarding.

Not had more than 6 births

Limiting the number of previous births reduces the risk of complications associated with multiple pregnancies and deliveries. This helps ensure a safer and healthier pregnancy for both you and the baby you will carry.

Gestational surrogate requirements exist for important reasons. The main goal is to have a healthy pregnancy and delivery for both the surrogate and the baby. By ensuring you meet the above criteria, you set yourself up for greater safety and success during the surrogacy process.

Building Families with Stronger Together Surrogacy

At Stronger Together Surrogacy, we’re committed to supporting individuals and couples on their journey to parenthood through surrogacy. Our experienced team provides personalized care and comprehensive services, including matching with surrogates and navigating the legal and medical aspects of the process. If you’re ready to take the next step toward building your family, contact us to learn more.