Pregnancy is always an exciting time for moms-to-be. However, around 10% to 15% of pregnancies result in miscarriage, which can be extremely devastating for the parents. For this reason, it’s essential to be well-informed, so you can make your way through the turmoil while retaining your physical and mental health.
When Do Miscarriages Happen?
Miscarriage is defined as a loss of pregnancy in the first twenty weeks of the pregnancy. In the majority of cases, 80% of pregnancy loss happens in the first twelve, but there are instances when miscarriages are too early, and the mothers don’t even realize that they are pregnant. There is nothing one can do to stop the miscarriage once it has started, but treatments are provided to prevent infection and heavy bleeding.
Doctors suggest expectant management, with which no treatment is needed as the placenta, fetus, and pregnancy sac will pass through naturally – this process might take a few days or up to three to four weeks. It can be extremely challenging to wait for a miscarriage, but it starts with cramping and spotting, and soon after, the heavy bleeding starts. Some doctors can recommend medicines to speed up the process.
What Causes A Miscarriage?
There are different factors that contribute to a miscarriage. First trimester pregnancies can lead to a miscarriage because of abnormalities in chromosomes. In addition, miscarriage can happen because of embryo implantation issues and the inability of the embryo to develop. Some other causes of miscarriage include:
- Hormonal issues
- Thyroid issues
- Uncontrollable diabetes
- Exposure to toxic chemicals
- Using drugs and alcohol
Age can also influence the chances of a miscarriage. Women in their late 30s and 40s are more likely to miscarry compared to younger women. The early signs of miscarriage include bleeding, painful cramps, and vaginal spotting, but you must confirm it with your doctor. Some other signs of miscarriage include;
- Heavy bleeding
- Severe pain in the shoulder and tummy
- High fever
- Fainting or dizzy feeling
- Bad-smelling fluid coming out the vagina
- Pain during bowel movements
How Does A Miscarriage Affect Mental Health?
Miscarriage can be an extremely traumatic event that impacts every woman. It can result in depression, grief, anxiety, or even PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). Around 30% to 50% of women who have miscarried struggle with anxiety, while up to 15% of women struggle with depression, which lasts over four months.
Approximately one out of ten women struggle with PTSD within the first three months of pregnancy loss, which includes re-experiencing the feelings, flashbacks, and nightmares. In addition, some women tend to avoid situations that give them flashbacks of the loss.
For the most part, it can limit opportunities related to economic and social participation. In addition, it tends to limit the caregiving and self-care opportunities for women, which can negatively influence their physical health as well.
Things To Do For Emotional Healing After Miscarriage
Getting back on track after an emotionally-disastrous journey can be extremely challenging. However, to try get back to your normal life, you can try out the following tips;
- Reach out to a mental health provider as they can help you process complicated feelings and emotions
- Don’t give up on self-care; make sure you are getting a balanced diet, staying hydrated, and exercising
- Try a new physical activity that helps with emotional release, such as karate or boxing
- Opt for postnatal massage for a therapeutic experience
Lastly, remember that you can get pregnant again. Your grief and trauma is valid, but your experience does not have to define or your determine your entire path to parenthood. Stay strong and know that anything is possible!