Pregnancy is a fantastic time, but sometimes such a wonderful thing turns into an unpleasant experience that ends an otherwise successful pregnancy.
This is when a pregnant mom faces a miscarriage. According to the Mayo Clinic, this condition affects between %10-%20 of all pregnancies and is likely higher.
Miscarriage is the loss of a baby (called fetal loss) occurring in the first trimester or before 13 weeks of pregnancy (some sources mention 20 to 24 weeks).
If the baby loss occurs after the first trimester, stillbirth is used.
Get Familiar with the Common Symptoms of Miscarriage
Indeed, no one likes to deal with a miscarriage during her pregnancy. At the same time, it can be inevitable under some conditions.
It is essential to know the signs of a miscarriage, take action and consult your doctor or midwife to identify possible causes.
It is especially true if you have had more than two consecutive miscarriages.
When a miscarriage occurs, people experience cramps and vaginal bleeding or spotting similar to regular menstruation but more severe.
The bleeding becomes lighter over time. It is heavy at first, and blood clots with tissue passing are normal.
Bleeding may last for several hours and then become lighter and continue for a week or two.
The color of blood varies from pink to red to dark brown and even black.
Of course, bleeding during pregnancy can occur for various reasons, and it is not necessarily a sign of a miscarriage.
Severe abdominal pain similar to a regular period is another sign of miscarriage.
Lower back pain, pink-white mucus coming out of the vagina, hormonal changes, mood swings, loss of pregnancy symptoms, and weight loss can also act like early signs of miscarriage.
Contact your doctor or maternity hospital for help if you notice one or more signs.
Is It Possible That You've Missed the Symptoms of Early Miscarriage?
It is also possible that a miscarriage has occurred to someone while she is not aware of it.
Although the person experiences the signs of a miscarriage, including those mentioned above, she might mistake them as natural symptoms during pregnancy.
Confirmed miscarriage is detected through ultrasound imaging.
Note that one in every five women may experience a miscarriage.
This problem can reach 12% in women under 35, %16 to 45% in women aged 35 and 45, and 60% in women over 45, according to an article published in Advanced Fertility Center of Chicago.
So maternal age is somewhat effective on the rate of miscarriage.
Causes & Signs of Early Miscarriage
The factors that cause fetal loss and early miscarriage symptoms in the first trimester of pregnancy are different.
Still, the most crucial factor is a chromosomal abnormality.
It occurs due to damage to the sperm or egg, or the zygote.
Other causes of miscarriage symptoms include:
- Maternal age
- Uterine abnormalities
- Hormone fusion
- Cervical incompetency (In this case, a weak cervix causes fetal loss due to it being wide and open in the middle of pregnancy)
- Improper implantation of the fertilized egg
- Congenital heart disease, severe kidney disease, autoimmune disease, thyroid, uncontrolled Diabetes, severe malnutrition
- Environmental hazards and risks such as exposure to high levels of radiation or toxic substances
- Some medications
- Risky lifestyles such as smoking, drinking alcohol, and drug addiction.
How Many Types of Miscarriages Are There?
Although you may not know the reasons for miscarriage, there are different types of miscarriage.
Missed miscarriage is a miscarriage with no sign of expulsion despite fetal death.
It can only be discovered through ultrasound pictures, where the absence of fetal heart tones is detected.
The opposite is a complete miscarriage, where the fetus and the remaining pregnancy tissues are removed through the vaginal opening.
Heavy bleeding and abdominal pain are severe at first but disappear quickly.
Incomplete miscarriages show the same symptoms, but pregnancy tissue remains in the uterus.
In addition, there is the Threatened Miscarriage.
There are early signs of miscarriage, such as uterine bleeding early in pregnancy with cramps or lower back pain, but the cervix is closed.
Bleeding has occurred as a result of implantation.
Other conditions lead to miscarriage: embryonic pregnancy, ectopic pregnancy, and molar pregnancy.
Finally, contrary to popular belief, it is good to note that exercise, stress, or having sex with your partner does not cause miscarriage.
How to Prevent a Miscarriage during Pregnancy?
Chromosomal abnormalities indeed cause many miscarriages, but by adopting a healthy lifestyle, you can reduce the chances of its occurrence during pregnancy.
At least to the extent that you have control over it.
So consider things like regular exercising, having a healthy diet, weight control, alcohol abstinence, quitting smoking, and taking the necessary vitamins before conception.
What to Do After a Miscarriage?
Two measures taken after a diagnosis of miscarriage are dilation and curettage d&c surgery.
Sometimes medications are prescribed to control the bleeding as well.
Of course, it all depends on what stage of pregnancy you are in.
In the early weeks of pregnancy, it will be easier for your body to expel the fetal remains without medical intervention.
Call your doctor if you are still bleeding or have a high fever or chills.
Aside from medical intervention, it is essential to receive emotional support.
Unfortunately, something sad has happened to you, but that does not mean the world's end! Your dream of hugging your little one will surely come true.
Try to talk to your husband/partner at this time. Losing a baby has been difficult for him, too, so sharing your feelings can help you overcome a hard time.
If family members or friends are not at hand, opt for online forums.
In these forums, people like you share their experiences of miscarriage and support each other.
This article reviewed miscarriage, its definition, and signs of a miscarriage, prevention, and related treatment measures.
You now know that it primarily occurs due to chromosome abnormalities and is influenced by environmental and lifestyle factors.
We suggested ways to prevent miscarriage that you can incorporate into your life routine.
We also stressed the importance of receiving emotional support during this time.
Some people may be worried about pregnancy after miscarriage.
They wonder if they can have a healthy baby in the next attempt and get pregnant after miscarriage.
Consult a doctor if you have three or more consecutive miscarriages in your first trimester.