Coping with a miscarriage
The loss of a pregnancy before 20 weeks gestation is known as spontaneous miscarriage. Most women who experience spontaneous miscarriages (around 75-80 percent) will have this occur in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy.
Medical experts estimate that around one in four pregnancies end in miscarriage, with many miscarriages going unreported or even unrecognised due to the fact that they often occur in the early stages of a pregnancy.
When a miscarriage does occur, it is usually because the pregnancy is not developing properly. It's important to remember conception is a very complicated process.
The most common sign that something is not right is vaginal bleeding. Approximately 30-50 percent of women who experience significant bleeding will suffer a miscarriage.
It is normal to experience a range of feelings after a miscarriage.
These feelings may include:
- Sadness and a feeling that you are totally alone
These feelings can sometimes linger for a long time and, if that is the case, that is okay. There is no set time limit to when you should stop feeling and no barometer of exactly how deeply you should be feeling either.
As well as your natural grief, your body is also still undergoing hormonal changes that may leave you feeling more vulnerable.
Talking may help. Families, close friends or finding other people with similar experiences online through Kidspot's Message Board. Don't forget to include, and talk to, your husband or partner who may also be experiencing similar feelings.
If you have concerns that your feelings are taking over and that you might be having depressive episodes that are disrupting your daily life, please speak to your doctor and seek professional support.
When you feel ready, try again. You may have concerns and anxiety that it will happen again but, rest assured - in the majority of cases, the next pregnancy proceeds to full-term.
Some doctors recommend waiting one cycle before trying again. Your ovaries will generally release another egg two weeks after a miscarriage, so if you do want to wait, you may wish to consider contraception.