Miscarriage- Causes, Symptoms, Risk, Types, Prevention, And Treatment
What You Should Know About Miscarriage?
Spontaneous loss of a pregnancy before the 20th week is known as a miscarriage. It typically occurs in the first three months or trimester of pregnancy. There are about 10% to 20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage. But the actual percentage is very higher since many miscarriages occur so early that a woman doesn’t realize that she is pregnant. Most of the miscarriages occur just because the fetus isn’t developing normally. Miscarriage also happens due to various medical reasons that are not under the control of the person. Take a step forward to understand what might cause a miscarriage and what the risk associated with it? We will also discuss the prevention related to it.
Signs And Symptoms of Miscarriage
The symptoms of miscarriage might vary depending upon the stage of your pregnancy. In a few cases, it happens so quickly that many women are not even aware of their pregnancy before they miscarry.
Some of the common symptoms of miscarriage are as below:-
- heavy spotting
- vaginal bleeding
- mild to severe back pain
- cramping or severe abdominal pain
- discharge of tissue or fluid from your vagina
You need to call your doctor right away if you experience these symptoms during your pregnancy. It is also possible that these symptoms occur but you don’t have to face a miscarriage. But still, your doctor will ask you to go through tests to ensure everything is fine.
What Are the Possible Causes of Miscarriage?
There are a few things that might increase the risk of miscarriage that we are discussing here. If you are having difficulty during your pregnancy then your doctor might check for some causes of miscarriage. During pregnancy, your developing fetus requires nutrients through your blood. This helps your fetus to grow. If you are finding an answer for why causes miscarriage in early pregnancy then the reason is that the fetus doesn’t develop normally. There are many factors due to which miscarriage occurs that are as follows.
Genetic or Chromosome Issues
When the fetus is developing then one set of chromosomes is contributed by the mother and another by the father. Have a look at the chromosome abnormalities that are as follows:-
- Intrauterine fetal demise – In this the embryo forms but stops developing before you feel any symptoms of pregnancy loss.
- Blighted ovum- In this, no embryo is formed.
- Molar pregnancy-In this both sets of chromosomes belongs to the father, and no fetal development occurs.
- Partial molar pregnancy- In this the mother’s chromosomes remain, but the father also provides two sets of chromosomes.
Due to a damaged egg or sperm cell, errors may occur during the division of the cells of the embryo. When the problem with the placenta occurs then also miscarriage happens.
Underlying Conditions and Lifestyle
Underlying health conditions and lifestyle also affects the development of a fetus. Exercise and sexual intercourse don’t cause miscarriage.
Conditions that might interfere with fetus development include the following:
- food poisoning
- hormonal issues
- few medications
- use of drug or alcohol
- poor diet, or malnutrition
- untreated thyroid disease
- problems with the cervix
- abnormally shaped uterus
- severe high blood pressure
Check with your doctor before taking any medications as it may be harmful to you or your fetus development.
Miscarriage or Period?
Many times, a miscarriage occurs before when you are not aware of your pregnancy. Some of the symptoms of a miscarriage involve bleeding and cramping during your period. So if you’re not sure whether you are having a period or a miscarriage then there are several factors to consider.
- Symptoms: If you experience severe or worsen abdominal pain along with the passing of fluids and large clots indicate having a miscarriage.
- Time: An early miscarriage in pregnancy is usually mistaken for a period. However, this is less likely to happen after eight weeks of pregnancy.
- Duration of symptoms: The symptoms of a miscarriage get worse and last longer than a period.
If you’re experiencing heavy bleeding then you must contact your doctor as soon as possible.
Miscarriage rate by week
Most miscarriages happen within the first trimester i.e. the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. During the earliest weeks of pregnancy, the woman is at the highest risk of a miscarriage. Once the pregnancy duration reaches 6 weeks, the risk drops. After 13 to 20 weeks the risk of miscarriage drops further. Though the complications may arise at any point of pregnancy so you need to take care of yourself.
Risk of Miscarriage
Most miscarriages occur due to natural and unpreventable causes. However, there are certain risk factors that increase the chances of having a miscarriage are as follows-
- drug use
- body trauma
- alcohol abuse
- earlier miscarriages
- disease like diabetes
- uterus or cervix issues
- underweight or overweight
- excessive consumption of caffeine
- exposure to harmful chemicals or radiation
Women who are over 35 years of age have a high risk of miscarriage than those who are younger.
Types of Miscarriage
There are many different types of miscarriage that depend on your symptoms and the stage of your pregnancy. Reach the doctor to diagnose your underlying condition that is mentioned below-
- Complete miscarriage: All pregnancy tissues are expelled from your body.
- Incomplete miscarriage: Some tissue or placental material is passed and few remain in your body.
- Missed miscarriage: The embryo dies and you are completely unaware of it.
- Threatened miscarriage: Bleeding and cramps bring a possible miscarriage.
- Inevitable miscarriage: Bleeding, cramping, and cervical dilation indicates that a miscarriage is inevitable.
- Septic miscarriage: An infection within your uterus.
Not all miscarriages can be prevented but few precautions can help you to maintain a healthy pregnancy. Here are a few recommendations:
- Get regular prenatal care,
- Avoid alcohol, drugs, and smoking when you are pregnant,
- Maintain your weight before and during your pregnancy,
- Avoid infections, wash your hands properly use sanitizer and maintain social distancing,
- Limit the amount of caffeine to 200 milligrams per day only.
- Take vitamins to ensure that your developing fetus gets enough nutrients.
- Eat a healthy, well-balanced diet with lots of fruits and vegetables.
Having a miscarriage doesn’t mean you won’t conceive again in the future. Most women who face miscarriage have healthy pregnancies later.
The treatment depends upon the type of miscarriage that you faced. If there’s no pregnancy tissue left in your body then you won’t require any treatment. If some tissue remains in your body, then few different treatment options are available-
- Expectant management, where you wait for the remaining tissue to pass naturally from your body
- Medical management to help you pass the rest of the remaining tissue
- Surgical management involves the surgical removal of tissues.
There is no such risk for the miscarriage treatment and you can work with your doctor to determine which treatment is best for you.