If you have clicked onto this post because you are currently coping with the loss of your child, we mourn with you and send our loving thoughts and prayers your way. This is a devastating experience, perhaps even more so than you thought possible, and we acknowledge your pain.
We would like to provide you with some information about the emotional and physical recovery involved in this process, in the hopes that it guides and comforts you through what you are enduring.
What to expect: initial feelings
This loss, like any other, will involve an avalanche of unpredictable emotions that will often appear without ostensible triggers.
In the early stages of this process, you might feel shock and denial. Disbelief about the situation will likely ensue, and perhaps make you numb as you attempt to accept it.
You might also begin to feel angry with yourself or others by things that normally do not affect you. Seeing pregnant women, in particular, could trigger feelings of jealousy or even anger. In these moments, remember that your emotions are completely normal and justified. Be kind to yourself as you give yourself a chance to heal.
Coping with your emotions
It is especially important to get adequate rest after the first 24 hours of a miscarriage, according to a guide from Kaiser Permanente, an American health care system. You might be tempted to get right back to your daily routine in an effort to move past the pain as quickly as possible, but it is important to allow yourself to slow down and fully experience the grief that will move through you. Dealing with these difficult emotions now will make accepting the situation and coping with future bouts of grief much easier.
In this vein, do not bottle up your emotions. Doing so will only keep the pain brewing for longer. Turn to your partner, a close friend, a family member, or a support group when you need a sympathetic ear.
You might also benefit from a ritual such as a religious service or memorial to help you gain closure and officially begin the grieving process.
You can expect to experience vaginal bleeding, lower abdominal pain, and breast engorgement/milk leaking for up to a week after the miscarriage, according to the American Pregnancy Association. After visiting a doctor for examination, you can prevent infection by:
- Using pads rather than tampons
- Taking showers instead of baths
- Not douching
- Not having sexual intercourse
To take additional precautions:
- Measure your temperature for five days after the miscarriage and call your doctor if it reaches 100° F or more
- Call your doctor if you have severe pain or heavy bleeding
Planning another pregnancy
Statistically speaking, most women who miscarry have healthy pregnancies the next time around.
Kaiser Permanente recommends waiting until at least one menstrual period has passed after the miscarriage to attempt another pregnancy, so as to ensure full healing of the uterus.
To facilitate a healthy next pregnancy, take a folic acid (a man-made version of vitamin B) because it can aid in the development of the fetus’s brain and spinal cord.
If you have any remaining concerns or questions, consult your healthcare provider.
Once again, we truly grieve with you during this time and wish you all the best.