How to Deal with Miscarriage
You were thrilled with the result of your home pregnancy test but unfortunately your joy was short-lived. Miscarriage is more common than you may think — an estimated 1 in every 4 women suffer from a miscarriage early in their pregnancy.
The loss of an unborn child is profound on both parents, but especially hard on the mother. The grief of losing the baby you had been looking forward to welcoming is difficult to cope with — many women feel angry and blame themselves for the loss before they can accept the reality.
But, don’t worry; everyone comes to term with grief in different ways and it’s important to do what feels right for you. Some women find it important to mark a date on the calendar to remember their unborn child, others want to keep the ultrasound photo, or plant a tree.
Take Care of Your Physical Health
You are likely to continue bleeding for up to 2 weeks after the miscarriage, possibly accompanied by abdominal cramps and fatigue. Use sanitary pads instead of tampons to reduce the chance of infection. Your breasts could feel tender or might leak milk but the discomfort shouldn’t last and can be managed by a supportive bra. Keep track of your physical symptoms and see your gynaecologist immediately if you experience serious pain and prolonged bleeding.
Try Again, But Give Yourself Time
In a lot of cases, the exact cause of the miscarriage is unknown. But don’t be discouraged. Losing a pregnancy once does not mean you cannot carry your next pregnancy to term so know that there is hope and if you want to, you can try again. Wait for a few weeks (or until your doctor advises you) before having sex.
Physically, the female body is ready to conceive again usually after 3 months following the loss. But this can be emotionally challenging for some couples — give yourself time to cope and take as long as you need before trying again for a baby.
If this isn’t the first time you have miscarried, there could be an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. This leaflet by the NUH Women’s Centre outlines the possible causes of recurrent miscarriages and can be a first step for you to seek medical help.
Be Open with Your Partner
While the mother suffers a direct impact physically and emotionally, the father of the child will also be grieving and will also need to recover from the loss. Couples who suffer a miscarriage will likely find this life event will place a strain on their relationship. Have confidence that you will survive this difficult period together and consider seeking professional help either individually or as a couple.
Here is a list of resources you can access in Singapore to help you recover from a miscarriage: