Miscarriage

Understanding pregnancy loss

Miscarriage statistics suggest that up to 10 percent of all child conceptions end in pregnancy loss. Research shows that chromosomal abnormalities are the root cause of the majority of miscarriages, and in many cases, there isn't much you can do to prevent this from happening. However, obstetricians agree that regular exercise, a healthy diet, effective stress management and proper folic acid levels can minimize the risk of having a miscarriage. Also, you should strive to maintain a healthy body weight, both before and during pregnancy, and quit smoking and drinking alcohol if you become pregnant.

Still, miscarriages can occur despite preventative measures. It's important that you know what can cause a miscarriage and that you're able to recognize the signs of miscarriage, since you may need medical treatment to avoid subsequent health problems and to minimize your risk of future pregnancy loss.

 

What Can Cause a Miscarriage?

In many cases, miscarriage occurs spontaneously and the root cause or causes can never be identified. However, some of the factors or conditions that can cause a miscarriage include:

  • Infections
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Underlying health issues such as diabetes, high blood pressure or an unhealthy body weight
  • Improper nutrition during pregnancy
  • Exposure to toxic substances or radiation
  • Lifestyle risk factors, such as smoking, alcohol or drug use
  • Advanced age (pregnancy after 40 carries a higher risk)

Also, is important to note that many miscarriages do not have a single cause, but instead result from a confluence of risk factors conspiring simultaneously.

Miscarriage Symptoms

Some of the signs of miscarriage you should watch for include sharp, pronounced and persistent back pain, weight loss during pregnancy, premature contractions or a sudden decrease or absence of normal pregnancy symptoms. If you notice that your mucus takes on a whitish-pink color, or if you experience unusual bleeding during pregnancy, you should contact your health care provider right away to be evaluated for a potential miscarriage.

Medical treatment may be necessary to prevent infection, stop internal bleeding and remove the fetus if it doesn't expel itself. Subsequent pregnancy after a miscarriage carries a heightened risk of complications, so before trying to have another baby, it's vital that you make a full and complete recovery, spend some time getting in shape by combining regular exercise and a healthy diet, and have the green light from your doctor.