Posts filed under: Miscarriage + Loss

Miscarriage + Loss

Miscarriage + Pregnancy Loss

Miscarriage, also known as pregnancy loss, is a spontaneous and typically unexpected loss of a pregnancy before the baby can survive outside of the womb.

Our Top Miscarriage Articles

  1. Beth’s ectopic pregnancy story
  2. Our favorite miscarriage gifts
  3. Why you don’t have to attend a baby shower after miscarriage
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Medical terms are at odds with the way most (though not all) women experience such loss. Scientifically, the baby is called an embryo or a fetus, and the miscarriage is referred to as an abortion. But, to most pregnant women, this is a personal loss that causes emotional grief, anxiety, depression, guilt, and self-blame. For the record, self-blame is totally unnecessary. 

How many pregnancies end in miscarriage? Estimates suggest that up to 25% of pregnancies end in miscarriage, though many before a woman knows she’s pregnant. You can join the 1 in 4 community on Instagram.

Signs of Miscarriage

There are a few warning signs that you can look out for. Many pregnant women panic when they notice bleeding in the early stages of pregnancy. 

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Call your doctor if you experience red bleeding, but don’t panic. There are many reasons bleeding can occur during pregnancy that don’t result in pregnancy loss.

There are many potential causes of bleeding in early pregnancy, including implantation bleeding, subchorionic hematoma, and more. 

Miscarriage Symptoms

Symptoms can include any or all of the following: 

  • light spotting to heavy bleeding
  • back pain
  • blood clots
  • cramps. 

A potential sign can be loss of regular pregnancy symptoms, but pregnancy symptoms themselves are not directly associated with miscarriage. Pregnancy symptoms may also regulate due to hormonal changes, and some women experience pregnancy with no symptoms at all. 

Miscarriage Causes

There are a few causes that can induce a miscarriage, but Undefining Motherhood wants to be clear on one main point first: the miscarrying mother is not at fault. Exercising, drinking coffee, going to work, or having sex do not induce miscarriages.

Rather, miscarriages are almost always caused by genetic or physiological circumstances.

  • Fetal genetic abnormalities: sometimes, during conception, chromosomes don’t work together to form a baby that can survive outside the womb
  • Physical anomalies within the mother’s body: things like uterine abnormalities, blood clots, pools of blood in the gestational sac, major autoimmune disorders, et cetera
  • Extreme trauma: car accidents and other tragic events that injure the womb
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Note that trauma must be extreme. Many women endure experiences like bad car accidents and still carry a successful pregnancy. Research estimates that 50% of miscarriages are caused by genetic fetal abnormalities

The Truth About Pregnancy Loss

Miscarriage is a tragic event that affects millions of women and their partners. At Undefining Motherhood, we want you to feel like you can openly talk about your loss and get to know other mothers who share similar experiences.

You are not alone!

My Blighted Ovum Story: What I Wish I’d Known to Expect

“At least there wasn’t really a baby.” I heard this phrase so often after my blighted ovum miscarriage (BO) that I actually stopped telling people what type of loss it... Read More

11 Types of Miscarriage & What You Need to Know About Them

Did you know that there are MANY types of miscarriage? In this article, we'll break them down using research and explain their respective symptoms. Knowing what kind you are having... Read More

Losing Yourself When You Lose a Child

This article is the third installment of a series by Michelle Valiukenas. This is one loss mom’s journey of finding her way after losing her daughter, Colette. You can find... Read More

Rainbow Baby Shower Ideas: Everything You Need to Know

While we often think of rainbows as fun ways to add colorful whimsy to a party, they can take on a much deeper significance when you’re talking to a pregnant... Read More

Personal Missed Miscarriage Stories From Women Who Have Been There

When people think about miscarriage (if they take the time to think about it at all), most imagine bleeding. But did you know it’s possible to lose a pregnancy and... Read More

Five Tips for Getting Through Grief During the Holidays

Grieving during the holidays is an especially gut-wrenching experience. It often leaves us feeling lonely in ways we never imagined, wondering how the rest of the world can celebrate while... Read More

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month 2020

October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, a month of remembrance that honors parents and families who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), and other types... Read More

International Wave of Light 2020: A Pregnancy & Infant Loss Remembrance Event

Every year around this time, as the seasons start to change and a chill tinges the air, I’m reminded of one of the most bittersweet events I attend all year:... Read More

How to Prevent a Miscarriage (Debunking the Myths!)

When our editor saw that we were publishing an article about preventing miscarriage, she was understandably confused. After all, I spend more waking hours than I can imagine counting reminding... Read More

National Rainbow Baby Day 2020: Celebrating the Rainbow After Your Storm

Pregnancy after miscarriage is something unparalleled in both its joy and its anxiety. Many rainbow baby parents celebrate the joy of a successful pregnancy after a previous loss, seeing their... Read More