To a woman pregnant with a much wanted baby, miscarriage is something to be feared. Most miscarriages occur within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy and so the first trimester holds a rollercoaster of emotions for pregnant women, especially those who have experienced a miscarriage in the past.
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There are many reasons why miscarriage happens: these include an incompetent cervix, having an incompatible blood type with their partner, malformed uterus, hormonal deficiency, placenta problems, and even diabetes. Then, more often then not, it's just "one of those things". There is no explanation given because the doctors just don't know - especially in the early weeks. Later on in pregnancy, when the miscarriage occurs in the 2nd or 3rd trimester, then it is more likely to be one of the known causes listed above.
Miscarriage almost always starts with vaginal bleeding which should be reported immediately to the woman's medical provider. Sometimes there is also a pain in the abdomen. The bleeding doesn't always mean that a miscarriage will occur however, it may only be a threatened miscarriage in which case the doctor will advise the woman how to take care of herself to prevent further concern. If the baby is lost, then it is possible that the miscarriage will take care of everything, but sometimes a D&C (dilatation and curettage) procedure is needed to ensure that the uterus has been completely cleared and nothing remains that could create problems for any subsequent pregnancies.
To the medical profession, a miscarriage is little more than the body expelling an unhealthy fetus. This is an opinion often shared by the friends and family of the woman who had the miscarriage - unless of course, they have experienced a miscarriage themselves.
A miscarriage is more than a physical loss of cells. It's one that touches the emotional core of the woman who sees the abrupt end of her baby dream - an end she was powerless to stop. Despite all the medical reasoning, the woman usually has a deep seated belief that she failed to protect her baby, that if she had done something differently, the pregnancy would have survived. It takes time to accept this loss, and move on.
Each woman will come to terms with her loss in her own way. One of the worst things that usually occurs is that other people prefer to ignore the situation, afraid to deal with the raw emotion and unable to find the right words to say. Friends can help a woman who has experienced a miscarriage by giving her the opportunity to talk about how she feels about it, not ignoring that this traumatic event has happened, and reassuring her that this was not her fault. If you know someone who has had a miscarriage, acknowledge the loss of their baby, and allow them to grieve as they would a child which had been born.
If you have had a miscarriage yourself, don't think that this means you will never have a baby. There are many women who have stood in your shoes, and are now mothers with one or more children running around their feet. Give yourself time to heal mentally and physically, and then begin the process again, you probably won't ever forget this baby that was lost to you, but you will find that once you accept the situation and deal with the emotions, you will be able to move on and try to conceive once more.