If you’re expecting or trying to get pregnant, it’s normal to worry about the chance of miscarriage because it can be tragic. However, there is a lot of false information out there concerning the main reasons for miscarriage, which might unduly increase your anxieties. A miscarriage, also known as a spontaneous abortion, happens when an embryo or fetus perishes before the 20th week of pregnancy. A stillbirth occurs after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

Miscarriages happen rather frequently: According to studies from Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, California, the miscarriage rate in the United States varies from 11 to 22 percent of pregnancies by week 20, with the biggest proportion happening by the 13th week. Because some women miscarry before they even realize they are pregnant—they may merely believe their period is late—the rate may be higher than that.

Emotional Effects of Miscarriage

If a miscarriage happens after a woman knows she’s pregnant, feelings of sadness and loss are bound to occur. “The minute a woman hears or realizes she’s pregnant, that’s a baby to her — she’s thinking about names and a nursery,” explains Alice Domar, PhD, the chief psychologist at Boston IVF at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and the author of Finding Calm for the Expectant Mom. “So if there’s a miscarriage at any point, there’s a potential for it to be perceived as a death, and the grieving process can be intense.”

Why Miscarriages and Pregnancy Loss Happens

Most of the time, it’s challenging to pinpoint the precise cause of a single miscarriage. According to Mary Ellen Pavone, MD, an associate professor of obstetrics and gynecology in the division of reproductive endocrinology and infertility at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, chromosomally defective pregnancies are the most typical cause of losses. 

Researchers examined the “products of conception” (also known as the tissue derived from the placenta or fetus) in 1,000 first-trimester miscarriages and discovered that 50% of them had chromosomal abnormalities in a study published in the February 2018 issue of the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics.

Basic Facts About Pregnancy And Miscarriage

The structures that house genes in each cell’s nucleus are called chromosomes. Each human cell typically houses 23 pairs of chromosomes. The two sets of chromosomes combine during fertilization, which occurs when an egg and sperm combine (for a total of 46 chromosomes). According to Dr. Pavone, a fertilized egg with an aberrant number of chromosomes, or ones that are duplicated, missing, or incomplete, “may create complications with implantation or early miscarriage.”

In some situations, uterine abnormalities in the mother, such as fibroids or structural issues, might result in miscarriage. 

The risk may rise in certain medical disorders such uncontrolled diabetes, hypothyroidism, or celiac disease. Additionally, when a person has antiphospholipid syndrome, a condition that primarily affects women, their immune system makes it much simpler for blood clots to form. According to Pavone, these clots might develop in the placenta and result in miscarriage. 

Fortunately, some of these disorders are curable with medicine or corrective surgery, allowing for successful full-term pregnancies in the future.

Age-Related Risks for Miscarriage and the Biological Clock Factor

Age is another frequent risk element for women. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) states that a woman’s risk of miscarriage rises as she ages and that after the age of 40, more than a third of pregnancies end in miscarriage.

Miscarriage Risk Factors That Can Be Reduced

Meanwhile, you have some influence over some risk factors: 

According to Pavone, smoking raises the chance of miscarriage because it “interferes with blood and oxygen supply to the fetus.” She adds that exposure to other harmful environmental elements, including as lead, certain pesticides, solvents, or arsenic, may raise the risk of miscarriage. Having an unplanned pregnancy is more likely if you are underweight, fat, or overweight.

Vitamin B and D deficiencies, for example, can raise a woman’s chance of miscarriage. Caffeine in moderation is safe, but a high intake of more than 300 milligrams per day may be harmful, according to Pavone. Additionally, some STDs, like chlamydia and gonorrhea, might be troublesome if they result in fallopian tube scarring.

Signs and Symptoms of Miscarriage and Early Pregnancy Loss

Bleeding and cramping are the most typical signs of a miscarriage. But keep in mind that light bleeding (or spotting) and mild discomfort in the early stages of pregnancy are typically not cause for concern; frequently, they resolve on their own and the pregnancy progresses properly. To be on the safe side, however, if you encounter these symptoms, particularly if cramping is extreme or bleeding is excessive, consult your ob-gyn or healthcare professional.

We hope you found this piece very informative. You can book a consultation with us today for more. We will be glad to help as we are here to partner with you on your journey to parenthood. 

Omega Golden Fertility is a specialized, premium, and assisted conception center in Nigeria. At Omega, the best of science, technology, and the highest ethical practices are combined to deliver real value to our numerous clients. We consider ourselves as the last frontier in the assisted reproduction industry. With state of art facilities, highly trained specialists, and a culture of excellence, omega is poised to bring her clients a lasting smile. Wouldn’t you rather talk to us? Help is just a click away.

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