What to do after a miscarriage
A miscarriage typically happens within the first trimester of the pregnancy and can be caused by different reasons. But what do you do when you lose a child you really wanted? How do you cope?
There are bound to be feelings of grief, anger, sadness and pain after you experience a miscarriage. Even though your doctor is there to provide immediate care after the loss, there is still a lot left to process emotionally. Apart from having a support system and allowing yourself to feel your grief, here are a few things to do after a miscarriage.
Visit the hospital
There are often telling signs of a miscarriage: heavy bleeding, cramping and abdominal pain. If your pregnancy is not up to 20 weeks old and you have these symptoms, it’s best to go to the hospital and consult with a doctor. If what you’re experiencing is a miscarriage, the doctor will use an ultrasound to determine if everything is okay with the foetus or not. If it isn’t, the doctor might advise that you wait for your body to naturally expel the pregnancy, prescribe medication or in some cases, a minor surgery called dilation and curettage or D&C.
During pregnancy, your body undergoes a lot of changes to accommodate the growth of the baby. After a miscarriage, your body will need time to adjust and get back to its usual routine, and this takes time. Additionally, you will most likely still experience some bleeding and cramping for weeks after the miscarriage. It’s best to rest, give your body time to adjust and listen to the instructions of the doctor on how to recover.
Avoid exercise and sex
This is a no-brainer. Avoid anything that penetrates the vagina like tampons. Use pads for the bleeding instead. Also, avoid strenuous activities like intercourse and exercise. This can cause complications that might affect your ability to conceive again.
Monitor your body
Complications can arise after a miscarriage, especially if the fetus and placental tissue are not fully expelled. You should immediately see your doctor if your bleeding soaks 1-2 pads within an hour or goes on for more than two weeks; you have severe pain, you’re running a temperature or notice signs of infection like smelly discharge etc.
Eat a balanced diet
Your diet will help in renewing your health and body. Eat food high in iron and Vitamin C because of all the blood loss.
It is also important that you do not blame yourself. Miscarriages happen and there is often nothing to do to stop it. Also remember to have a solid support system, because of the feelings of loss and grief. If possible, speak to a counsellor about all your feelings.
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