Miscarriage self-help

Many things can go wrong in early pregnancy. About 1 in 5 pregnancies ends in a miscarriage. In a lot of cases the baby wasn’t developing normally and very often it is nature’s way of ending a pregnancy which wouldn’t have carried on.

Most of the time we don’t know what causes a miscarriage and there is nothing you could have done to prevent this from happening.  This may have been a complete shock to you especially if you did not have any signs that anything was wrong.

It can be an extremely difficult and emotional time for you and your family and can result in a wide range of feelings that usually come in stages.

Shock and denial: feelings of numbness and disbelief are common

Anger; you may be angry with yourself, your partner or the doctors. You may find yourself angry with friends, relatives, or co-workers for little things that usually don’t upset you.

Guilt: you may feel you did something to cause the miscarriage.  If you took medicine, alcohol, smoke or over exerted yourself- perhaps before you knew you were pregnant. You might blame yourself for the miscarriage.  If you had mixed feelings about being pregnant you may feel ashamed of the relief you feel along with your sadness.

Lack of control: you might feel powerless or out of control.  You may keep thinking What if?  Or Why?

Acceptance: coming to terms with the loss you feel is a painful but very important step. This will allow you to heal and build hope for the future.



Self-care after a miscarriage

  • Give yourself a chance to heal both physically and emotionally. Get lots of rest especially in the first 24-48 hours.
  • You may have bleeding for the first few days. Always use sanitary pads (not tampons) and change them regularly. The bleeding may be heavy initially but should settle down.  If you start to lose blood clots or soaking through pads (3 in an hour) and start to feel faint or dizzy please seek medical assistance.  If at any time the blood-loss is smelly and you feel hot, like you have a temperature, please contact your GP.
  • Take simple analgesia for pain relief/cramps. Paracetamol and Ibuprofen are effective. You may find a hot water bottle or microwaveable heat pack can help. If the pain is severe and not settled by analgesia please contact your GP
  • Avoid sex for at least 2 weeks or until bleeding has settled. This is to prevent infection. It’s a good idea to use condoms then, until your next period has come, even though you may want to try for another baby soon.

Take care of yourself: give yourself permission to grieve. Take time to relax and eat well balanced meals

Ask for what you need – talk to your partner/friends/relatives

Some kind of ritual may comfort you in your loss: Light a candle at a certain time each day: a small personal memorial can help you and others to express the grief you feel. The miscarriage association also offers suggestions that you may like to use to mark your loss.

Marking your loss

Talk to your health care professional.  There are lots of support groups and help available if you feel you need more support.



Support groups:

Lily Mae Foundation – info@lilymaefoundation.org

The Lily Mae Foundation supports Parents and Families who have tragically and traumatically lost a baby to Stillbirth, Neonatal Death or Medical Termination

Baby loss support group: every 3rd Tuesday of the month at Balsall Common BCH 730-930 pm, please call 01676 535716 for details.


Edwards Trust – www.edwardstrust.org

Supporting children and families facing loss and surviving bereavement across the West Midlands. 3 Vicarage Road, Birmingham, B15 3ES


The pinksNblues – www.thepinksNblues.co.uk

We know that pregnancy loss can be a time of confusion, isolation, what if? what next?
At the Pinks N Blues we offer peer support groups, limited 1-2-1 support via email, telephone, Skype, and/or face to face, for anyone who has experienced pregnancy loss(es) and their partners, friends and family, pre-24 weeks.


Other Websites that may be helpful include:

The miscarriage association