The first few days
In the first few days after losing your baby you will have to cope with a mixture of emotions. Some women experience immense grief whilst others suffer from shock and denial and experience very little emotion at all.As well as this your body will still be coping with the physical aspects of losing a baby.
There will also be some practical things that you may need to take care. For example, considering if you should have a post-mortem performed on your baby, organising the funeral or you may need help understanding the pathology report on your placenta. It’s important to know that there are people who can support and advise you through all of this so please do not go through this alone.
Most women, will agree that the emotional pain is infinitely more difficult to bear than the physical discomfort. Remember that your hormone levels are rapidly changing after the birth, and mood swings and tears are normal after any delivery. Nature can be cruel and your breasts can fill with milk. Milk production can be suppressed by medication but many women decide not to take this. Breast engorgement can be painful, ask your midwife for advice.
The first few weeks
It is important to try and look after yourself physically after the miscarriage. You may not feel like eating or drinking but you need to do so. It is important to get your physical health back to normal, you will be able to cope with the emotional aspects better if you are physically stronger. Try to get a bit of exercise, perhaps a walk in the fresh air. Many women find it difficult to leave the house but if you can you will probably feel better.
The longer term
After any bereavement, loss of appetite and weight loss is not unusual, however, if it is excessive do talk to your GP. It may take you longer to recover from the miscarriage than would be expected. You may be prone to viral infections such as colds. You may feel physically exhausted. Sleep may be difficult for a while.
Often parents are frightened by the intensity of their physical experiences – you may feel, hear or see something you cannot explain. Talking things through with someone who has lost a baby themselves can be helpful – making you feel less isolated.
Finally, it is not an unusual phenomenon for bereaved parents, particularly mothers, to become obsessed with their own, their partner’s or their other children’s health. Every symptom becomes blown out of all proportion. This reaction usually fades with time – if it does not, talk to your doctor.
Find out more about accessing help here.
If you need support, please don't suffer alone. We have details of organisations who can help.
You and your partner have both experienced a miscarriage but you may react to it very differently. Everyone has their own way of grieving and it helps to accept and respect those differences.
You might be eager to try again, or not quite ready to think about the future – here are some things to consider when planning your next pregnancy.
When a loved one, or friend, has a miscarriage it can be difficult to know how to help and what to say.
ℹLast reviewed on August 1st, 2016. Next review date August 1st, 2019.