Ask The Expert
February 22, 2011
Loss of an early pregnancy is a common and often difficult experience. About 10% of recognized pregnancies end in miscarriage. The actual rate is higher because many losses happen before a woman is aware she is pregnant. Miscarriage is more common in older women, smokers, following trauma, and in women with a history of prior miscarriage. However, most occur in woman with no known risk factors. There are no treatments to prevent miscarriage.
After a miscarriage, you should not have intercourse, use tampons, or place anything in the vagina for two weeks. The cervix may have opened to pass the uterine contents. It will need this time to close in order to prevent pelvic infection.
Women are often told to wait two or three months before trying to become pregnant after a miscarriage. However, there are no known risks to a pregnancy conceived even 1 month after a miscarriage. If you want to wait, you may resume any form of birth control right away.
The emotional reactions women have after a miscarriage will vary. It is not unusual or abnormal to experience significant grief. Taking time to work through your emotions may be one reason to wait a while before trying again to become pregnant. Women should seek support and assistance as needed from their health care providers as well as family and friends.