Tips for coping with the practicalities of miscarriage

(291 Posts)
comeonbishbosh Wed 16-Nov-11 10:58:13

I?ve just had mc2, which has been emotionally more upsetting than mc1, but I coped a heck of a lot better on the practical side of managing it. And I realise that through the pregnancy books are full of tips on what types of sweets to pack in your hospital bag for labour, we?re pretty short of simple tips to make the sheer yuckiness of going through a miscarriage a little more bearable. I know there?s going to be big variations in people?s experience, and this is in no way to overrule any medical advice you get. But at least it might be a starting point.

For info, I had mc1 8 months ago, didn?t realise I was pg at the time (just come off breastfeeding DD, had massive problems conceiving before) but was probably 8-12 weeks. Didn?t realise it was actually a mc until a lot of mess later. MC2 was a few days ago, had a bit more notice as knew I was 8 wk pregnant, had been increasingly bleeding, and knowing a bit more what it was like through mc1. Neither time I needed to go to hospital.

So, this is what I would suggest helps from my experience, all offered as suggestions that may or may not apply to your situation!

1. Once you realise the bleeding has started in earnest, get home as soon as you can. You will probably need to sit on the loo for the next 1-3 hours, and that?s far nicer to do in the comfort of your own home.

2. If you need to travel in a car, sit on a plastic bag. (My 1st mc started at work, and by the time my DH came and picked me up in the car I had bleeding all down my trousers... it?s not glamorous).

3. Cancel everything, get childcare if you need it. The first time in the midst of the bleeding I tried to keep going, a builder came round to give me a quote for some work, DH went out on a pre-arranged cinema trip and I was putting DD to bed on my own. However hard it is to get a builder to quote, this was stupid priorities! Also, I now know best not to be left without another adult within shouting distance.

4. Settle in for the long haul. My mc2 was overnight, and I essentially camped out in the bathroom with magazines, world service on the radio, short scurries downstairs to make a hot chocolate. It was still horrible. But not unremittingly so.

5. Hot water bottles or hot wheatbags are great. And painkillers.

6. Get top quality sanitary pads, supersize. The maternity ones might be good for the first few hours if you can?t just sit on the loo, but they will make you miserable with their ungainliness. This is not a time to economise on the cheap versions.

7. If your mc kicks off at an evening or weekend, I found phoning my GPs ?out of hours? service loads more helpful, straightforward and kind than I have ever found NHS direct.

8. If take a pg test when you are miscarrying, it should come out positive. This is useful if, like me on mc1, I didn?t know I was pg at the time.

9. Take more time off work than you think. You are very much allowed to mooch.

Please do add any more tips. It goes without saying that I hope you and I never need these (again)?

Bakingtins Wed 11-Dec-13 11:53:34

Bumping thread

CallingAllEngels Mon 30-Dec-13 08:43:50

Bumping for Swede

SwedeAway Tue 31-Dec-13 12:13:48

Thanks Engels. Had mc three days ago. So far not too bad in that I am just bleeding as if I was having my period. Still can't believe it really...

BeautifulSunshine12 Thu 02-Jan-14 10:18:49

I found this thread yesterday when I was in the middle of my first MC and it's been a massive help and comfort. I can't believe how little other practical information there is out there.
I had been spotting for over a week and had a scan at 11 weeks and been told the baby had stopped growing and was very unlikely to be viable. We were told to return for a rescan the week after but be prepared for the inevitable.
Although we knew what was coming I wasn't at all prepared, thank god for my very organised husband. I lost a lot of blood and clots quickly so ended up in a&e, think it has mostly passed now but waiting for another scan to check next week.
My tips to help out would be, if you have been told you're likely to miscarry be prepared. I wasn't and it was so frantic getting child care, getting his stuff together, getting me sorted with clothes and painkillers etc. the microwaveable wheatie was a godsend and really helped with the pain. Just try to relax and let nature take its course... If it's not meant to be it's not meant to be.
Thank you to everybody who's contributed to the post though as it really has been a massive help both yesterday and today as I collect my thoughts on what has happened

bakingtins Mon 06-Jan-14 21:49:47

bumping thread for mackT

HomeHypno Tue 07-Jan-14 11:24:11

I would add not to be scared of the miscarriage. I had a medical management for a miscarriage at 11+5 and was quite scared (but didn't want the surgery and the risk of Asherman's either) but it was actually quite easy. The nurses were lovely, I got co-codamol and morphine as soon as I asked and apart from having a tiring night going back and forth to the toilet to pass the clots it was fine. The misoprostol softens the neck of the womb so much you don't have the same trauma of yourbody having to force the clots through a closed cervix. I would happily recommend going that way, with the downside being that it doesn't always work and you will sometimes still need to have ERPC.

Elliecate80 Mon 13-Jan-14 11:36:51

Firstly, huge thank you to everyone on these threads.
I am currently (just been told this morning) going through a failed pregnancy at 5 weeks, you have all made me feel comforted that what I am feeling and going through is natural!

I called my gp last Friday to tell them I had started bleeding with small cramps, they advised the earliest I could get seen at the early pregnancy clinic was Tuesday, I couldn't wait that long to find out if I was losing my baby I had waited so long for, so I took myself offto a&e.

After 8 hours of hanging round the hospital, I had a scan and several blood tests and sent on my way, and told to return on Sunday for a follow up blood test to see if my hormone levels had risen or dropped.

No one prepared or informed me of what I actually then went through, I wish I had read this all on Friday! The pains were unbearable, the bleeding just would ease, I didn't know if I was coming or going, my DH was amazing and comforted me all night.
I returned to hospital on Sunday for my blood test, and for some reason I was still thinking ' you never know, I hear that some people do still have periods during pregnancy, maybe My baby will be ok'!!

I have just had to call to say my levels had dropped, and that I need to return again in 48 hours for another blood test to see if my pregnancy is fully ended!! I have cried and cried and cried, I can't even begin to describe how I am feeling.

I am staying positive that my baby wouldn't have been able to cope in this world and that I will be lucky enough to fall again one day.

I agree with everyone on things 'things to be prepared with'
Big pants
Big pads
Lots of toilet roll
Heat pads
Paracetamol
Plenty of lower back rubs from other half

I have a question, I am still bleeding and slight stomach cramps but not sure how much rest I should be having? How long did people take off work? I have taken today off but how long should I take to get over this?

Thanks again everyone, you have helped more than you know through this shitty time x

Ruggle Mon 13-Jan-14 13:13:41

Sorry for your loss Ellie.

I had a mmc at 11 weeks and took 2 weeks off but could have done with 3. I then had an mc at 5 weeks, which for me was like a very heavy period (compared to the first one which was appalling)....so physically I felt much better able to cope and took a Friday off, had the weekend to recover, and was back at work on the Monday. Emotionally it took longer to recover but work was a distraction.
If this is your first mc then even at 5 weeks it will have been a big shock, so as well as the physical recovery you should definitely take time off to recover emotionally, at least a little bit.

SOme good news is that I conceived two weeks after my second mc and am currently 9+4....so there's definitely hope!

TeaRex Mon 13-Jan-14 15:24:03

Hi Ellie, didn't want to read and not post, in the midst of a mmc at the moment so can't answer your questions really but just wanted to say I'm so sorry for what you're going through, I only posted on here a couple of days ago and the support has just been so amazing so im sure some ladies who are through the other side and ttc again will be along soon to offer advice, might even be worth starting your own thread as well? Not sure though as very new here. Ruggle, so lovely to hear positive news x

ItchyBodCrane Mon 20-Jan-14 17:35:31

Just wanted to thank everyone for posting here. I had my ERPC about 10 days ago and this thread gave me a lot of tips about what to expect.

I would echo whoever said about taking moist toilet tissue in (couldn't bring myself to buy baby wipes as it just seemed like rubbing salt into the wound!). After the op I got dressed in a cubicle and I guess they would have let me into the loo to clean up a bit if I had asked but it was nice just to get dressed and use the wipes to clean up.

The only bit of advice I can add is that, if it is possible, when having an early scan or follow up to confirm miscarriage as I did (even though it was obvious it was not viable) try to get the earliest appointment available as it will mean there will be less heaviliy pregnant women/tiny babies around whilst you are waiting. Both my appointments were before 9am and although I had to walk through the waiting room on the way out (in floods of tears), at least it spared me having to sit amongst them, especially before the second appointment when we knew it was over.

ItchyBodCrane Mon 20-Jan-14 17:39:37

Also I should add as I've seen it mentioned on another thread that even if you are bleeding they will still do the ERPC. You need to tell them you are bleeding so they can give you the most hideous surgical knickers and a huge pad that will not stick to said hideous knickers so you have to shimmy around with your legs kept together but unless you are actively miscarrying (and if you are the hideous knickers/non sticky pad just won't cut it) and not just bleeding then you can still have the op.

bakingtins Mon 17-Feb-14 07:25:25

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bakingtins Tue 25-Feb-14 19:25:58

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Babygirl18 Sun 02-Mar-14 13:04:39

I would love to say thank you guys so much for everything you have written down.. I knew I was going to miscarriage at 6 weeks when I went to check up but it's week 10-11 and it's just starting I woke up this morning at 6 am in terrible terrible pain! This happened the day before as well but once I took medicine it went away but when I took something today it did not help one bit. This is the worst pain ever. You guys have given me some ideas to help but I'm really concerned with the time off because I am a college student and have long busy days. Also woke up this morning with a terrible sore throat. I felt the need to just sit on the toilet while it was going on.. Are you suppose to go to the hospital once it starts happening

Babygirl18 Sun 02-Mar-14 13:08:19

I would love to say thank you guys so much for everything you have written down.. I knew I was going to miscarriage at 6 weeks when I went to check up but it's week 10-11 and it's just starting I woke up this morning at 6 am in terrible terrible pain! This happened the day before as well but once I took medicine it went away but when I took something today it did not help one bit. This is the worst pain ever. You guys have given me some ideas to help but I'm really concerned with the time off because I am a college student and have long busy days. Also woke up this morning with a terrible sore throat. I felt the need to just sit on the toilet while it was going on.. Are you suppose to go to the hospital once it starts happening

mrsnec Sun 02-Mar-14 13:26:41

Hi, I had a bad experience at the hospital and it didn't help my anxiety so I just felt I thought id be more comfy at home which i was. I was also scared after previous experience of a termination and abdominal surgery that scar tissue in there wouldn't help my chances of getting pg in the future. No idea where I got that from though.

andadietcoke Sun 02-Mar-14 13:30:51

babygirl18 I'm sorry for your loss. You're fine to stay at home as long as you feel well. Try to stay hydrated and take painkillers regularly. I curled up on the sofa with a hot water bottle and watched films (and cried, it's okay to cry, and to want to talk about it). Take care of yourself thanks

Babygirl18 Mon 03-Mar-14 06:10:19

My entire body aches and I have sore throat.. I feel discomfort and am worried about going to my classes this week.. Is it a bad idea to be doing so? Painkillers did not help today and I was very tempted to go to the hospital and I very very confused with everything and I do not know what to do since I am back at school and not home or with my bf... Any tips for anything

Aoifebelle Mon 03-Mar-14 07:19:47

babygirl the most important thing for you to do right now is rest and recover. Go back home, take a friend or get your bf to come over. Do it now.

It sounds like you have a cold/flu on top of the mc. If you have a thermometer take your temp. If there is any odd whiff from the discharge, go to a&e. If you soak through more than one maxi pad an hour for more than 3/4 hours, if the pain cannot be managed with otc meds, or if the back of your neck feels cold go to a&e.

If you do not rest now, you may end up taking more time off later.

Being good to yourself is the most important thing for you to do right now. You may need a few days to recover. Give yourself this time.

bakingtins Tue 18-Mar-14 09:21:30

Bump

vicki2122 Fri 21-Mar-14 08:18:59

Had 2mc and I'm still crying 4 weeks. Later why? Will it ever end sad

bakingtins Wed 02-Apr-14 15:19:01

Bumping for bristolian

marshmallowpies Wed 02-Apr-14 16:01:35

Is the sore throat thing common on top of other symptoms? I got a cough & sore throat last week, 1 week before MC symptoms began, and it hasn't gone away (we had builders in, so I've inhaled a lot of dust, now there's this smog cloud over the south-east).

I've taken nothing except paracetamol and honey/lemon & gargled with salt water to soothe my throat, been avoiding other medication while I thought I was still pregnant. As soon as I know it's definitely over I suppose I can take whatever I need?
TIA for any advice...

bakingtins Wed 02-Apr-14 17:58:38

I think it's probably a coincidence, there are a lot of nasty viruses around at the moment. Sorry to hear you have that to deal with on top of uncertainty about your pregnancy, it's the last thing you need. flowers

marshmallowpies Wed 02-Apr-14 18:35:47

Thank you baking, it's one of those hacking dry coughs which just won't go away; if I hadn't been pregnant I'd be on the night nurse days ago. Since the smog started I've also had a blocked nose so going to sit with a bowl of hot water & Vicks tonight.

I guess (as I read somewhere on the thread below) my immune system is shot to pieces so I have to be prepared for anything. I am 90% sure the pregnancy is ending so at least I feel a bit more ready to take what's coming now.

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