Tips for coping with the practicalities of miscarriage

(707 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

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)?

HK1234 Sun 19-Feb-17 00:29:19

Just wanted to thank you all for sharing your experiences and add mine for what it's worth. I had my MC this week at 10 weeks (on Valentine's Day) after spotting last weekend turned to bleeding. It was my first pregnancy.

In comparison to some I've had a relatively easy ride- the actual MC was painful and all the bleeding looked like a horror movie (sorry if TMI!) but fortunately it seems as though my body has dealt with it on its own, I was able to stay at home, the bleeding is now tapering off and HcG levels are going down.

I took last week off work as the physical symptoms meant I couldn't be in. Had also taken 2 days the week before with the worst migraine I had ever had, which I now know was the first sign of the MC as I tend to get pre menstrual migraines. Things are crazy at work right now and I need to go back on Monday but I'm dreading it. My boss knows what has happened but I don't know what to tell everyone else about why I've been off- I'm sure they would mean well but I don't think they'd understand and it's a very gossipy place. I also need some flexibility from the heads of the teams I work with but it's tricky as I don't feel that comfortable telling them but I also don't want people to think I was off for a non legitimate reason or that I've been slacking. I think if I could choose I'd take another week as I've been very emotional but I guess I need to try and be distracted. I also have a history of anxiety and depression but am still trying to wean off my antidepressants and am scared about having a big relapse. How did you cope going back to work/life?

I'm very up and down at the moment and feel a bit clearer headed sometimes and then descend into darkness and uncontrollable crying the next. The world feels very bleak at my low points and I feel so empty and stuck in this bad place. I desperately miss someone I never got to meet. I want to feel better and feel bad if I wallow but it's very hard.

In terms of some suggested ways to help, I have started to see a fertility acupuncturist - if nothing else, it helps to talk to someone who understands, work to improve my diet and lifestyle plus the acupuncture relaxes me. I'm terrified to ttc again at the moment in case this happens again but I know I will want to. I also have a large subserosal fibroid and polycystic ovaries without the syndrome (other than crazy long cycles sometimes) so I want to get my body in balance for when we are ready. Other than that, as we moved house a couple of months ago I'm going to throw myself into decorating and once that's done we are going to stop putting off our plan to get a puppy- certainly not as a replacement for the baby but we had intended to get one this Spring anyway before I found out I was pg. Whilst this is such a horrible time, it has put things into perspective and it feels like life is precious and we just have to go for what we want and find little bits of happiness and joy where we can.

Sorry for the essay. All the best to all of you flowers

Leesyloo2017 Sun 12-Feb-17 00:00:32

I had a natural and complete miscarriage at home in the night almost a week ago and I thought I would share some of my thought/ tips which might offer an insight to others. I was a few days from my first 12 week scan.

1. I was shocked I lost SO much blood in the first few days - it was way more than any period I had ever experienced. Drink lots of water to keep your fluids up the days afterwards and I found it helped to take every movement that bit slower. I was told by the hospital that if you're having to change a sanitary towel once every half hour then it is time to go to hospital. Also, if you feel faint and dizzy then it is important to go to hospital.

I was also advised it would be a good idea to take iron supplement tablets (as well as usual folic acid) to help get my iron levels up and replenish my body.

2. The silence. I had never experienced anything like this before and i had no idea how I would emotionally process the information. I have tried to remain open to my emotions and be kind and gentle with myself. To begin I can only describe that I felt and could hear a deep silence, as if it spanned for miles and miles. The background sound of chitter chatter in my mind had been switched off - instantly. A week on I can only just hear the silence when I am walking on my own and I feel I have connected to nature again and can hear the birds sing and see the spring flowers start to come up. I think this is because my miscarriage was 'natures way' so maybe I am looking to see nature in the everyday.

3. A Mum hug or hug from your bestie. I cried and laughed, cried and laughed and squeezed those close to me tight. Every time I cried, I felt lighter. I didnt feel guilty laughing and smiling at the irony and theatre of life. I laughed that I spent my 20s terrified I might get pregnant when in reality there are only a few days where the risk is fearfully high and here I am in my 30s having miscarried. For me, it helped to laugh and also, to treat myself to a gin and tonic (I'd missed those).

I also sometimes feel as if I am living a double life as I've chosen not to tell anyone at work. I dont want to risk being treated differently and people feeling awkward but it is tiring to carry the weight of the grief around with me. If only it had all just been a 'tummy bug'...

4. Keep talking. I talk to my hubby about how we're feeling every day, sometimes over dinner and sometimes as I have a cry in bed at night or first thing in the morning. Oddly, the miscarriage itself felt quite lonely - being stuck on the loo for hours, sitting, waiting, wondering when your body will do what it needs to do. For me, it has been important to share my feelings as there could be a tendency to emotionally cut myself off.

My body is recovering very quickly and I feel as if I am my pre-pregnant self. On the one hand I'm thankful to my body, its been through a lot, but on the other hand I am saddened that all my pregnancy symptoms are gone. The recovery of my body has been one step ahead of my emotions but the two are coming back together again. They'll shake hands, reaquaint, say hello to one another again. Slowly we'll move forwards together - I'm going to need these two when I'm pregnant. I ain't giving up yet.

Good luck to you all xx

Sojii Thu 09-Feb-17 11:32:12

So sorry Lrscott, you must be feeling terrible. I've had three mc twice on my own one at hospital (Mmc) Twice it started with spotting and didn't start properly for a while. Last time I was a work and had plenty of time to get home. I would think you will have a little warning or cramps and spotting a little bit like a normal period first .so you don't have to stay home but wear some night strength pads. If you can wangle time off work somehow I would recommend it. I found this thread so helpful. My top tips would be a box set of something to watch, box of chocolates/biscuits and hot water bottle. Get the best pads you can, loads of them. I wore two pairs of pants and two sets of pads just to be sure. Towels on the bed. And loads of cuddles from whoever is offering to bring you tea and keep their mouth shut. My DH handed me the cat and backed slowly away. Just what I needed. Good luck Xxx

Lrscott Thu 09-Feb-17 08:41:47

Hi ladies, I'm sorry for all your losses. I had a scan at my local EPU yesterday at 7+2. I had a gestational sac measuring about 7+5 but no foetal pole or yolk. I'm devastated but not surprised as my symptoms have tailed off over the last week or so. I took the day off work yesterday to process. I do a 45minute commute by car and today I'm too frightened to go into work incase I begin my miscarriage there. I don't know if I'm being unreasonable or not. I've read all you comments and found them very helpful especially for when it begins - but what about the wait? I'm too scared to leave the house. Can anyone give me advice?

MochaChocaChino Sun 22-Jan-17 18:07:01

Hope you're ok LargeMelons? Such a horribly difficult time.

Thank you once again to everyone who has posted on the thread I've read it all the way through numerous times.

I didn't think I'd make the surgical procedure I had booked for Tues, and it seems I was right as I naturally miscarried this afternoon. Still bleeding heavily but the cramps have subsided. Will call the EPU in the morning to understand what happens next (if anything).

In terms of practical support you've all been amazing and spot on - lots of pads, painkillers, choc, baby wipes and a full phone battery got me through...

Sending love to you all, and take care of yourself LargeMelons xxx flowers

Largemelons Sat 21-Jan-17 19:18:31

Thank you for this thread.
I had a very shocking dating scan which showed a mmc. I had slight bleeding at 5 weeks but a private scan at 8.5 weeks was perfect and I've had no bleeding since.
My symptoms are still full on too, the baby was measuring 9-10 weeks with no hb.
So I'm still feeling totally pregnant, awful and waiting until Tuesday for the ERPC.
This will be my fourth mc (not in a row thankfully) but by far the worst as the others were all around the 5 week mark and felt like a heavy period.

It's just awful and I feel in absolute limbo.
This thread has made me feel less alone.

Nixie8 Fri 20-Jan-17 23:24:42

Hi Mochachocachino,
First off let me say how sorry i am for your loss, it really is such a horrible thing to have to go through and so confusing. Make sure you lean on those around you and take lots of care. Plenty of pain killers and pads. Lots of water as u may be dehydrated.
Thinking of u

MochaChocaChino Fri 20-Jan-17 21:56:54

Thank you so much for this thread.

Discovered today at 12w I've had an mmc. Trying to get my head around things and think practically so this thread has been amazingly helpful. I'm booked for surgery on Tues but don't think I'll make it as already bleeding and just started getting cramps. Preparing for what the weekend will bring 😔

So sorry to all of you who've also been through this xxx

1oneout Mon 16-Jan-17 10:03:00

God bless you for this thread. I had a mc yesterday night. Alone at home and without a clue what to do. You literally saved me! It has been as horrible has everybody describe. My personal thing to add is that I was sweating a lot over night so I have changed pijis 2 times.

Thanks again and a big hug to all the lovely ladies that had the misfortune to read this.

BWatchWatcher Thu 29-Dec-16 10:29:31

Bumping this

whyistherumgone Wed 21-Dec-16 10:26:07

thanks Nixie that's really helpful.

Nixie8 Tue 20-Dec-16 10:32:52

Let me start by saying I am really sorry you are going through this, it's horrible and I don't think people really understand. I was in a similar position to you and opted for medical management; I passed lots of quite big chunks (sorry for tmi) unlike when I had my natural miscarriage and it all came out in a big wish but the thing I have learned is everybody is different. Give yourself time and lean on those around you, they will want to help. Take care

whyistherumgone Tue 20-Dec-16 08:12:14

Hello, this is such an incredibly incredibly helpful thread. I suspect I am going to need it - measuring 6 weeks instead of 9. Got to go back for a scan but think it will just be confirming bad news.

My question is, and I'm really sorry if already been answered, if it stopped at 6 weeks would that be like a 6 week MC rather than a 9 week? I'm weighing up my options and am wondering how much "matter" sad I am likely to pass at this stage. By the time I go back for my scan I would have been ten weeks + 1.

I've read through half of the thread and will read the rest when I get home - so so sad to see that it's so many pages, although the information is helpful it's awful to see so many of you have had to go through it.

Nixie8 Sun 20-Nov-16 10:49:05

Oh Louise, I'm sorry to hear your news and sorry for your loss. It just feels like this is something people never mention but then when you do talk about it so many have been affected. Give yourself time and make sure you talk to people around you. Take big care

81louise Sat 19-Nov-16 23:11:55

Feel the need to add my experience. This is my first pregnancy.
I had a bit of a sqwiffy period at the beginning of the month, continuing to have a brown to red discharge for two weeks. Did a pregnancy test at the end of last week which was positive, went to the doctors who referred to the EPU.

We had tests on Tuesday along with an internal exam which showed nothing there, but bloods came back at around 700, we were around 4 and a half weeks, which matched our dates. Thursday's bloods came back at 200, so we knew it wasn't viable.

However, I am disappointed that no one mentioned any of what has been mentioned on the thread, that this would happen, or was to be expected and planned for. I have just started a new job, so I was trying to keep it quiet whatever happened, but had I have known this was to happen I would have told them ( I went to work on Friday) so that they knew I may not be able to make it.

Just started bleeding heavily and had to quickly nip to the shops for supplies before they close at 10.

ColdCottage Wed 09-Nov-16 21:37:22

I was very anxious about what would happen in medical management but I feel I had the easiest experience I could have possibly had physically.
Tablets went in at 2pm (along with suppository pain relief) period pain like cramps started about 8.30/9pm so took paracetamol and got in the bath.
Bleeding started about 10pm in the bath so got out and was all over by midnight. No more bleeding over night or since apart from very tail end of period marks.
The reason for my post is just prepare for the worst (for me that was pain killers, tens machine, hot water bottle and comfort food plus other advice on here) and hopefully you will find its not too bad.
I'm sorry for everyone going through this. This thread really helped me see a real world reality of MC and MMC which helped me in tandem with the official support via NHS leaflets.

ColdCottage Wed 09-Nov-16 21:36:27

I was very anxious about what would happen in medical management but I feel I had the easiest experience I could have possibly had physically.
Tablets went in at 2pm (along with suppository pain relief) period pain like cramps started about 8.30/9pm so took paracetamol and got in the bath.
Bleeding started about 10pm in the bath so got out and was all over by midnight. No more bleeding over night or since apart from very tail end of period marks.
The reason for my post is just prepare for the worst (for me that was pain killers, tens machine, hot water bottle and comfort food plus other advice on here) and hopefully you will find its not too bad.
I'm sorry for everyone going through this. This thread really helped me see a real world reality of MC and MMC which helped me in tandem with the official support via NHS leaflets.

ColdCottage Sat 05-Nov-16 11:42:22

I'm in Oxfordshire, believe they give you all 4 in one go. Then you go home.

NannyGR Thu 03-Nov-16 14:16:20

Sorry your feeling discomfort littletike
So the gp referred me and I went for a scan today... but they sonographer and nurses still can't give me a straight answer... there was a small sack but would only look like 5-6 weeks so no heartbeat could be round. Their not sure if this is part of the miscarriage or whether it's a new pregnancy, whether my dates were just wrong!! God knows.... got to go back for a scan in 10 days to see what's happened.... just so confusing! I'm sure my dates can't be wrong, and I've been having positive tests for 5 weeks now too!!
So I really don't know what to say/do/think, guess I'll just have to wait until my next scan!!

littletike Thu 03-Nov-16 13:26:09

nanny that's not good at all! How did you get on with the gp?

coldcottage where are you at now? my hospital seems to be a bit of an anomaly as they give 2 tablets and if they haven't worked in 48 hours then give the second dose and wait a further 48 hours.

My stomach feels weird and I'm going to start another thread about it I think... it could be unrelated but the discomfort is starting to worry me - it's like my insides feel bruised/tender when I sit down too hard or bend over and it feels similar to being pregnant in terms of pressure... the scan confirmed miscarriage was complete so not sure what's going on.

ColdCottage Wed 02-Nov-16 20:31:56

Thank you Moringa1, I was told that they give it a week to see if the tablets work and then review. If it doesn't work then I'd need to go for surgical management.
Although my logical brain told me that the surgical option was best for me as I could plan it around childcare and hopefully it would then be over but when I booked it my gut told me it wasn't for me so after chatting to my husband I decided to continue to wait for it to happen naturally until last week after my 2 week follow up chat. Just had enough of not feeling myself, being sick occasionally still and not knowing what will be happening next.

NannyGR Wed 02-Nov-16 12:01:36

Hi littletike
There is an early pregnancy unit near me but last time I spoke to them they said they wouldn't see me without a referral from gp or unless I'd be bleeding for more than 3 weeks!! Fingers crossed the gp will refer me tomorrow!!
I hope you start feeling normally again soon!! I just want all this to be over now...

littletike Wed 02-Nov-16 09:19:57

Nanny is there an early pregnancy clinic near you? If so it might be worth giving them a ring to see if you can self refer or something as it seems ridiculous to me that you haven't been scanned.

I'm a week on from bleeding stopping and 2 weeks from miscarriage starting. I've been ok but I think there must be something going on as the last two days I've been really uncomfortable and feeling hormonal again. I just want to feel normal again physically and emotionally. I'm still off work for another week and yesterday I thought I'd be ok but today I'm not sure.

NannyGR Wed 02-Nov-16 08:18:24

I hope you don't mind me sharing my story!! My head is so frazzled atm and I'm finding it hard to digest!

Found I was pregnant on 28th September... absolute miracle after 4 long years of ttc and the doctors giving up hope and saying I have unexplained infertility... then a month later on fell pregnant.

I am now on day 14 of bleeding... suspected miscarriage, but the doctor still hasn't sent me for a scan. Saw my lovely nurse on Friday whose been with me the whole way through this who decided she would do my bloods to try and get and indication on what's going on, got my results back yesterday and my Hgc levels were 1000... so not high enough considering I should be 12 weeks now. So has referred me to see the gp on Thursday and hopefully she will send me for a scan. I still have my first scan booked for Monday!
She seems to think I haven't passed enough blood to complete the miscarriage. I have been bleeding for 2 weeks, only had to wear a pad for 4 days and still not much blood then, only really there when I wipe and barely any clots (I've had 2 the size of a 5p)
My nurses thoughts are thay I might need a small procedure to help pass the rest! I'm dreading this... I've struggled to have time off work, I'm a nanny and my boss has a really important job and relies on me greatly! I had 2 days off when I found out I was miscarring. They've told me to try and take it easy but that's hard when I have two 1yr olds to chase about!

I just hate all this waiting around.... I really want this all to be over so I can start to think about trying again!

Sorry for the long post.

Love and hugs to everyone else who has had to go through this horrible experience!! flowers

Nixie8 Wed 02-Nov-16 05:59:58

Hi Moringa.
I am sorry about all of this , it really is such a horrible time. I had medical management 3weeks ago and the hospital asked me to do a pregnancy test this week, if there was any feint line then I would have had to return for d n c but thankfully all clear. When I had mine it was 4 weeks from when they said baby had stopped growing. It was quite painful and I would definitely recommend having someone there with you. Also, it's quite an emotional rollercoaster so take at least a week off.
I really am sorry for your loss.
Take care x

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