Miscarriage is one of the saddest things that a woman who really wants to be a mom could go through. Many women have experienced this, or if they haven't, then they know a friend or family member who has. It can be hard to know what to say, and sometimes just being there for the other person is the best thing to do.
What causes a miscarriage? Unfortunately, there are a lot of things that people believe that just aren't the case at all. Here are 10 myths about the causes of miscarriages (that no one should believe). It's definitely time to stop thinking that these are true and to be acquainted with the truth.
10. A Rare Story
Are miscarriages rare? This is something that many of us believe, but it's not actually true. So if anyone is thinking that they had a miscarriage because it's a rare occurrence that happens, that's unfortunately not the case.
As Reader's Digest says, "On the contrary, miscarriage is a sadly common occurrence." According to The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), 10% of women suffer miscarriages, but the percentage is most likely higher considering that percentile is only for "known pregnancies."
It's sad to hear that miscarriages are so common since it means that so many women have struggled with this, but it's important for women to know they aren't alone.
9. All About Stress
Stress is often discussed as a really bad thing that can cause all kinds of health problems. We know that it's not good for us to be so worried about things on a daily basis. So could stress be one of the causes of miscarriage?
According to Ava Women, many women think this, but it's not the case.
As the website says, "Despite the fact that miscarriages are common and the majority of them are the result of chromosomal abnormalities, nearly 70 percent of women who’ve had a miscarriage believe that 'stress' caused them to lose the pregnancy, and more than a quarter (27%) of them believe they 'may have done something to cause it.'" On the contrary, it's been proven time and time again that stress is typically not a factor.
8. Lifting Too Much
Ava Women also talks about another popular myth surrounding miscarriages: lifting things that are too heavy.
As they put it smartly and succinctly, "While it’s been proven, consistently, for decades now that miscarriages are not caused by day-to-day stress, intense exercise, lifting heavy objects or even a history of abortion, these are all common miscarriage myths women still believe about how they may have somehow contributed to the loss of a pregnancy."
It's nice to hear that if pregnant moms are moving some furniture around the nursery, or even lifting a few bags from the grocery store, that this is not a cause of a miscarriage.
7. Future Pregnancies
You're not actually infertile if you have a miscarriage. This is something that many women think is definitely true, but it's not. It seems that infertility can't be the cause of a miscarriage, either.
As Dr. Ruth Lathi, who is a professor of gynecology and obstetrics at the Stanford University School of Medicine, said in an interview with Live Science, "We have the benefit of seeing a lot of women through this diagnosis to the other side." She continued that any "underlying health causes of miscarriage" would be blood-clotting disorders, fibroids, or thyroid problems, and these can be solved.
6. Birth Control
Can birth control be a cause of miscarriage? Nope. As it turns out, it can't at all.
Self.com said that "women who have had prolonged use of contraceptives should be reassured that they have no delay in the resumption of ovulation and are at no increased risk of miscarriage."
It makes sense that we would think about the things we do on a regular basis (or in this case, the pills that we take daily), and wonder if that could have something to do with it; but it's comforting to hear that this isn't a cause.
5. Placing Blame
Often, when a woman has a miscarriage, she will put blame on herself and think that she's the reason for the miscarriage. It's not only heartbreaking to hear this, but it's also just not true. Women are so hard on themselves.
According to Dr. Zev Williams who was interviewed by Science Line, "Instead, 60 percent of miscarriages happen because of genetic issues or chromosomal abnormalities." Furthermore, Dr. Williams suggests "additional contributors to miscarriage are malformed fetuses, uterus abnormalities, hormone disorders, autoimmune disorders, and blood clotting disorders."
Of course, if those things do occur, there should be no blame placed on anyone. The body does mysterious things.
4. Breaking A Sweat
Working out is a part of many people's daily lives. It's great for relieving stress and overall mental clarity. Does it play a part in a miscarriage, though?
The idea that working out can lead to a miscarriage is another myth.
Reader's Digest put this myth to rest and mentioned that "light" exercise or being aware of how to change the workout slightly if expecting a baby is the best thing to do. But that's not because the workouts will cause a miscarriage — those are just what experts and doctors recommend when a woman is pregnant.
As the publication notes, Dr. Robert Atlas, MD, ob-gyn, chair of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore suggests taking brisk walks and talking to their pediatrician if they want to change up their workouts.
3. The Flu Shot
Flu shots are often up for debate; people have all kinds of opinions about this sensitive subject. There are some topics that many agree are just not safe to talk about, and this is definitely one of them. No one wants to upset a new—or expecting—mom, so talking about flu shots and vaccinations should be on the back-burner.
If a mom does get a flu shot, though, can the shot cause a miscarriage? No, as Self.com reported, it can't. On the contrary, the site explains, "With the support of a large body of literature, they found the flu vaccine (at any point in pregnancy) to be a safe and effective way to reduce maternal morbidity and mortality, and to protect the fetus in-utero and after birth without risk of pregnancy loss."
2. Starting A Family
If a woman attempts to get pregnant again after having a miscarriage, does that mean that she will have another miscarriage?
According to Very Well Family, one miscarriage can't lead to another; "There's always a risk of miscarriage in any pregnancy, but there's no real evidence that you need to wait any set period of time after a first-trimester miscarriage before you try again. In the past, it was often recommended that people wait a few months before trying again."
The reason why so many mamas take some time before trying again is to clear their headspace and become centered again.
1. Coming Down With A Cold
The final miscarriage myth that we shouldn't believe is that coming down with a cold during the first trimester is going to cause a miscarriage. It can be stressful to experience that first trimester and wonder if anything is going to go wrong, but a cold isn't going to cause a miscarriage.
As Parents says, "A garden-variety cold, a sinus infection, or even a stomach virus isn't likely to affect your pregnancy." The only thing that could is if you have a super high fever (over 102 F). So have no fear if you come down with a cold.