Understanding Miscarriage -- Prevention
How Can I Prevent a Miscarriage?
About 35% of women who have had two consecutive miscarriages have a third. Work with your doctor to determine the reason for your miscarriage, if possible, and to plan a future pregnancy. Genetic abnormalities in the fetus cause most miscarriages, and there's not much that can be done to prevent them. However, a healthy lifestyle before and during pregnancy can help.
One vital step is to become as healthy as possible before conception. Be sure to take at least 600 mg of folic acid every day, beginning at least one to two months before conception. Exercise regularly, eat healthy meals, manage stress, and keep your weight within normal limits. Don't smoke and stay away from secondhand smoke. While trying to get pregnant and during pregnancy, don't drink alcohol or have more than one to two cups of coffee a day.
These steps may help to prevent miscarriage, too:
- Avoid radiation and poisons such as arsenic, lead, formaldehyde, benzene, and ethylene oxide.
- Take special care to keep your abdomen safe while pregnant. Avoid sports that carry a higher risk for injury, such as contact sports and skiing, and always wear your seat belt.
- Check with your doctor before taking any medication, including over-the-counter drugs, during pregnancy.
- Avoid environmental hazards such as X-rays and infectious diseases.
You can also help ensure a healthy baby by finding out about and treating any health conditions you have before you try to conceive. If, for example, you know a previous miscarriage was due to an autoimmune response or a hormonal imbalance, seek treatment for this underlying condition. Once you become pregnant, get early, comprehensive prenatal care to improve your chances of a healthy pregnancy.