Pregnancy After Miscarriage: How Long Should You Wait?

4 Instances Where You Should Wait to Get Pregnant After Miscarriage

Pregnant woman worried over pregnancy test
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Pregnancy after miscarriage scares a lot of women. Will it happen again? Why did it happen the first time? Am I broken? Did I cause the miscarriage? How long should I wait to try again? These are just some of the questions that women ask themselves.

It can be hard to find real answers for many of those questions, so you try to push them away and just try again—Except you might have heard that in order to protect future pregnancies from a miscarriage, you should wait a certain amount of time before becoming pregnant again to help ensure a better outcome for the next pregnancy.

 

Fortunately science now has definitive answers for how long to wait until you can try getting pregnant again. 

How Long to Wait to After a Miscarriage?

The truth is that it appears that women do not need to wait to become pregnant again after a miscarriage, according to an American study published in the journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

The study researchers followed a 1,000 couples after an early pregnancy miscarriage, and found that of the 765 people who tried to get pregnant again within 3 months, 53% were able to have a live birth (compared to 36.1% for those who waited longer than 3 months to try again).

In an earlier study by Scottish researchers, it was also suggested that you may have better pregnancy outcomes if you get pregnant again within a 6 month period following a miscarriage.

Then Why Did My Doctor Tell Me to Wait?

Although there are no benefits in waiting to try again, there are a few small exceptions that may hinder your chances of getting "back in the saddle" too soon.

The four instances that your doctor or midwife may have warned you about include:

  • Infection
    If you have an infection, or it was the suspected cause of your miscarriage, you should be infection free before attempting to get pregnant after a miscarriage.
  • Two or More Miscarriages
    Your practitioner may want you to do some testing to see if a cause can be found as to why you are having miscarriages. This may take a couple of months.
  • You are not emotionally ready to move on.
    We all grieve differently. If you do not feel emotionally up for a new pregnancy or ready to move on, then you should respect that feeling and wait until you are ready to conceive again.
  • Your partner is not ready.
    It takes two to tango as they say and if your partner needs time, then your partner needs time. Do not try to rush back into conceiving again unless you are both ready.

Jumping Back In

It can be easier to get pregnant once your period returns, though you can still get pregnant before your period has resumed. So if any of the four instances above apply to you, then you may want to use birth control, like a condom.

The only real difficulty posed by getting pregnant prior to your period's return, is getting an accurate date on the pregnancy. This can be easily rectified with an early ultrasound to figure out when you would be due by calculating how far along you are in pregnancy. This is most accurate in the first trimester.

Sources:

Schliep K, Mitchell E, Mumford SL, et al. Trying to Conceive After an Early Pregnancy Loss: An Assessment on How Long Couples Should Wait. Obstetrics & Gynecology. Feb 2016.

Love, ER, Bhattacharya, S, Smith, NC, Bhattacharya, S. Effect of interpregnancy interval on outcomes of pregnancy after miscarriage: retrospective analysis of hospital episode statistics in Scotland. BMJ. 2010;341:c3967

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