Pregnancy loss is a terribly painful experience, and unfortunately, a lot of women know this firsthand. Up to 1 in 4 confirmed pregnancies ends in miscarriage, with up to 85% of losses occurring within the first trimester. The actual percentage of pregnancy losses is likely far higher, since many miscarriages happen before a woman even realizes she's pregnant.
But just knowing that pregnancy loss is relatively common does not make it any easier. Loss takes a toll on your body both physically and emotionally and mamas need support through the journey. While it might be hard to wrap your head around self-care in a time of grieving, we’re here to remind you that you and your health matter, and it is important to care for yourself following a loss.
Why nourishment is (still) needed after pregnancy loss.
Somewhere between the zero and the fourth trimester, the physical experience of pregnancy loss is a time of recovery, and for many a time when trying to conceive again is top of mind.
Your body and mind need support through the tough phases of loss and recovery, so be sure to give yourself grace and space to grieve, but also to nourish and replenish. We’ve had some mamas reach out and ask if they should continue their prenatal nutrition routine through a loss, and we, along with our medical advisors, give this a wholehearted, yes. Here’s why:
1. To replenish and maintain nutrients
It might not seem like much is happening during early pregnancy, since you can’t physically see a growing baby, but a tremendous amount of growth and development is happening and big changes take place in your body. This development demands a significant amount of nutrients, and cutting off your supplements can leave your body in a state of depletion.
2. To help your body recover
Even though your pregnancy ended before 40 weeks, your body will still go through a post-pregnancy state during which it will recover from pregnancy and loss. Supporting this process through supplementation, just as you would during the postpartum period following a birth, helps your body return to a balanced and healthy state. Our Prenatal Multi and Collagen Protein are ideal for recovery and tissue repair.
3. To support blood loss
No matter when or how your pregnancy ends, your body loses blood, and miscarriage bleeding can be significant. If you aren’t consuming rich sources of heme iron several times per week, it’s likely you could benefit from an Iron supplement. Of course, the best approach is to have your levels tested by your OB or midwife, but if you’re experiencing symptoms of anemia like extreme fatigue, weakness, pale skin, chest pain, fast heartbeat, shortness of breath, headache, dizziness, lightheadedness, cold hands and feet, inflammation or soreness of your tongue, brittle nails, and unusual cravings for non-food substances like ice or dirt., there’s a good chance your levels are below optimal.
4. To support future pregnancies
We know that another pregnancy may not be something you’re ready for yet, but just as it is recommended to start prenatal supplementation several months before trying to conceive, it is wise to continue supplementation if you do plan to try again in the next several months. Pregnancy after miscarriage is a common and often healing experience, and it’s ideal to support it through prenatal supplementation if you’re planning for it. In addition to nutrient support from the vitamins and minerals in our comprehensive Prenatal Multi, our Pre/Probiotic can help to optimize your microbiome in advance of a subsequent pregnancy. A healthy microbiome has been shown to improve fertility and pregnancy outcomes.
In addition, CoQ10 is a powerful antioxidant that supports both sperm and egg health. Our CoQ10 is in the optimal antioxidant form of Ubiquinol and is designed to be taken by both partners in the preconception phase.
5. To nourish beyond nutrition
Sleep and stress are two lifestyle factors that are affected by a pregnancy loss and that also influence other health parameters. Supporting your sleep and stress is an important part of your healing journey.
Our Sleep + Relaxation Support includes a targeted blend of chamomile, magnesium, and L-theanine for a restful night’s sleep. Our Stress Support supports a healthy response to stress with adaptogenic and nervine botanicals selected and dosed to balance and uplift you. Other ways to support stress and sleep include meditation, movement, journaling, limiting caffeine, and avoiding blue light at night.
At Needed, we exist to nourish, educate, and empower mamas and mamas-to-be. We want you to know that if you’ve experienced a miscarriage, we see you and we are here to support you with well-researched and thoughtfully-developed supplements intended to give you and your baby the healthiest start possible together, no matter where on that journey you are.