If you’re recovering from a recent pregnancy loss, your mind and body have been through a lot and it may take some time to readjust. It might help to have some understanding of what to expect from your body during this time, including your period. Here’s what to expect from your first period after miscarriage:
When will I get my first period after pregnancy loss?
You can usually expect your first period 4-6 weeks after a miscarriage. If you still haven’t had yours by this time it’s a good idea to contact a healthcare professional, especially if your cycle was regular before pregnancy. There are a few factors that may impact how long it takes for your period to return, including:
- How regular your periods have been in the past – if your cycle is usually irregular, it’s likely to remain this way. This might mean that it can take longer than the average 4-6 weeks to resume.
- How far along you were in the pregnancy – getting your period back will depend on your HCG levels HCG increases the further into your pregnancy you are (up to 12 weeks), so periods after an early miscarriage may return sooner than after a later miscarriage.
It’s important to note that while you might have a period within six weeks, it can take longer than this for the regularity of your cycle to return. Your hormones change a lot while you’re pregnant and they’ll need some time to return to your usual cycle.
What will my first period after a miscarriage be like?
Your first period after a miscarriage might be different to the periods you’re used to. Common changes you might notice in this first period could include:
- Heavier bleeding
- A longer period
- More painful than usual
- Some discharge with an odour
After around 2-3 cycles your period should return to what was normal for you before you were pregnant. If it doesn’t, and you continue to have heavy periods or an irregular menstrual cycle after a miscarriage, be sure to check in with a healthcare professional.
Will PMS be different after a miscarriage?
After a pregnancy loss, your hormones can fluctuate significantly. This and the emotional impact of experiencing a miscarriage can both mean that PMS symptoms may be more intense than you’re used to.
During this time, it’s important to keep an eye on how you’re feeling in yourself. Seek help if you think your pain might be cause for concern or you might have depression or anxiety. Grief affects all of us differently and it’s important to get emotional support. A healthcare professional can point you to support services available and help you to explore the options available. Here is some advice from the NHS on getting support after a miscarriage.
Ovulation after miscarriage
When your period resumes after a pregnancy loss so does the rest of your menstrual cycle, often including ovulation. This means that if you don’t want to get pregnant, you should use contraception when having sex. If you do want to get pregnant, it’s a good idea to speak to a healthcare professional about how you’re feeling physically and emotionally before trying for to get pregnant after a miscarriage.
Some people may not ovulate on their first period after a miscarriage, which may make PMS more painful than you’re used to. This is because when you don’t ovulate, the endometrial lining becomes thicker, causing a heavier, more painful period.
Above all, it’s important to take some time to be gentle with and look after yourself. Your experiences and feelings are valid, and you’re not alone. If you need help processing or understanding what’s happened or what comes next, speak to your healthcare provider and they will be able to guide you or tell you about organisations that can help.
Do you have anything to add about your own experience that may help someone else? Tell us in the comments if you feel comfortable.