23 Causes Of Miscarriage That You Never Knew

23 Causes Of Miscarriage That you Never Knew!

Maternal Health Mindset Pregnancy Tips

A miscarriage is always vicious no matter if mentally, emotionally or physically. Miscarriages are so lousy that most women even take days in order to overcome from this emotional breakdown. About 23 million pregnancy losses happen every year and 44 miscarriages in each minute, because of various yet brutal reasons. But what are they? What are the things that cause miscarriage during pregnancy?

Smoking, alcohol consumption, eating papaya etc. are only count to few, because there are up to 15 dangerous causes of pregnancy failures.

But before we jump right into the topic, let’s get a wide view on what is miscarriage and what symptoms does it include.


A miscarriage is a spontaneous loss of pregnancy before the 20th week of gestation. This mishappen happens when the fetus fails to get develop as it was expected to be.

About half of all cases of miscarriages are associated with chromosomal abnormalities. This abnormality occurs when the baby acquires some extra or missing chromosomes.

It is also being seen that, nearly 1/3 to ½ of all pregnancies come to an end before the women misses a mensuration period, more interestingly when being knowing that they are pregnant.

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Only about 1% of pregnancy losses occur at the terminal of 20th week and are known as late miscarriages.


Miscarriages are hurtful both physically and emotionally. They comprise some abnormal symptoms such as

  • Severe Uterine Contraction
  • Vaginal Bleeding Including Fluid and Tissue
  • Painful sensation in abdomen lower back or pelvis
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • A feeling of sadness or grief
  • Cramping

These are the uncommon abnormal symptoms of miscarriage.

Now let’s get back to what that probably got you hooked, “What causes miscarriages”. So, without going at a snail’s pace, let’s get right into the topic.


What exactly cause miscarriage. Why these 15 reasons are most blamed.
Photo Courtesy: pregarlybody officials

The following ones demonstrated below are the factors that cause miscarriage. Some of them are diseases, some are infections and few other are lifestyle choices and the environment someone adopts.

Everything maters in pregnancy and you so well know that.


Pregnancy alters the immune system, on top of that lowers it. The rapid hormonal changes in the body and vast secretion of pregnancy hormones such as estrogen and progesterone are hugely blamed for it.

However, auto immune disorders that mostly occur in women’s reproductive years, can contribute the most to miscarriages.

Health complications including lupus, graves disease, rheumatoid arthritis and more vastly magnify the possibility of it.

Women having lupus- One of the auto immune diseases are at greater risk to miscarry since it causes

  • Kidney disease
  • High Blood pressure
  • Antiphospholipid Antibodies

These unhealthful health complications contribute the greater chances of miscarrying.


Bad choices bad results, as simple as that. Unhealthy lifestyle factors such as smoking during pregnancy, alcohol consumption and using illicit drugs frequently lead to miscarriage.

And if not miscarriage, the baby is more likely to face greater complications in future as well.  Such as

  • Low birth weight
  • Face breathing difficulties
  • Acquire high risk of SIDS
  • Become vulnerable to infections
  • Cleft lips and palate
  • Lower Intelligence
  • Premature baby.

Women who do smoke, in habit of drinking alcohol and get in contact with Tabaco smoke  acquire a higher risk to miscarry in comparison to those who don’t.

The toxic components present in these deadly substances can pass from mother to her baby via placenta. As placenta is not a filter, it fails to stave of toxicity delivered by the blood stream of mother’s to baby’s.

The baby’s organs are still under developed to this very point so it may face difficulties to process the bad elements.

This however leads to miscarriage or worse outcomes.


Pregnant women get thoroughly advised to have a balanced diet and most of the foods are considered as safe to eat in this period.

However, there are some eatables that can frequently lead to miscarriage.

Papaya, for example, a kind fruit that comprises lots of nutrients in it. But, having unripe papayas in pregnancy can set off uterine contractions thus leads to miscarriage.

As like papaya, there are plenty of foods to avoid during pregnancy. For the corresponding activities they initiate.

  • Unpasteurized dairy products
  • Unpasteurized fruit juices
  • Sesame seeds
  • Aloe Vera
  • Raw sea food
  • High mercury fish
  • Raw eggs
  • Under Cooked Meats
  • Papaya
  • Unwashed vegetables
  • Caffeine in larger amount
  • Blue Cheese

This is the list of foods that frequently caused miscarriage.


Environment, mostly, bad environment has a lot to do with pregnancy.

Living in places with poor air quality or tobacco smoking increases the chances of spontaneous abortion in gestating women.

Poor air containing pollutants like heavy metals, ozone and fine shoot particles shoot up the risk of early pregnancy loss.

This happens because the unborn baby gets easily influenced by toxic environmental pollutants.

Referring to carbon monoxide-a deadly element of contaminated air, can affect the metabolic and overall transport functions of the placenta.

This unusual factor can possibly lead to fetal hypoxia, eventually causing death of the fetus in the womb.


Oftentimes food poisoning during pregnancy causes a little to no impact on the fetus as well as on the mother.

But there are certain types of food poisoning that can be pretty harmful for the developing of the baby.

The most dangerous food poisoning for mothers-to-be include

  • Listeriosis
  • Salmonellosis
  • Campylobacter
  • Toxoplasmosis 

On several occasions, these contamination of foods cause preterm labor, miscarriage and stillbirth.

And this is how food poisoning becomes one of the things that cause miscarriage.


Having recurrent infections becomes a basic thing while expecting.

Pregnancy infections mostly occur for the rapid hormonal changes and most of them are common too.

For example, urinary tract infection, yeast infection etc.

Nevertheless, some infections that occur in pregnancy can bring the greater risks of miscarriage.

These infections, however, include

These above mentioned infections increase the chances of miscarriage in pregnancy.


Hormonal imbalances and irregularities are ones of the leading contributors of pregnancy losses.

This can result in failure to progress the pregnancy according to the plan as it harms the proper development of the uterine lining for implantation.

This major problem can even affect the nourishment of a fertilized egg causing pregnancy loss.

Very female hormones are important for implantation, but when the levels prolactin and progesterone are low , the body will probably not be able to carry the baby to term.


Ectopic pregnancy is one of the fatal pregnancies one could ever come across.

In this pregnancy, the fetus is forced to implant and develop outside of the uterus due to several disturbing factors.

Since the baby can not develop outside of the uterus, the only treatment to save the mother’s life is to put a stop to the development of the baby.

So, miscarriage is a must in ectopic pregnancy.

However, if the fertilized egg leaves to grow, it will certainly damage its nearby organs and cause life threatening internal bleeding in the mother.

So, the baby may never be able to survive from an ectopic pregnancy, but if early measures are not taken, it can be risky for the mother as well.


The symptoms of ectopic pregnancy includes

  • Pain in pelvis and abdomen especially on one side
  • Having bloating, nausea and vomiting
  • Vaginal bleeding or spotting
  • Abnormal cramping


Mother’s age is fairly impact in the cases of frequent pregnancy losses.

It has been observed that the more the mother’s age, the  more she is likely to miscarry. Mostly if she is aging over 35.

At age of 35 the chances of miscarriage is reported to be 20%, still it shoots up to 80% by the age 45.

For most women, the first trimester miscarriage happen because of chromosomal problems in the baby.

Besides, the risk of chromosomal imbalances increases as the woman’s age increases.

So, the disturbances in chromosomes can directly harm the embryo, making the path of pregnancy loss clearer.

In short, with age, the risk of miscarriage is dramatically higher.


Having a poorly managed blood pressure can result in various problems in the maternal period.

For example, it can possibly cause placental abruption, least oxygen and nutrients supply to the baby, lower birth weight, premature labor and as you would expect a miscarriage.

Having too high blood pressure or pre-eclampsia poses decreased blood flow to the placenta.

Since blood is the only deliverer of oxygen and nutrients to the baby, leading to intrauterine growth restriction.

Intrauterine growth restriction, in response, can result with miscarriage.


The risk of miscarriage goes up with the weight.

Having ill managed body mass in pregnancy can be troublesome since it can cause miscarriage inb company with recurrent miscarriages.

Being overweight during pregnancy can complicate other disturbing health complications as well.

For example, obesity while pregnant is affiliated with problems including

  • ill managed high blood pressure that can complicate pre-eclampsia
  • Gestational diabetes that can be tough to manage

These factors, as a result, can cause miscarriage.

In addition, obesity is also linked with increasing difficulties for women having PCOS, who already are in danger to face miscarriage.

Also Read:

How Meditation During Pregnancy Can Ease Your Emotional Wringer?


Certain conditions that affect the kidneys are affiliated with the increased risk of pregnancy losses.

In fact, women having kidney failure are often advised against conceiving.

This can push the mother’s as well as baby’s life into danger, because the rates of miscarriages with kidney disease are dramatically high.

Having affected kidneys makes a fork to get infections easily.

For example, it can improve the chances of asymptomatic urinary tract infection which can consequently lead to kidney infection.

Moreover, kidney infection can be serious in the cases of pregnancies as it can promote multiple kidney, in bonus, miscarriages.

Apart from that only, having affected kidneys can cause kidney stones and pre-eclampsia both of which are lethal in pregnancy.


Signs of kidney problems while pregnant typically includes

  • Infrequent or too frequent urination
  • High blood pressure
  • Anemia
  • Chronic back pain
  • Swelling and pain in feet and hands
  • Bone diseases
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Trouble in sleeping
  • Dry and itchy skin
  • Shortness of breath
  • Urinating either too much or too little


One of the major causes of miscarriages during pregnancy is having an uncontrolled or ill controlled gestational diabetes.

Women who are diabetic are at much risk in facing stillbirth and miscarriage compared to those who aren’t.

Moreover, a consequence of gestational diabetes is having too much amniotic fluid in the womb. And it’s technically called polyhydramnios.

This condition can adversely affect the fetus causing prolapsed umbilical cord, preterm labor, stillbirth, placental abruption and miscarriage.

Besides, having gestation diabetes also raises the risk of facing high blood pressure in conjunction with pre-eclampsia both of which can cause miscarriage.


In most cases, gestational diabetes does not show any symptoms. But when symptomatic, it can include often neglect-able indications including

  • Feeling fatigued
  • Excessive hunger and thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Yeast infection
  • Fetal macrosomia
  • Sugar in urine


Caffeine has always been the silent contributor to most of the  miscarriages.

People who intake high amounts of caffeine while trying for pregnancy are probable to lose the pregnancy early on.

And that goes equally both in cases of men and women.

In fact, a study reported that caffeine is strongly linked spontaneous abortion more than alcohol or cigarette use in early pregnancy.

That’s because the molecules of caffeine can easily cross through the placenta to the fetus.

But, as the baby’s metabolic system is still underdeveloped, it may fail to metabolize caffeine that one intakes.

Caffeine can also cause the placental blood flow to get minimal, leading to less nutrient and oxygen supply to the baby.

This factor consequently leads to fetal restriction and miscarriage.


Problems associated with thyroid abnormalities can bring concerning outcomes in pregnancy.

For example, untreated thyroid conditions when pregnant are notably linked to fetal consequences including premature birth, stillbirth and miscarriage.

Since thyroid hormones help your body work. That’s why, when it’s under active or overactive it can provide problems in pregnancy.

In addition, women having higher TSH levels or thyroid stimulating hormone are more certain to encounter miscarriage.

Untreated thyroid disease can even be the root source for pre-eclampsia that causes miscarriage most of the time.


Most of the symptoms of thyroid problems can often be taken as early pregnancy symptoms.

It includes symptoms that are as same as seen in early maternal period include

  • Severe vomiting and nausea
  • Trouble in sleeping
  • Weight changes(can be gain or loss)
  • Irregular heartbeat(can be slowed or increased)
  • Shaking hands
  • Heightened nervousness
  • Feeling tired or sluggish
  • Feeling depressed
  • Sensitivity to heat or cold

The above mentioned signs can indicate hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.

But thankfully, if your thyroid problems are under control, then there is no question that you will have a healthy pregnancy.


Invasive prenatal tests provide an evolved risk of miscarriages.

Moreover, these tests are implemented for gathering more information about chromosomal or genetic abnormality of the fetus, that caught a doubt while conducting non-invasive screening tests.

In general there are 4 types of invasive prenatal tests, such as

  • Chronic Villus Sampling(CVS)
  • Amniocentesis
  • Fetoscopy
  • Percutaneous Umbilical Cord Blood Sampling

All these prenatal tests are risky for the baby and oftentimes result with pregnancy losses.

Let’s know how they do that clearly.


Chronic villus sampling(CVS) is done around the first and second trimester which has a higher rate of causing miscarriages other than any invasise prenatal tests.

The procedure takes place to examine fetal genetic diseases.

Early testing with CVS requires taking a sample of tissue from the placenta to test for chromosomal and genetic abnormalities of the baby.

However, it is the riskiest process that can cause some of the baby’s blood cells to enter into the mother’s bloodstream.

The risk of miscarrige after a CVS test is 1 in 100 pregnancies.


Amniocentesis is the process that is done for diagnosing chromosomal abnormalities, fetal infections and even sex determination of the baby.

This procedure requires a small amount of amniotic fluid containing fetal tissues for examination.

Besides, this procedure even is risky since it can cause infection, bleeding or damage to the amniotic sac, leading the result of miscarriage.

Most pregnancy losses after Amniocentesis happen within 3 days after this process.


As like the other contributors, Fetoscopy can lead to miscarriage as well.

Fetoscopy is used for the direct visualization of the fetus after 8 weeks of gestation.

This prenatal test takes place to diagnose neural tube defects of the baby.

This procedure requires the penetration of a small camera or scope directly for observing any problems on the fetus.

The risk associated with Fetoscopy is , however, includes the injury or losing the fetus during the procedure.


Percutaneous umbilical cord blood sampling also referred as cordocentesis is an invasive test that requires taking a sample of the fetus’s blood from the umbilical cord for testing any abnormalities of the baby.

Although this procedure is considered safe, it is also an invasive prenatal procedure.

And it also holds an evolved risk of causing complications to the baby as other procedures do.


The risks while undertaking cordocentesis or Percutaneous umbilical cord blood sampling includes

  • Slowing baby’s heart rate
  • Fetal infections
  • Maternal bleeding
  • Fetal bleeding
  • Cord hematoma
  • Passing maternal infection
  • Pregnancy loss

However, the pregnancy loss caused in this process won’t be referred as miscarriage as they are only performed after 24 weeks of gestational period.


About 80 percent of all miscarriages occur in the first trimester and the typical miscarriages are concentrated with the effect of chromosomal abnormalities.

Well, when the sperm fertilizes an egg, the union builds up a baby having 46 chromosomes.

But if somehow the union does not happen normally, it certainly leads to miscarriage.

Or simplifying all, if the fetus holds an extra chromosome (trisomy), or bears a missing chromosome(monosomy), then it can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth or genetic abnormalities of the baby.

But in most cases it results with miscarriage.

In addition, there is no way to treat or prevent chromosomal abnormalities of a baby.


Chromosomal abnormalities are unpredictable. Why they exactly happen is still a mystery.

But the possibility of chromosomal problems can be higher if these following factors are undertaken.

  • Illicit drugs
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Tobacco intake
  • Toxic chemicals
  • Certain medicines
  • Certain virus and bacteria
  • Radiation
  • Uncontrolled diabetes

Being older, in advance, can interfere with chromosomal activities. Thus, older women have a higher risk of miscarriages than the younger ones.


Having STDs or STIs are severely linked with threatful consequences including preterm delivery, stillbirth, maternal complications as well as miscarriage.

STDs can complicate the pregnancy and interfere with the development of the baby or totally hamper it.

Chlamydia is the most commonly reported STD that is noticed before conceiving and in the gestational period. It can cross the placenta and infect the baby.

Other STDs like gonorrhea, hepatitis B, genital herpes can cross the birth canal easily, affecting the fetus.

  • Bumps and sores near the mouth, anus and vagina
  • Swelling and reddening of vagina
  • Painful urination
  • Painful sensation during sexual intercourse
  • Vaginal bleeding
  • Severe itching near vagina
  • Vaginal discharges having bad odor
  • Weight loss and loose stool
  • Night sweats
  • Skin rash having or without pain
  • Aches, pains, chills and fever
  • Jaundice or yellowing of skin

These are the signs and symptoms of STDs even in pregnant women or non pregnant.


Blood clotting troubles that block the placenta in no question, cause fatal consequences.

But most often they result in pregnancy loss.

Blood clots in the placenta can block the supply of important elements including oxygen and blood to the baby. This factor, as a result, can lead to miscarriage or stillbirth of the bay.

For example,thrombophilia is a type of clotting disorder that makes individuals susceptible to blood clot formation in the body.

This condition in most times result in recurrent miscarriages.

Pulmonary embolism, a condition caused by deep vein thrombosis, can even answer with blood clots in the placenta.

High blood pressure in addition can prevent placenta from getting enough blood and nutrients. This can impair the proper development of the baby.

Pre-eclampsia, a consequence of having overly high BP can affect the arteries to carry blood to the placenta.

20. APS

Pregnant women having APS are at greater risk of experiencing miscarriages as smokers do.

In fact, women having APS are at risk to face miscarriage throughout the pregnancy.

As about APS or antiphospholipid syndrome, it is a disorder where the immune system, by mistake, attacks the normal proteins in the blood.

It can cause blood clots to build up in the arteries, veins as well as in organs and is severely linked with frequent miscarriages.

Most miscarriages in women with APS occurs in early stages of pregnancy.

That’s because it prevents the pregnancy from implanting in the womb by inhibiting the early growth of the fetal cells.

APS can also cause recurrent and late miscarriages.


Pregnancy has its own risk, even in healthy and perfectly fine women. But those who have congenital heart disease are more likely to face complications.

However, with careful planning, most women get a successful pregnancy even having CHD or congenital heart disease.

But not having any planning before and after conceiving with CHD can make it tough for the fetus to grow normally.

Due to the fact that, heart doesn’t pump properly with CHD, it may not supply the right amount of blood and oxygen to the baby.

Thus, the baby may born prematurely or a miscarriage may also happen.

Along with that, CHD also risks for premature of the baby, low birth weight, the risk of recurrence of CHD and offspring mortality.


Radiation exposure at the medical testing is unlikely to harm the fetus. But high radiation exposure can put serious effects on the baby.

For example, it can cause failure of the embryo to implant in womb and miscarriage.

The exposure to greater than 0.5Gy radiation can be severe for the baby to tolerate even if it’s too low for the mother to face any immediate effects.

However, the high exposure to radiation can cause growth retardation, impaired brain function, miscarriage and more complications.


Believe it or not, a previous miscarriage can be the root cause of a miscarriage again.

Multiple evidence shows, the predicted chance of pregnancy loss in a future pregnancy evolves for about 20% after a miscarriage.

This risk then gets 28% after two consecutive miscarriage and shoots up-to 43% after three or more recurrent miscarriages.

Both structural problems of the uterus and chromosomal issues can cause recurrent miscarriages. But other causes may include

  • Thyroid problems
  • Blood clotting disorders
  • Genetic abnormalities
  • Natural killer cells
  • Being older
  • Weakened cervix

These factors can make it difficult to get pregnant again after facing a miscarriage.

Or they may also have been the root contributors of the previous miscarriages.

All things considered, these are the risk factors that provide a better route to miscarriage.

However, asides any certain heath condition that demands medical attention and chromosomal abnormality which is unpreventable, it is somehow possible to prevent miscarriages.

Thus, have a glance over the prevarications that you can and should undertake to avoid miscarriages.


Not all miscarriages happen for chromosomal abnormalities. Some also depend on the things that you choose in your day to day life.

For this reason, perform these following things to get a better resistance against miscarriage.

  • Eat healthy and balanced meals to maintain a healthy weight
  • Exercise regularly
  • Avoid lifting any heavy objects the very moment you get to know you’re expecting now
  • Intake at least 400 mcg of folic acid per day, prior to one or two months before conception
  • Avoid smoking and stay away from second hand smokers
  • Avoid conditions and sports that can cause physical shock on your stomach like horse riding, outdoor games that risks falling
  • Don’t consume alcohol as well as illicit drugs
  • Manage stress
  • Take immunization seriously
  • Always wear seat belt
  • Avoid radiation
  • Limit caffeine intake
  • Screen for std
  • Stay away from bad environmental conditions such as air pollution, infectious disease, X-rays
  • Don’t take an over the counter medicines with the permission of your doctor
  • Be more hygienic
  • Drink enough water


There are multiple things that most women and people think cause miscarriage. But they seriously don’t.

These factors include

  • Working
  • Watching horror movies
  • Stressful conditions
  • Having sex
  • Exercising
  • Arguments
  • Eating spicy foods
  • Eating properly ripe papaya


So, these were the staggering causes of miscarriage of all time. I hope that you found this article pretty informative.

However, this article is quite a stressful read & I completely accept that.

That’s why i recommend you to read my post next, things that your baby loves in the womb, which you will find relaxing as well as informational.

Apart from that, I hope that you came to know more than just a thing or two about the things that cause miscarriage during pregnancy.

All at the end pregarlybody wishes you a healthy pregnancy ahead.

Patricia Pifer

Patricia Pifer is the main author of pregarlybody.com website. She’s an avid health and fitness enthusiast and loves sharing her passion for juicing with others.