Pregnancy and Infant Loss

The Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness movement began in the United States in October 1988 when President Ronald Reagan designated, through Presidential Proclamation, that the month of October should be recognized as National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month.

Houston is home to doulas who support families through loss. Do not feel like you have to experience your loss alone. There is support for you. Visit the Still Birth Day website to find a doula in your area.

Pregnancy Infant Loss

Statistics

There are approximately 6 million pregnancies every year throughout the United States:

  • 4,058,000 live births
  • 1,995,840 pregnancy losses

Every year in the United States there are approximately 2 million women who experience pregnancy loss:

  • 600,000 women experience pregnancy loss through miscarriage
  • 1,200,000 women experience pregnancy loss through termination
  • 64,000 women experience pregnancy loss through ectopic pregnancy
  • 6,000 women experience pregnancy loss through molar pregnancies
  • 26,000 women experience pregnancy loss through stillbirth

Every year in the United States:

  • 875,000 woman experience one or more pregnancy complications
  • 458,952 babies are born to mothers without adequate prenatal care
  • 467,201 babies are born prematurely
  • 307,030 babies are born with Low Birth Weight
  • 154,051 children are born with Birth Defects
  • 27,864 infants die before their first birthday

Source: American Pregnancy Association

Signs of Grief

**This list is not comprehensive, nor is it meant to be used as a diagnostic tool. It is meant to be used as a reference to those who are grieving and to their support team.

Physical:
Tightness in chest
Tightness in throat
Hypersensitivity to noise
Headaches
Weak muscles
Lack of energy
Dry mouth
Trouble swallowing

Behavior:
Trouble sleeping
Loss of appetite
Forgetfulness
Social withdrawals
Dreams of deceased
Avoidance of reminders
Calling out
Restless Activity
Crying
Clinging to reminders
Treasuring objects

Emotions:
Sadness
Anger
Guilt
Anxiety
Loneliness
Fatigue
Helplessness
Shock
Yearning
Numbness
Relief

Mental:
Disbelief
Confusion
Pre-occupation
Sense of presence
Hearing and seeing the deceased

If you are grieving and feeling overwhelmed, please seek help.  There are many excellent resources, both nationally and locally, for people who are grieving from loss. Please do not suffer in silence. If you are in the Houston area and need help finding support, contact me for a list of references.

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