Alcohol Use After Pregnancy Loss

Approximately 15% of women who discover they are pregnant will experience a miscarriage.  Losing a pregnancy can be incredibly tragic and difficult to process, and can also lead to anxiety and depression when parents may have already developed love for their unborn child and are now suffering from grief.  For those who have the heartbreaking experience of stillbirth, meaning the pregnancy lasted past twenty weeks, the loss can even cause symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder. While some symptoms may dissipate after a period of mourning, many people who experience this loss go on to have lingering mental health issues for a significant amount of time, and even after subsequent successful pregnancies.

The grief and anxiety surrounding pregnancy loss is often downplayed and overlooked by medical professionals, leaving women isolated and alone without the care they need to heal from their painful experience.  Many women turn to alcohol to numb their sorrow during this time, and this excessive drinking can easily lead to an addiction. It is also common for men to develop depressive symptoms after their partner’s pregnancy loss, and because men are more likely to suppress their emotions or ignore their own pain so they can focus on their partner, they too are vulnerable to substance abuse as a means to cope.

There are many reasons heavy alcohol use is dangerous and ill-advised for couples who have experienced pregnancy loss.  For those wishing to become pregnant again, alcohol decreases the man’s sperm count, and can lead to miscarriage if consumed before the woman finds out she is pregnant.  Alcohol also worsens depression and makes it very difficult to process your emotions in a healthy and productive way. Substance abuse always comes with the risk of addiction, and addiction brings a whole host of problems, including the potential to damage your relationship with your partner and result in various health issues.  

The best way to handle the trauma of pregnancy loss is to establish sobriety and focus on your mental health.  At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan.  We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness. If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 844-413-2690.