The 2 most common causes of miscarriage and how to avoid them

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According to a new study, making these simple lifestyle changes can decrease the risk of miscarriages. Read on to find out more.

Losing a child even before you bring them into the world is one of the most heartbreaking and devastating thinks parents could go through. While many cases can't be avoided, experts say that some cases can be prevented if moms-to-be adopt certain lifestyle changes, which are simple and manageable. It also helps to know the common causes of miscarriage.

Causes of miscarriage

Medical Daily, citing a study published in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, urged would-be moms to avoid the two most common causes of miscarriage.

The Danish study's aim was to identify manageable risk factors to gauge the number of preventable percent of miscarriages. Gathering data based on 90,000 pregnancies over the course of six years--from 1996 to 2002--they found that around 3,200 ended in miscarriages.

The study also found these risk factors for causes of miscarriage: amount of exercise, smoking, coffee consumption, demanding work schedule, heavy lifting, pre-pregnancy weight, and genital diseases. Making lifestyle changes to avoid this could decrease miscarriages by up to 15 percent.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, the two most common risk factors are alcohol consumption and age of conception. They also state that miscarriages happen to about 1/4 of pregnancies.

"Our results indicate that the risk of miscarriage is increased by multiple potentially modifiable risk factors and a considerable proportion of miscarriages may be preventable," study co-author Sandra Feodor told Medical Daily.

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Let's take a closer look at the two most common risk factors for miscarriage.

Age of Conception

The aforementioned study believes 12 percent of miscarriages could be avoided if the age of conception is between 25 and 29 years old.

A recent study from the University of Texas states that the most ideal age for a woman to have children is 34 years old. However, a study out of the University of Rochester says that getting pregnant in your thirties increases the risk of miscarriages, pregnancy complications, gestational diabetes, increased blood pressure, and difficuly labor.

Also known as "mature pregnancies," babies born to thirty-something moms have an increased risk of birth defects or chromosomal abnormalities, such as Down syndrome.

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Alcohol consumption

The Danish study found that around 9 percent of miscarriages would have been avoided if there had been zero alcohol consumption while pregnant.

Not only can consuming alcohol while pregnant increase the chances of miscarriage, it has also been found to be the most common cause of severe birth defects, according to the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. They urge moms-to-be to avoid any form of alcohol as it can also lead to fetal alcohol syndrome, which is an alarming condition that manifests in physical defects, behavioral abnormalities, stunted growth, and mental retardation.

READ: Conceiving after a miscarriage more likely to result in successful pregnancy, says research

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