If you’re facing an unplanned pregnancy and considering abortion, protecting your health is important. While you’re likely feeling overwhelmed about how to move forward, there are three practical steps you can take to safeguard yourself against the physical and emotional risks of abortion.
Read on to learn more about the three essential things you need before an abortion. Or, if you want to talk to someone in person about abortion or your other pregnancy options, contact the Open Door Pregnancy Center to be connected with one of our caring team members.
Ultrasound is a harmless scan that uses sound waves to create an image of your internal organs. During pregnancy, an ultrasound can reveal the following key details about your pregnancy:
- Location. A typical pregnancy attaches and grows inside the uterus. But sometimes, the pregnancy develops outside the uterus. This is known as “ectopic pregnancy,” a life-threatening situation requiring immediate medical treatment.
- Age. During an ultrasound, the nurse will take measurements that can help verify the relative age of your pregnancy. This information is needed if you’re seeking an abortion because it will dictate the available options.
- Viability. The ultrasound can detect signs of life, which is important considering roughly 26% of pregnancies end in miscarriage. If you’re experiencing a miscarriage, following up with a qualified healthcare professional is necessary to determine the next steps for treatment.
Looking for a free ultrasound? At the Open Door Pregnancy Center, we offer free, limited ultrasounds after you’ve received a positive pregnancy test result at our clinic. Contact us to schedule your confidential appointment today.
2. Know the Facts
Abortion is a permanent decision, and it’s essential to know all the facts before choosing this option.
Physical Side Effects and Risks of Abortion
Abortion comes with certain physical side effects. Both medical and surgical abortions will cause bleeding and cramping. Medical abortion, also known as the abortion pill, can also cause:
While risks are rarer, they’re also more severe. The risks of a medical abortion include:
- Incomplete abortion, which can lead to an infection
- An ongoing pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
- Heavy and prolonged bleeding
- Digestive system discomfort
Surgical abortion risks include:
- Uterine perforation or scarring (which could lead to infertility and painful menstrual periods)
- Cervical injury
- Infection (which could become life-threatening)
Mental Health Risks of Abortion
While some women feel immediate relief after an abortion, many others experience mental health effects. It’s important to be aware of these potential effects, especially if you’re feeling pressured into an abortion (as this can make you more likely to face these mental health struggles).
3. Review Your Medical History
Medical abortion is only FDA-approved if your pregnancy is under 10 weeks old, and it’s also not recommended if you’re on certain medications or have a history of specific medical conditions. Some of these include:
- Are too far along in your pregnancy. You shouldn’t attempt a medical abortion if you’ve been pregnant for more than nine weeks (after the start of your last period). Some types of medical abortion aren’t done after seven weeks of pregnancy.
- Have an intrauterine device (IUD) currently in place.
- Have a suspected pregnancy outside of the uterus. This is called ectopic pregnancy.
- Have certain medical conditions. These include bleeding disorders; certain heart or blood vessel diseases; severe liver, kidney, or lung disease; or an uncontrolled seizure disorder.
- Take a blood thinner or certain steroid medicines.
- Can’t keep follow-up visits to your provider or don’t have access to emergency care.
- Have an allergy to the medicine used.
Facing an unplanned pregnancy can feel scary, but you’re not alone in this—and you have options. We’re here for you with free pregnancy resources, including limited ultrasounds, that can help you feel confident to make a pregnancy decision. Contact us today. All appointments are free and confidential.
*The Open Door Pregnancy Center believes you have a right to accurate information from a resource that will not profit from your pregnancy decision. We are an alternative resource that does not perform or refer for abortion. The information on this website is for educational purposes only.