Abortion and the Long-Term Effects

Are you considering having an abortion after finding out you’re unexpectedly pregnant? We understand the headspace you may be in – afraid, angry, confused, etc. You are not alone.

Before deciding on abortion, you may want to consider all the risks and long-term effects this procedure has on women and their physical and mental health. You deserve to be fully informed so you can make a confident decision for your future.

How Does Abortion Work?

There are two main types of abortion: medical and surgical abortion. Both work to terminate an existing pregnancy, using two very different methods. Medical abortion (also known as the abortion pill method) uses two drugs – Mifepristone and Misoprostol, taken 24-48 hours from each other. 

The process of surgical abortion includes dilation of the cervix and a small suction tube inserted into the uterus. The suction device is used to remove the pregnancy from the uterus. Surgical abortion requires anesthesia and varies on procedure type, depending on how far along you are. 

Physical Side Effects/Risks of Abortion

There are physical side effects to medical abortion including vaginal bleeding, nausea, abdominal cramping, and more. Some of the common physical risks of medical abortion include:

  • Incomplete abortion, which may need to be followed by surgical abortion
  • An ongoing unwanted pregnancy if the procedure doesn’t work
  • Heavy and prolonged bleeding
  • Infection
  • Fever
  • Digestive system discomfort

Surgical abortion also comes with serious side effects like excessive bleeding and infection of the uterus. Other risks of surgical abortion include:

  • Damage to the womb or cervix
  • Uterine perforation (accidentally putting a hole in the uterus with one of the instruments used)
  • Scarring of the inside of the uterus
  • Reaction to the medicines or anesthesia, such as problems breathing
  • Not removing all of the tissue, requiring another procedure

Long-Term Effects on Mental Health 

Many women suffer from both the physical and mental effects of abortion. According to a study by the National Library of Medicine for women after a miscarriage or abortion, ‘A significant number of those experiencing a reproductive loss exhibit signs of anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder.’ 

This study reveals that there was often a delay in mental effects, as women may not experience them until a couple of months later – or longer. Other mental health conditions mentioned attributed to reproductive loss, including subsequent relationship problems, substance misuse, and suicidal ideation.

Though abortion may seem like a quick fix to an unplanned pregnancy – it comes with serious and long-term effects. 

To learn more about your pregnancy options, talk to our knowledgeable team at Life Choices today. Confirm your pregnancy to determine what options you’re eligible for with a free and confidential pregnancy confirmation appointment

Same-day appointments are available! We are here for you.