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If you are unexpectedly pregnant, one of the first options you’ll discover when researching online or talking to friends is getting an abortion. If you’re unfamiliar with the process or how it works, it’s important to do your research so you understand the process of the procedure and any potential risks.

Almost half of the pregnancies in the US are unplanned, so if you find yourself dealing with an unexpected pregnancy, you are not alone in your situation. It’s important to research the different options (abortion and others) and make an informed, confident decision for you and your pregnancy.

Potential Mental Health Risks of Abortion

Any medical procedure will entail some type of risk, but the mental health risks of abortion are often underreported. There are several recent studies that reveal the possibility for increased mental health issues for women after having an abortion. This is not every woman, and for some it is immediate while others it is more long-term. For example, One source reported that “10% of women were traumatized six months after the induced abortion,” while other women experienced anxiety and depression up to two to five years later.

Some potential side-effects after an abortion include:

Long-Term Side Effects of Abortion

Depending on the stage of pregnancy will likely determine the type of abortion you’re eligible for (medication vs. surgical abortion).

Risks associated with a surgical abortion, which occur usually in the second trimester, can cause uterine scarring, which can potentially make it difficult to get pregnant again or cause complications in future pregnancies, such as a premature delivery which can cause birth defects in infants.

Short-Term Side-Effects

According to the Mayo Clinic, potential immediate 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

If you choose a surgical abortion, there are other risks such as scar tissue or perforation of the uterus or other short-term symptoms such as bleeding, cramping, etc.

Your Best Next Steps

If you are still researching so you can make the best decision, it’s best to talk to an expert who can give you medically accurate information. Here at New Hope Center, we have a professional, knowledgeable staff who are happy to answer any questions you have.

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