Can An Abortion Prevent Future Pregnancies
Women procure abortions for a number of reasons which may be personal or medical. The procedure involves stopping a pregnancy from going on to full term. However, a woman who chooses an abortion may still want to have children later in life, when she is ready for it. If you have had an abortion and are considering getting pregnant, you could be having one question in your mind: Can an abortion affect future pregnancies? Let us find out the answer.
Can You Get Pregnant After Abortion
Yes. You can get pregnant after having an abortion. This is true for both surgical and medical abortions.
If you have recently had an abortion and would like to prevent future pregnancies, know that you can still get pregnant immediately following the procedure. Therefore, its important to make sure to use protection the next time you have sex.
If you have had an abortion recently but still want to conceive sometime in the future, know that an abortion will not impact your chances of having a normal pregnancy at another point in your life.
What Is A Medical Abortion
The abortion pill, often referred to as a medical abortion is actually a series of two different pills.
The first pill, Mifepristone, blocks the hormones necessary for the pregnancy to continue. The second pill, Misoprostol, stimulates the uterus to cramp and bleed so that the embryo is forced to leave the womans body .
Mifepristone Oral is an abortion pill prescribed during the first seven to ten weeks of pregnancy. It is a drug that blocks the effects of progesterone, one of the hormones necessary for the uterus ability to support a pregnancy.
To complete the process, Misoprostol is a medication that causes the uterus to contract and expel the embryo, embryonic sac, and lining of the uterus, ultimately removing the developing fetus. This process usually takes 24-48 hours and is often accompanied by heavy bleeding and strong uterine cramping.
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Tips For A Healthy Pregnancy After Abortion
What should you do if youd like to have a child after having an abortion in the past?
While abortion does carry many significant risks, there are steps you can take to increase your odds of a healthy pregnancy. Its important to give your body time to heal, take steps to avoid infection and other complications, and see your doctor before becoming pregnant again.
- Avoid getting pregnant for at least 6 months after having an abortion. Abstaining from sexual intercourse is the best way to avoid pregnancy.
- If youd like to try to conceive, see your gynecologist for tests and possible treatments to improve your chances of becoming pregnant and carrying the baby to term.
Are you coping with the emotional effects of a recent abortion?
Contact us at Mosaic PHC. We offer resources to help you find hope and healing after abortion.
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Tips For Successful Pregnancy After Abortion
1. Consult Your Physician
If you are still worried and wondering in your mind, “Can an abortion prevent future pregnancies?” your healthcare provider can help you understand the risks associated with having an abortion and give you tips that will help you to conceive in the future.
Your doctor can conduct physical examinations to make sure that your uterus and cervix have not suffered any damage, and evaluate what impact any previous infection may have on your ability to conceive.
2. Healthy Lifestyle
Maintaining a healthy diet is critical to the proper functioning of your reproductive organs. Eating a well-balanced diet with regular servings of green leafy vegetables and fruits will boost the efficient functioning of your body. Keep off unhealthy habits such as smoking, drinking and excessive intake of caffeine.
3. Give Yourself Time to Recover
Allowing your body to recover after an abortion or a trauma increases your chances of conceiving again. The recommended waiting period is usually six to eight weeks within which you should take prescribed vitamins and mineral supplements.
4. Have Sex Frequently
Engaging in regular sexual intercourse is a good way to increase your chances of conception. However, you and your partner should take a three to six day rest period to allow your partners sperm count to increase after a period of rigorous sexual activity.
5. Take Advantage of Your Ovulation Time
6. Load Up on Folic Acid
7. See a Specialist
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How Soon Can I Conceive After An Abortion
Are you thinking, When can I conceive after an abortion? Well tell you. As soon as ovulation resumes after the abortion, you can conceive again. If you havent used birth control measures, in rare cases, you can get pregnant within 7-10 days if you are ovulating. But, this is not recommended as the body needs to heal itself.
Doctors recommend waiting for a minimum of 3 months before trying for a baby again. This is to ensure the safety and well-being of both the mother and the baby.
If you had a surgical abortion or a D& C procedure, your gynaecologist will advise you to wait for at least a month to allow the uterus to heal. If your abortion was in the second or third trimester, the doctor may recommend waiting longer, so that youre well-rested. You may also be prescribed folic acid supplements to reduce the chances of neural tube defects in the next pregnancy. If there were no medical complications, then pregnancy after an abortion is safe.
When Are Pregnancy Tests Accurate After An Abortion
Shortly after an abortion, a pregnancy test may give a false-positive result. This occurs because the body still contains significant levels of the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin .
While hCG levels tend to fall quickly after an abortion, they can take several days or weeks to return to baseline.
Usually, a home pregnancy test shows an accurate negative result 3 weeks after the end of a pregnancy.
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Are There Any Risks Associated With Getting Pregnant After An Abortion
The risks associated with getting pregnant after an abortion are minimal and can depend on the type of abortion you had.
For medical abortions , the risk of having complications with future pregnancies is very low. This means that your chances of experiencing complications like giving birth prematurely, giving birth to a low-weight baby, having an ectopic pregnancy, and losing your pregnancy are all low.
For surgical abortions , the risk of future pregnancy complications is slightly higher. One study found that women who underwent a dilation and evacuation procedure , may be at an increased risk of having a premature delivery with a low birth weight baby.
To avoid complications associated with surgical abortions, doctors often recommend that patients have an abortion as early in their pregnancy as possible so that they can have a medical abortion.
Side Effects Of Abortion
For various medical and personal reasons, women around the world may turn to abortion as a solution. These include teenage pregnancy, relationship problems, financial constraints, and others. However, there are also many dangers and risks of abortion. Abortion complications can cause damage to a womans physical, mental, and emotional health.
So, what is abortion, what are the possible reasons why women abort their babies, and what are the potential side effects of abortion? Read these abortion facts to find out!
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Abortion And Future Pregnancy Complications
Complications from abortion may make it harder to conceive and carry a pregnancy to term.
- Infertility. International statistics reveal that many women who have abortions experience infertility.
- Miscarriage. Abortion may leave scar tissue in the uterus, making it harder for a fertilized egg to implant and grow. This interferes with placenta development and makes it harder to retain the pregnancy, increasing the risk of miscarriage.
- Risk to your baby. Pregnancy termination may increase the risk of premature birth and low birth weight in future pregnancies.
Other Reproductive Health Outcomes
Long-term risks of one abortion on secondary infertility, second-trimester spontaneous abortion, preterm delivery, and low birthweight were comprehensively reviewed in 198210 and updated in 1990.14 These reviews formed the basis for Surgeon General Everett Koop’s conclusion that the physical sequelae of abortion were no different than those found in women who carried pregnancy to term or who had never been pregnant.15 This conclusion is valid for surgical abortion by vacuum aspiration in the first trimester . Specifically, there are:
- No significant risks for secondary infertility.16,17 However, if the abortion is infected or complicated by pre-existing and nontreated STDs, risks of secondary infertility, ectopic pregnancy, and fetal loss increase. Therefore, it is critically important to provide prophylactic antibiotics with the surgery to protect against pelvic infection.18
- No significant risks for spontaneous abortion or preterm or low birthweight delivery in the next pregnancy. A woman’s first birth carries a greater risk of being preterm or of low birthweight when compared with her second birth, irrespective of whether the first birth followed a surgical abortion.
Other pregnancy outcomes reported in the literature include placenta previa20 and neonatal sepsis21 after one or more induced abortions. These studies report small but statistically significant elevated ORs , but neither controlled for STDs.
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How Abortion Affects Your Reproductive System
Abortion is a complicated surgical procedure that may cause significant side effects and permanent changes to your body.
- Abortion may scar your uterine wall and damage the cervix. These injuries may cause complications in future pregnancies.
- Abortion may reduce your level of progesterone, a hormone that is necessary for fetal development.
- Abortion may cause gynecological disorders which make it harder to get pregnant and carry a child to term.
Your Questions About Pregnancy After Abortion Answered By An Ob
Does having an abortion curse future plans for a family? Will it affect chances of a healthy pregnancy? Here’s everything you need to know about getting pregnant post-abortion.
It’s been fifteen years since I had an abortion. Since then, I earned my college degree as an All-American Track & Field athlete. I’ve traveled to countless new cities, one of which I now call home. I’ve gained invaluable professional experience to further my career. And I married someone who I look forward to parenting with.
I made a decision Ill never regret. I chose my body, my health, my life. And though I wasnt ready to be a mother as a teenager, I now am. According to my doctor, I’m in prime condition to conceive again. But are all people who have abortions in the same boat as me? Am I the norm when it comes to being able to get pregnant after an abortion, or am I an anomaly?
The good news is we no longer have to question whether or not abortion methods recommended by healthcare professionals are safe. The four forms of abortion are considered safe and effective procedures, according to evidence-based, non-partisan research produced by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. But to learn more about getting pregnant again after having an abortion, I spoke with OB-GYN Shamsah Amersi, M.D.
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What Is The Outlook For Fertility Following Abortion
According to ACOG, having an abortion doesnt generally affect your ability to get pregnant in the future. It also does not increase the risks for pregnancy complications if you do choose to get pregnant again.
Many doctors recommend using some type of birth control immediately after abortion because its possible a woman can get pregnant again when she starts ovulating.
Doctors will also usually recommend a woman refrain from sexual intercourse for a certain time period after an abortion to allow the body time to heal.
If you do have difficulty getting pregnant after an abortion, its important to consider some of the other factors that could potentially affect your fertility, since a past abortion isnt likely to cause problems conceiving. These factors can also affect fertility:
If you are experiencing problems getting pregnant, talk to your gynecologist. They can advise you on lifestyle steps that may help, as well as recommend a fertility specialist who can help you identify potential underlying causes and possible treatment options.
Pregnancy After An Abortion
Returning to our major concern, i.e. becoming a mother after going for an abortion. The answer to this is a clear YES! It will be surprising for you to know that a woman after her abortion can conceive again within a period of only two weeks. Here are some tips for you to know the best time to conceive. However, this depends on her menstrual cycle. Other factors, including the gestational age at which she had undergone an abortion, length of her menstrual cycle, the method used for abortion, etc. are among the others.
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The Committees Selection Criteria
The committees literature search strategy for this chapter is provided in Appendix D. The bibliographies of retrieved articles were reviewed to find additional relevant research. Each identified article was reviewed to determine whether the study met the criteria listed below. The findings reported in this chapter draw solely on studies that met these criteria:
- for the study population, there was objective medical record or patient registry documentation of a prior induced abortion
- the study population was compared with a control group of women with no documented abortion history
- the analysis controlled for mental health status prior to the abortion
Suggested Citation:The Safety and Quality of Abortion Care in the United States
Make Sure Youre Ovulating Regularly
The most efficient way to get pregnant is by tracking ovulation and planning sex accordingly. This is especially true if you have recently had an abortion, due to the fact that it may take a few weeks or months for your cycle and ovulation patterns to return to normal.
There are several ways that you can monitor ovulation over time in order to get to know your cycle better. A few of the most common methods include:
- The Calendar Method where you simply track the dates of your period over time in order to calculate your day of ovulation .
- The Basal Body Temperature Method where you take your temperature at the same time each morning in order to detect the 0.5°F increase in temperature that typically happens 12 hours after ovulation.
- Ovulation Predictor Kits where you take an at-home test that is similar to a pregnancy test, but instead of testing for the pregnancy hormone hCG, it tests for luteinizing hormone which surges right before ovulation.
- Comprehensive Hormone Tracking where you use a hormone tracking system like Mira to accurately monitor your individual cycle and predict ovulation.
It may take some time to figure out the best method for you. However, with a bit of patience, you will be able to better understand the patterns of your cycle and successfully plan a pregnancy following an abortion.
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Can Any Of These Potential Complications Affect Future Fertility
Of the potential abortion complications listed above, Asherman syndrome and infection are the only ones that can, again, rarely affect your fertility. Scarring from Asherman syndrome can make it harder to conceive or carry a pregnancy to term. If this is the case, your doctor can remove the scar tissue and insert a balloon that allows your uterus to heal. Once the balloon is removed and youre healed, you should be able to conceive.
Additionally, waiting too long to treat an infection in your pelvis or reproductive organs can increase your risk of infertility or ectopic pregnancy. Rarely, however, do infections progress this far before they are detected and treated.
Could An Abortion Increase The Risk Of Problems In A Subsequent Pregnancy
Generally, elective abortion isnt thought to cause fertility issues or complications in future pregnancies. However, some studies suggest a possible link between pregnancy termination and an increased risk of premature birth and low birth weight.
Risks may depend on the type of abortion performed.
Medical abortion Medication is taken in early pregnancy to abort the fetus. Medical abortions do not appear to increase the risk of future pregnancy complications.
Surgical abortion A surgical procedure removes the fetus from the uterus through the vagina. Its typically done using suction and a sharp, spoon-shaped tool . Rarely, this can cause scarring of the uterine wall , which may make it difficult to get pregnant. Women who have multiple surgical abortion procedures may also have more risk of trauma to the cervix.
Theres also a very small risk to your fertility and future pregnancies if you develop a womb infection during the procedure thats not treated promptly. The infection could spread to your fallopian tubes and ovaries, known as pelvic inflammatory disease .
If you think you may have any of these symptoms or have any concerns, contact your primary care provider to ensure you are healthy after an abortion.
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Abortion Affect: Trying To Conceive After Miscarriage
You can become fertile again two weeks before the regular menses start after miscarriage. This is possible if you have not had any health problems affecting your fertility.
Many doctors ask for at least two complete menstrual cycles to wait until after pregnancy to resume pregnancy. This is so that your body gets time to regain strength. However, due to your miscarriage, the wait may be longer, depending on your age and health.
Some women find that starting a re-conception effort helps them recover from the grief of their infants death. At the same time, some women are not emotionally ready for second pregnancy for a long time. In such a situation, do not put pressure on yourself and do what you feel is right.
When you are ready to try again for pregnancy, you will be comforted to know that most women give birth to a healthy baby in the future.
In the meantime, it can be difficult for you to recover from abortion, so you have to be patient and not rush into anything.
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Your husband will also need time to come out of this misery, as well as if you have older children, they will also be sad for it. Every persons way of mourning is different, so all of you take the time to overcome this sorrow.