Till what month is abortion safe or legal?
- Abortion of a child just because its a baby girl... is highly deplorable, illegal and must not be done.
- Otherwise medically, abortion is considered safe within first 2.5 months of pregnancy.
- Abortion should only be performed in exceptional cases when there is a threat to mother's life.
Ways of abortion
What are various abortion ways? Abortion may happen in any of the following ways:
- Induced abortion (Intentional abortion of undeveloped embryo/ foetus) can be done in 2 ways:
a) Non Surgical medical abortion is termination of pregnancy through combination of PILLS.
b) Surgical abortion is termination of pregnancy surgically by removing embryo/ foetus from uterus.
- Spontaneous abortion due to accidental suffering/natural causes. Also called 'unintentional miscarriage'.
Surgical or Non-Surgical?
Which method is better? Surgical abortion or Non-Surgical abortion?
- Both surgical and non-surgical methods of abortion are reasonably safe and effective.
- Non-surgical abortion:
a) Usually leads to heavy & painful bleeding which may last from 10-14 days.
b) Non surgical abortion requires at least 2 sittings (pill dosages).
- Surgical abortion:
a) Pain and bleeding is comparatively less in surgical abortion which is up to 5 days.
b) Patient is discharged within 3-4 hrs in case of surgical abortion.
- The woman should take a decision considering her preference, lifestyle and comfort level.
- Do not take any medication/ pill without consulting your gynae for non-surgical abortion.
Risks and After Effects
What are some risks or 'after effects' after an abortion?
- Incomplete abortion: Part(s) of foetus/baby may be left inside uterus which may lead to cramping or infection.
- Surgical instrument injury: Improper surgical instrument usage may lead to perforation- injury to uterus/cervix. This may lead to weakness or scar tissue formation.
- Irregular menstrual cycle: Infection after abortion may lead to irregular or prolonged menstrual cycle.
- Inflammation: Chances of pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Haemorrhaging: Excessive discharge of blood, abnormal bleeding or uterine rupture.
- Conceiving inability: Risk of not getting pregnant in future rises in case of complication like uterus perforation.
- Emotional: Not a good experience. May lead to unexpected guilt, emotional distress and sexual dysfunction.
When can one go to work after having an abortion?
- One may be able to resume work within a couple of days but rest is recommended for at least a week.
- End of pregnancy usually leads to physical toll on most of the women.
- It is advisable to take off for few days if your job is 'physically' demanding.
- Women may experience heavy pain and bleeding in case of non-surgical abortion.
- Follow the advice of your doctor as recovery time also varies from person to person.
If I don't tell, will anyone be able to find out that I had an abortion?
- Until you have a medical check-up with a gynecologist, no one can make out about your abortion.
- According to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Law in India, an abortion/health care provider should not disclose your health/abortion information to anybody else without your permission.
What precautions should be taken after an abortion?
- Avoid bending, lifting weight, strenuous exercise & stretching muscles for at least 10 to 15 days.
- Avoid eating & drinking dairy products (as it dilutes the effect of Doxycycline given during abortion).
- Avoid sitting in a bath tub, swimming and also refrain from doing intercourse until bleeding stops.
- Do not skip any medication/antibiotics to prevent infection as recommended by certified doctor.
- In future, be careful and have safe sex. Go for contraceptive methods (pills, condom) to avoid unplanned pregnancy and hence abortion. For family planning / birth control options: Click here
Do I need my parents consent, if I am below 18 yrs?
- Yes. As per Medical Termination of Pregnancy (MTP) Act, 1971- permission in writing is required from parent or guardian, in case you are below 18 years and want to opt for abortion.
- Any person who wilfully fails to comply with the requirements may be liable to be punished with fine which may extend to one thousand rupees.
What are some reasons for spontaneous abortion (Miscarriage)?
- Chromosomal abnormality: Sometimes, miscarriage happens due to abnormal development of embryo/baby.
- Diseases/complications during pregnancy: Diabetes, Thyroid or High Blood Pressure may be a cause.
- Exposure: Prolonged exposure to radiation, environmental pollutants or toxins.
- Lifestyle: Severe physical stress, smoking or alcohol abuse are known to contribute towards miscarriage.
How to avoid a miscarriage / spontaneous abortion?
- Avoid jerks. Do not lift heavy items. Eat healthy food and drink plenty of water.
- Get adequate rest, sleep for 8 hours each night and avoid stress.
- Stay away from alcohol, cigarette smoke, pesticides and paints fumes.
- Avoid harmful radiations from microwaves also which may lead to termination of pregnancy.
Will insurance pay for an abortion?
- No. Insurance schemes for abortion are almost non- existent in India.
- You will have to bear all the expenses yourself without any reimbursement.