3 Things Needed Before an Abortion
In some ways, an unplanned pregnancy is like an unexpected medical diagnosis. You’re shocked, this may affect plans you’ve made for your future, and you’re not sure what steps to take.
If you are considering an elective abortion, taking the following health screenings is important to ensure you’re doing everything possible to protect your reproductive health.
Lab-Quality Pregnancy Testing
Taking a lab-quality pregnancy test is the first step before anything else. Instead of relying on common pregnancy symptoms such as nausea, fatigue, or even a missed period, it’s important to verify your pregnancy with a pregnancy test.
At First Care, we provide free lab-quality urine pregnancy testing that is 99% accurate. You can be confident in your results.
We can also help you determine the best pregnancy test time.
An ultrasound is one of the most important health screenings you can take if you suspect you are currently pregnant. This scan can provide you with the following information:
- Age of the pregnancy
- Viability of the pregnancy
- Location of the pregnancy
This information is vital because the age of the pregnancy can affect your eligibility for a medication abortion (which is FDA-approved up to 70 days of gestational age of the pregnancy).
The viability of the pregnancy will determine whether or not you’ve miscarried. Up to 1 in 5 pregnancies end in miscarriage, so it’s important to assess your pregnancy’s status to know whether or not you’re still eligible for an abortion procedure.
Additionally, an ultrasound gives you the location of the pregnancy, so you know whether or not it is ectopic. An ectopic pregnancy is outside the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube, and can rupture if not treated immediately. An ectopic pregnancy is not eligible for an abortion.
It is still possible to be an asymptomatic carrier of an STD, which means you may not have symptoms. If you have an untreated STD and undergo an elective abortion, this could increase your risk for complications.
At First Care, we offer no-cost STD testing and can recommend treatment options for you.
No one should feel like they have to face an unplanned pregnancy alone, so let us walk alongside you. We offer no-cost pregnancy services such as complimentary ultrasounds and options consultations.
Contact us today to schedule your appointment! We are here for you.Learn More
Is Adoption or Abortion Right for Me?
If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, you may be scrambling to look at what your options are, and weighing which is the right one for you.
First, take a deep breath and try to take some of the immediate pressure off of yourself. You have time to research, do your due diligence, and come up with a plan that makes the most sense for your situation.
If you have already determined that parenting is not an option for you right now, then this leaves adoption and abortion. Read this blog to gain more information about each option.
What Do I Need to Know About Abortion?
Surgical Abortion Risks
Anyone who is considering a medical procedure deserves to know if there is any type of risk, no matter how small.
The Mayo Clinic lists the following as potential risks of surgical abortion:
- Perforation of the uterus
- Damage to the cervix
- Scar tissue on the uterine wall
Medical Abortion Risks
Medical abortion is FDA-approved for pregnancies under 10 weeks along. There are some potential risks to be aware of as well. The Mayo Clinic lists the following:
- 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
Psychological Impacts of Abortion
Abortion’s impact on mental health depends on the individual woman. Everyone has different reactions, some immediate and some delayed.
While some women might experience feelings of relief, others might experience negative mental health impacts—especially if there is an existing history of mental health issues.
Some potential side effects after an abortion include:
According to one study conducted over a 25-year period, women who have an abortion have higher rates of substance abuse and anxiety.
If you have already undergone an abortion and are experiencing some of these symptoms, please contact our center for no-cost resources to help with post-abortion healing.
Abortion can be expensive procedure without insurance, so it’s important to be aware of the costs upfront. Medication abortion can cost up to $500 and surgical abortion can easily be $1500 or more.
What Do I Need to Know About Adoption?
If you are considering the choice of adoption, then it’s important to be aware of the subset of options that are available within this choice. As the biological parent, there is a lot of autonomy to create an adoption plan that best fits your situation.
Some terms that are helpful to be aware of include:
- Open Adoption– You have an in-person relationship with the child and adoptive family. This makes up the majority of adoptions.
- Closed Adoption– You do not have a relationship with the child or adoptive family, and details about you cannot be disclosed.
- Semi-Open Adoption– You communicate through the adoption agency of your choice to exchange non-identifying information with the adoptive parents.
With multiple types of adoption, you can choose the one that works best for your needs.
Psychological Impacts of Adoption
Even if you decide adoption is the choice for you, it’s important to be aware that it can be hard. It is not always without an impact on your mental health.
With adoption, there is the possibility of developing feelings of loss or grief, although birth mothers may also demonstrate signs of postpartum depression as well.
It does not cost the birth mother any money to make an adoption plan. In many cases, if you choose this option, your pregnancy-related costs can be covered.
Schedule an Appointment
This blog is a helpful starting point, but the options and information can still feel overwhelming.
We offer free appointments at our center and provide space for you to safely ask questions and discuss your options in a pressure-free environment. Contact us today to schedule yours!Learn More
What Are the Signs of an Incomplete Abortion?
If you are curious what an incomplete abortion is, a common misconception is that it is an unsuccessful abortion and the pregnancy is still developing.
However, an incomplete abortion means the pregnancy has been successfully terminated, but the fetus and pregnancy tissue have not been completely expelled. If left untreated, it can develop into a serious infection.
Read the article below, and if you believe you are demonstrating the symptoms of an incomplete abortion, seek medical care immediately.
What Are the Symptoms of an Incomplete Abortion?
According to National Library of Medicine, some of the symptoms include:
- Heavy cramps
- Vaginal bleeding
- Passing of blood clots through the vagina
According to MedLine, heavy bleeding can be some of the most obvious signs. You should seek immediate help if you bleed enough to soak through two thick full-size sanitary pads per hour for two consecutive hours. This can be caused by mifepristone, one of the drugs used in a medication abortion.
How Likely Is an Incomplete Abortion?
The chance of an incomplete abortion does seem to increase according to how far along you are in your pregnancy. According to a study conducted on almost 5,000 induced abortions, an incomplete abortion was the most common complication related to medical abortions greater than twelve weeks.
In Finland, of 24,006 adult participants who underwent a medical abortion, 10.2% experienced an incomplete abortion.
Your health should be your top concern if you are worried that your symptoms match those of an incomplete abortion. Don’t wait to seek medical care, because incomplete abortions can lead to heavy bleeding or severe sepsis, according to the National Library of Medicine.
If you have not yet had an abortion, we recommend first scheduling a limited ultrasound at First Care for no cost. We can verify the age and viability of your pregnancy, and screen for complications like ectopic pregnancy.
We offer complimentary pregnancy services, as well as the opportunity to learn and discuss all of your options. We are here to support you, so contact us today!Learn More
Does the Overturning of Roe v. Wade Affect MN?
With the recent overturning of Roe v. Wade, people are asking a lot of questions about whether abortion is now legal in all 50 states of the U.S. A lot of opinions have been shared as well, leading to misinformation about what is legal and what is not.
If you’re overwhelmed by the opinions or stories that you see in the news or on social media, read the rest of this article to learn how this affects you locally in the state of Minnesota.
What It Means that Roe v. Wade Was Overturned
The importance of Roe v. Wade in 1973 was that it ruled that a woman’s right to an abortion was protected by the U.S. Constitution.
This was challenged and overturned in the recent Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health case. This means that abortion is no longer a federally protected right. This means that each of the 50 states will decide if abortion is legal or not in their own state.
Does Minnesota Currently Grant Abortion Access?
Minnesota has its own state laws regarding abortion. Currently, abortion is legal in our state up to the point of viability (meaning the fetus can live outside of the womb). This is usually later than 20 weeks into the pregnancy.
Will This Limit Women’s Access to Healthcare?
Outside of abortion, the Supreme Court decision does not affect pregnant women. Treatments for high-risk pregnancies, stillbirths, and ectopic pregnancies will still be available to those in need.
What Happens Next?
Abortion access in Minnesota is not being restricted because of the recent ruling. However, it’s important to receive an ultrasound before deciding to get an abortion.
This is because it is possible you could take a medication abortion too late (they are only FDA approved for up to 10 weeks). Without an ultrasound, it’s also impossible to identify if you are experiencing an ectopic pregnancy (which happens to 1 in 50 pregnancies)
First Care offers no-cost ultrasounds as well as other services (such as pregnancy tests and pregnancy support) and even post-abortion care.
We are here to offer resources and support to any pregnant woman in need, so please contact us today to schedule your appointment!Learn More
What Are the Mental Health Effects from Abortion?
Mental health effects after an abortion are not uncommon. With the serious procedure of abortion comes risks and side effects, some that are momentary and some long-lasting.
Some mental effects of abortion could include depression, anxiety, or emotions like loss or grief. In this blog, we will discuss the potential effects of abortion and the symptoms to look out for.
What is Abortion?
There are two main types of abortion: medical abortion and surgical abortion. Abortion works to end an existing pregnancy, whether through a more in-depth surgical procedure or with medication.
Each type has its risks to your mental health as well as physical risks. According to the Mayo Clinic and MedlinePlus, potential physical risks to abortion include incomplete abortion, infection, heavy/prolonged bleeding, damage to the cervix, and more.
The Mental Health Effects Of Abortion
According to the National Institute of Health, women with a history of abortion do experience “elevated rates of mental illness” compared to women who haven’t had an abortion.
Another study done by TFMHA concluded their study with “it is clear that some women do experience sadness, grief, and feelings of loss following termination of a pregnancy, and some experience clinically significant disorders, including depression and anxiety.”
Some women experience a range of emotions after an abortion. Here are symptoms of Post Abortion Stress that you could experience…
- Generalized guilt
- Generalized anxiety
- Denial and repression
- Regret and Remorse
- Specific or generalized sense of grief and loss
Learn More Today
To navigate an unplanned pregnancy, you will first need to confirm how far along you are, learn your viability, and the location of your pregnancy. Confirm your pregnancy today with our free lab-quality urine pregnancy testing and an ultrasound.
Schedule a free and confidential appointment with us today to learn more about your pregnancy choices. Same-day appointments are available!
You are not alone.Learn More
Will My Insurance Pay For My Girlfriend’s Abortion?
Are you worried about finances that come along with you and your partner’s pregnancy options? It can be confusing to understand insurance coverage of abortion and we hope to clear some of that up for you in this blog. Be informed today so you can make a confident decision for your future.
Will Insurance pay for my Girlfriend’s Abortion?
Most of the time, insurance companies will not cover your girlfriend’s abortion if you are not married. Policies are different from state to state, but normally insurance companies will not cover a partner on a policy unless they are a spouse.
If your partner has insurance, it could be covered under her individual insurance company. She will want to check with her insurance company for abortion coverage information, as some insurance companies do cover the cost of an abortion.
Cost of Abortion
If your partner does not have insurance coverage, you will need to pay out-of-pocket costs for abortion. According to the Guttmacher Institute, a first-trimester abortion can cost around $500 in the U.S. A second-trimester abortion normally costs around $1,000, and late-term abortion even higher, around $3,000 or more.
The cost of an abortion varies based on a couple of factors, including…
- How far along you are (determines what abortion procedure you have)
- Where you live (costs vary state to state)
- What abortion provider do you use
The Types of Abortion
Also called the abortion pill method, medical abortion terminates a pregnancy for women up to 10 weeks pregnant. Potential risks of medical abortion include incomplete abortion, heavy/prolonged bleeding, infection, and more.
There are numerous types of surgical abortion procedures, all done at an abortion clinic. Each procedure causes the cervix to be dilated and surgical tools are used to remove the pregnancy. Potential risks of surgical abortion include perforation of the uterus, damage to the cervix, scar tissue on the uterine wall, and infection.
Learn Whether You Qualify
The first step to moving forward with any pregnancy option is understanding what options you’re eligible for. The only way to go about this is with lab-quality pregnancy testing and an ultrasound. An ultrasound reveals how far along your partner is and other vital pregnancy details so you both can move forward.
Schedule a free and confidential appointment today to confirm you and your partner’s pregnancy and learn more about your options.Learn More
If I Choose Abortion, How Will the Decision Impact Me Now and in the Future?
While the gift of time is priceless when making a big decision, it’s also important to consider the various outcomes to the “forever” decisions you are considering making. Be informed and think through all possible outcomes before coming to a decision about abortion. Look at all the details of how this decision could impact you not just today, but a week, year or even 20+ years from now.
Ask Yourself, How Long Will This Crisis Last? Look at Each Possible Outcome.
For example, a woman learns she is pregnant and just started college. The initial thought may be, “How could I go to school and care for a baby?” Abortion may sound like a simple answer. After all, you know women who have had abortions and they seem fine. Life will go on. While life does go on, that’s not the whole picture.
The truth is, abortion related PTSS (post traumatic stress syndrome) is real and affects a large number of women with symptoms often manifesting years after the abortion.
Emotional symptoms include, but are not limited to:
- Low Self-Esteem
- Relationship Issues
- Intimacy Issues
- Thoughts of Self Harm
- Anger Toward Self and Others
There are medical risks* of having an abortion to consider:
- Incomplete Abortion
- Blood Clots in the Uterus
- Heavy Bleeding (hemorrhage)
- Cut or Torn Cervix
- Perforation of the Uterus Wall
- Anesthesia Related Complications
- Painful Cramping
There are also long-term consequences to abortion often not talked about. Many women struggle with infertility, have increased risk of ectopic pregnancy, or struggle with new or increased substance or alcohol abuse.
It’s Important To Have All the Facts When Making a “Forever” Decision.
Now let’s look at the example situation again, you’re in college, pregnant and feel abortion is your only option. Use that gift of time to really think through all options to this forever decision. The crisis you may find yourself in today, may look much more manageable tomorrow. Abortion is a forever decision, one we cannot undo.
Learn From Others
As you make a decision, also consider talking with someone who has experienced abortion and can provide an honest assessment of their experience. At First Care we are happy to put you in touch with our staff or others who have experienced abortion and can answer some of your questions.
Some of the women who have come through our post-abortion healing program have shared their stories with us, including the following thoughts about their abortion decision:
“I wish with all my being, I could take back what I did.”
“They all said I would be okay after…but I’m not.”
“20 years later, I still struggle with great depression and grief.”
“I feel selfish…I feel stupid for getting pregnant in the first place…Before this I never believed in abortion… I have let myself and my family down…”
“After the abortion, I looked in the mirror and didn’t recognize myself.”
“I felt like a monster for killing my child.”
“Looking back at the situation, I could have had my baby and been okay.”
If you are worried about how carrying a pregnancy may impact your future goals and plans for your life, we have staff available to help you talk through those concerns. We also have a variety of resources we can help connect you with as well.
We won’t tell you what to do or not do.
We won’t pressure you.
We will provide a place for you to process and think through the impact of your pregnancy decision now and in the future so you can make a well informed decision that you’ll feel positive about today and in the future.
Schedule an Appointment
Schedule an appointment for Options Counseling to talk with someone about your options.
*taken from “If You are Pregnant” from the Minnesota Department of HealthLearn More
4 Things to Consider Before Scheduling an Abortion
If you are pregnant and are considering abortion, here are four things to consider before making any decision for your pregnancy.
#1: Am I Actually Pregnant?
In the pregnancy center world, “viable” means that baby is implanted in the uterus and there is a heartbeat. Approximately 8-20% of pregnancies end in miscarriage according to Mayo Clinic. It is important to make sure your pregnancy is viable so you don’t have to go through the unnecessary medical procedure of having an abortion.
Here at First Care we offer free lab-quality pregnancy tests and ultrasounds to help you confirm you have a viable pregnancy and determine how far along you are.
#2: What Types of Procedures are Available to Me and What are the Associated Risks?
There are different abortion procedures available depending on how far along you are. Take time to understand the medical procedures and potential risks involved. We recommend that everyone considering abortion read through the Minnesota Department of Health booklet which provides unbiased and factual information on abortion procedures and the potential risks.
#3: How Could an Abortion Impact My Future?
Many women say they experience a deep emotional impact after abortion. For some, feelings of regret or grief come right away. For others, these or other feelings come later in life; during a subsequent pregnancy, or after they have raised their children and are in a new stage of life.
No matter when these emotions impact a woman, it can be difficult to come to terms with the finality that comes with abortion. For many women, it’s not as they hoped; life doesn’t go back to the way it was before the abortion. It is important to think through the long-term effects an abortion could have on your life today and 5, 10 and 20 years from now.
#4: Have I Considered All My Options?
You have three choices when experiencing an unplanned pregnancy: have an abortion, place for adoption, or parent. All options are life changing choices that only you can make. Take time and make an informed decision. Whatever decision you make now will impact your future. Whatever advice you’ve been given, you owe it to yourself and your future to stop and give yourself time to process.
First Care offers free pregnancy options counseling. We will listen to your fears, dreams and uncertainty. You will gain a better understanding of your options and get the support you deserve.
Remember you are not alone!
Whether you choose abortion, parenting or adoption, it is a forever decision that will change your life. We are here to support you as you take that next step. Schedule an appointment to talk with someone today.Learn More
Reasons You May Be Considering Abortion
What are the Reasons Abortion Seems Like the Best Option for Me?
Often in life when we encounter something unexpected our first thought is, “How am I going to make this work?” At First Care, we realize that same reaction applies to an unplanned pregnancy. We recognize an unplanned pregnancy comes with a range of emotions including: shock, emotional numbness, disappointment, fear, anxiety or stress.
When all of these thoughts and feelings get mixed up together, we may look for an escape; a way to erase or undo the situation we find ourselves in. For some women, abortion feels like the only option due to their life circumstances.
Do Any of These Reasons Apply To Your Situation?
- You feel like you do not have everything in order the way you imagined before having children
- You might already have children and adding another child feels too overwhelming
- You may feel like things are too tight financially to have a child
- You may not have adequate housing
- You may be temporarily without a job
- You may want to finish school and believe having a baby would get in the way of your goals
- You feel like you do not have enough support from the baby’s father or your parents/other family members
If you are dealing with even one of the reasons listed above, it’s understandable why abortion may feel like the only way forward. But it’s important to allow yourself time to make a well-informed decision. Put your decision making in perspective.
Honestly Ask Yourself a Few Key Questions That Will Help You Identify Why Abortion Seems Like the Best Way Forward and Help Bring Clarity to Your Decision Making Process:
- Why do I feel abortion is the best option for me?
- Would I consider a different option if my circumstances were different?
- What problem(s) am I hoping abortion will solve?
- Would I feel differently about this decision 5 years from now? 10 years from now?
- What concerns do I have about continuing the pregnancy?
- Have I thoroughly explored all of my options – including adoption and parenting – and know what resources are available to me?
If your circumstances are the primary reason you are considering abortion, know that circumstances can change. Also know there are a variety of community resources and organizations designed to support moms in our community (including our programs here at First Care Pregnancy Center).
Schedule an Appointment
Schedule an appointment today to meet with one of our staff for Options Counseling to process your decision in a confidential and nonjudgmental environment.Learn More