Abortion made easy. That’s how the abortion pill is promoted. The idea of a non-surgical procedure is less invasive for sure but a medical abortion isn’t as simple as it sounds. Here’s what you need to know before you decide.
Let’s start by clearing up any confusion about the Morning After Pill and The Abortion Pill.
They are not the same.
It’s important to know that The Morning After Pill or Plan B as it is sometimes called, will not stop a pregnancy that’s already in progress. It’s really just an extra dose of birth control hormones taken as emergency contraception after you’ve had unprotected sex or if your birth control method has failed. The Morning After Pill delays or stops ovulation and stops fertilization before the egg is implanted in the uterus. The Morning After Pill won’t stop a pregnancy that has already started.
What About The Abortion Pill?
Unlike the Morning After Pill, medical abortion or the Abortion Pill is taken after conception up until 10 weeks of pregnancy. It’s really a two-step process that stops a pregnancy from growing and then helps your body to expel the fetal tissue.
Mifepristone is the first medication taken that blocks the hormones necessary for the pregnancy to develop. Nausea and vomiting can occur after you’ve taken the first tablet. Cramping and bleeding usually follow within four hours of taking the first dose.
The second medication, Misoprostol is taken once bleeding and cramping have begun and will help your body to push out the fetus and placenta. There can be heavy bleeding and clots depending on the stage of pregnancy. The closer you are to 10 weeks, the more severe the cramping, bleeding and clotting will occur, as well as the likelihood you will recognize the shape of the embryo as you pass the pregnancy.
Medical abortion usually takes up to 48 hours to complete although each woman is different. It’s not uncommon for women to experience some bleeding up to 3 weeks after a medical abortion. Notify the doctor if heavy, abnormal bleeding occurs, enough to soak two pads within an hour for any length of time or if clots are abnormally large like the size of an apple or an orange.
Medical abortions should be done under the care of your healthcare provider. In rare instances, infections can occur. The first dose should be taken in the presence of a doctor. Women may take the second dose at home and remain in contact with the doctor by phone. A follow-up visit to your doctor is required to determine if the abortion is completed. A small percentage of women may need to have a surgical procedure if all the fetal tissue hasn’t evacuated the uterus within two weeks of the abortion.
How will you know if you are eligible for a medical abortion?
It All Starts With an Ultrasound. Options Can Do One for Free!
If you are considering having a medical abortion you will need an ultrasound before the medication can be prescribed by your doctor or clinician. The reason you need an ultrasound is that the abortion pill is only effective up until 10 weeks of pregnancy. If you are further along, it won’t work. It’s necessary for you to get an exact reading on how many weeks pregnant you are, the size of the fetus and to make sure the pregnancy isn’t ectopic in order to determine if the abortion pill is an appropriate option for you.
Going through with medical abortion is a big decision. Many women are conflicted and want to be sure of their decision before they show up at the abortion clinic or at their doctor’s office to start the process. Abortion at any stage also has emotional and psychological side effects to consider.
If you are seeking clarity, having an ultrasound before you start the abortion process may be just the right step for you. You can find out the gestational age of your pregnancy that will have a huge impact on your decision and you can talk over your concerns with someone who really cares and who won’t judge you. Although you will receive an ultrasound with the abortion provider, the cost of the ultrasound will be calculated into the cost of the abortion. Only a pregnancy support center like Options will give you an ultrasound free of charge before you begin the abortion process.
Don’t wait to schedule your appointment with Options. We can verify your pregnancy on the first visit and schedule you to come back for a free ultrasound so you can make a timely, informed choice. Simply put, we’re the best place around to process your pregnancy decision in the early weeks of your pregnancy.
Options for Women is not an abortion provider or an abortion referral service.
Coming to Options when you have an unwanted pregnancy can be like putting on a pair of polarized sunglasses.
Polarized sunglasses reduce glare and discomfort from the sun’s rays. The lenses are filtered to make images appear sharper and clearer and to give you a truer perception of color. Polarized lenses can literally make you see things in a new (and better) light. A street covered with dead brown leaves may look ugly and messy in the harsh unfiltered rays of the sun but with polarized lenses, the street will look like a path that is paved in warm, golden light.
Of course, changing your view of your unplanned pregnancy from a catastrophe to a difficulty with which you can cope isn’t as easy as putting on a pair of sunglasses, but Options will help you to see your situation through a lens of empowerment instead of crisis so you can confidently deal with what lies ahead.
When you first realize you’re pregnant, reality can seem harsh, confusing and messy. Things can look so hopeless when you perceive them through the lens of shock, fear and crisis.
Even though a crisis is a temporary state that will eventually pass, when you are in the thick of a crisis, time stops and you feel stuck. Your vision for your life appears distorted. Instead of the best light, you see the worst. You find it difficult to think clearly much less see what you should do next. It may be impossible for you to look at things in any other way.
When you come to Options, we’ll help you to find clarity and peace about your decision with information about your body, your health, and your pregnancy, without pressure. You can relax and gain perspective until your vision for your life is clear and true.
Options will give you a break from your pregnancy crisis in an environment designed for your comfort with a staff who really cares about what you are going through and who will pay attention to you, never minimizing your feelings.
You will receive medical attention and compassionate navigation to services that will meet your exact needs.
No one can make your pregnancy decision for you; however, choosing doesn’t have to be a lonely and stressful experience. Research shows that extreme stress negatively affects the brain and the nervous system. Making a choice under stress blurs perception and seldom leads to a confident choice. At Options, you can DE-stress while gaining a sharper view of your pregnancy and the ways your decision will impact your life.
Although, we can’t promise you’ll receive the x-ray vision of a super hero when you come to our center, you just might leave Options feeling like one.
Making a decision about who and when to call when you think you might be pregnant can be confusing. Here are the top 10 reasons why Options for Women should be first on your list.
- When you’ve missed your period: we’ll give you a nurse administered pregnancy test for free.
- When your periods are irregular: we’ll give you a free ultrasound for accurate dating.*
- When you have no health insurance: we’ll give you the verification you need to sign up.
- When considering abortion: you’ll learn the stage of pregnancy for an informed choice.
- When you’re undecided: we’ll provide a comforting setting to review your options without stress or judgment.
- When you need someone to talk to: we’re all ears. We ‘ll speak less and listen more.
- When you need support: we’ll get you connected to resources and services.
- When you need early pregnancy care: we’ll jumpstart prenatal care & refer you to a provider.
- When you have other issues impacting your pregnancy: we’ll listen & help.
- When you feel afraid: our nurse and advocates will support and guide you to feel empowered.
Your are not alone.
- free ultrasounds given on second visit
At Options, when we meet with women who come to us for help with their pregnancy decisions, we believe it is important for us to talk less and listen more. We never assume we know what our clients need or want from us. We wait until they feel comfortable enough to share their stories and to communicate their needs.
Every woman has a story.
Most women come here as a first step in coping with the news that they are pregnant. There’s so much to figure out. They may need verification from a pregnancy test or a free first-trimester ultrasound to help decide their next move.
It’s true, we offer those services to all women who enroll as our clients including a lot more awesome support, but as many of our former clients have told us, the best thing that we do is to listen.
Maybe you are someone who doesn’t know what to do about your pregnancy.
Maybe you have a lot more to figure out than how far along you are or if you even want to carry and give birth.
Maybe you don’t know where to begin your pregnancy journey or maybe you are not sure how your pregnancy story will end.
When your story branches off into the unknown, we show up to listen – if you want to share. The medical data you received at Options in the form of pregnancy verification, due date, and ultrasound results are greatly valued because it is your information. How you feel about your pregnancy is equally valued, though often underestimated. Feelings can be complex, not only affecting your pregnancy outcome but also your health, your well being and your future.
Options respects your own ideas and concerns about your pregnancy and the circumstances surrounding you. We’ll never jump in to tell you what to do but we will respectfully listen as you share information that will help you to create your own action plan. We pay attention to what is important to you; only then can we help and only if you want it.
Sometimes talking about a problem out loud with someone who won’t judge or interrupt you can bring peace and clarity. Keeping fears and anxieties trapped inside can cause negative thoughts that turn into emotional suffering and mental anguish. Sharing with someone who cares can be freeing, and can bring relief in knowing that you are not alone.
Even if the only thing we do at Options is to listen, you will leave here knowing that you have been heard.
“Having someone who listens is a great gift, but to be truly heard is a treasure.”
― Tatjana Urbic
Any woman who has white-knuckled a home pregnancy test knows that in an instant, her life could change forever. This goes double if the pregnancy is unplanned.
Maybe that woman is you.
Zoning in on the positive results, you’re not thinking about cells dividing in your uterus and hormonal changes. For you, it’s more about the questions multiplying in your mind and the wide range of emotions you are feeling. Instinctively you know that there’s more at play than biology.
Your pregnancy, whether you choose to carry or not, is a primary health concern, that needs attention, but you may have other needs besides medical ones that will influence your pregnancy decision, and that will also affect you physically, emotionally, socially and economically.
You are more than a walking womb with a baby growing inside.
Options for Women is a pregnancy support center that offers all pregnant women help with medical care at the early stages of pregnancy while considering their options for the future.
But that’s not all.
Our integrated care approach addresses you as a whole person to include early prenatal intervention as well as attention and care to all other areas of your life that will be affected by your unplanned pregnancy.
We begin with pregnancy verification and a free first-trimester ultrasound to jumpstart prenatal care or to provide you with decision making support as you consider your next move. Our navigators link you to vital services such as health insurance and prenatal care providers. We will help you get the care you need based on your individual health needs and desires.
Our integrated care approach considers your feelings about your pregnancy and what matters to you during this time. At your request, we’ll review all your options with you and listen to each of your concerns. We offer abortion education, parenting options, and if desired, adoption and parenting support.
Do you have trouble with anxiety? Housing concerns? How will the pregnancy impact your finances? -Your relationship with the father of the baby? Your education, -your job? Experiencing difficulty with just one of these issues can cause stress. We’ll help you to examine the stressors in your life and to find ways to limit them during and after pregnancy.
We’ll help you to identify or to create a social support system and a circle of trust. It’s important to your overall health to know that you are not alone during times when you feel vulnerable and at risk.
Do you have mental health concerns or substance abuse issues? Domestic troubles at home? No shame. We will navigate you towards the services that will make a difference in these areas of your life. We’ve built bridges in the community for you to cross with confidence.
Our pathways to integrated care begin with our navigators who are trained to listen and help. They, together with you, and with our nurse manager will help you design an integrated care plan that is just right for you.
There are so many factors that affect overall health especially during pregnancy, and not all of them are physical. We want you to know that at Options for Women our specialty is you, all of you – not just pregnant part.