Gynaecologist on tips for safe abortion; dos and don’ts to remember

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abortion is legal in India for married and unmarried women under the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Act 2021 up to 24 weeks. Termination of pregnancy in India has recently been increased from 20 to 24 weeks in special cases. If a woman has decided that abortion is the best option for her, it is important for her to follow safe abortion methods and receive appropriate psychological support. (Also read: Abortion right faces many hurdles in India)

Dr. Niti Kautish, Head of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Fortis Escorts Hospital in Faridabad, talks about the do’s and don’ts for a safe medical abortion.

“Abortion by a qualified medical professional is the safest option. Learn about your abortion options and what each entails. Whichever route you choose, your doctor should explain in detail all the important details of what to expect before, during, and after the procedure. This should cover how it works, the side effects you can expect based on the specifics, for example how far along you are or what pain medication you are receiving, potential risks and complications, and clinic protocols. – for example, if and when to stop eating or drinking the night before, depending on the type of anesthesia you’ll be using,” says Dr. Niti.

A gynecologist says abortions are safe medical procedures as long as they are supervised by a medical professional and carry fewer risks and complications than childbirth.

“Try to get rid of expectations about how you “should” feel about your abortion. There is no right or wrong attitude towards it. It’s really a different experience for each person,” says Dr. Niti.

Here are some tips from Dr. Niti to help you on this journey:

– Get rid of financial stress as much as possible by figuring out how you pay for an abortion. How much your abortion will cost depends heavily on a number of factors, including the type you get, how far along you are, the provider you go to, where you live, and your insurance coverage.

– Talk only to the people you really want, and no one else. When it comes to who you share it with, who you seek support from, whose experience and advice you seek and follow your intuition.

– Go to the waiting room with tools to distract you if you think you will need or need them. Depending on your particular clinic, you may be in the waiting room for several hours before a surgical procedure or medical abortion is scheduled. You may also have to wait for some pain medication to work or hang on afterward until it wears off and you rest.

– Consider taking a supportive companion with you. Some medical centers will require you to bring someone to drive you home after your surgical abortion. If you decide to keep company, choose someone whose presence will reduce any potential anxiety.

– Clearly explain to your companion what you need from him. Do you need a ride to and from the medical center? You want someone to distract you in the waiting room, lay in bed and watch movies with you while you recover from the procedure, or wait for the medicine to work, run to the pharmacy, or rub your back. Find it out and let them know. By helping them help you, you can prepare yourself.

– Think about your birth control plan to prevent another unwanted pregnancy. It’s great to go from pregnant to protected. Many abortion providers will encourage women to take a birth control plan after an abortion. For example, you can usually have an IUD inserted on the same day of your surgical abortion or at your follow-up visit after your medical abortion.

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