Unsafe Abortion Methods and Health Risks for Women

It is wise to follow medically approved and certified procedures for pregnancy termination. Here, professionals with the necessary skills and following the required standards conduct the invasive process. Or, you can take abortion pills to self-administer at home and end the pregnancy by yourself if the gestation is within 9 weeks. But unsafe abortion methods are also prevalent. These exist usually in regions that lack pregnancy care and practitioners to provide appropriate attention/

In developing countries, around 25 million cases of unsafe medical terminations take place every year. This leads to life-threatening consequences and pregnancy complications (in about 7 million females annually). This is also the reason for deaths during childbirth and pregnancy, accounting for 5 to 13% of deaths that occur during this time. With the availability of trained practitioners and affordable care, incidents of harmful pregnancy terminations can be tackled worldwide.

The reason for the unsafe ending of pregnancies also is on the rise due to unawareness about modern birth control and abortion, combined with prevention for unplanned pregnancies. In this post, we will talk about health-damaging methods for pregnancy termination that people may adopt, how they may cause complications, and ways to ensure the safe ending of a pregnancy.

unsafe abortion methods

Unsafe Abortion Methods That People Practice

Here are the methods that women may use to end their pregnancy without following safety protocols:

1.  Using Sharp Objects or Wires

When a person is pregnant, the uterus softens. And thus, it is easy to pierce it. Traditionally, large features were utilized. But in today’s world, such unsafe abortion methods have gone defunct and been replaced by practical medical care and measures. Yet, some females use sharp wires and objects such as knitting needles and wire cloth hangers.

With these objects, the person tries to puncture and break the amniotic sac in the uterus. It can injure internal reproductive organs and risk infections. Some of the instances include perforation of the intestines and uterus, leading to heavy bleeding and death.

2.  Toxic Abortifacients and Mixtures

Self-administering toxic substances such as permanganate, alum, plant poison, Lysol, or unapproved abortifacients to induce labor can be dangerous to well-being. It may result in toxic shock for females and death. Other risks are anemia requiring blood transfusion, uterine rupture, a drop or rise in blood pressure drastically, intense bronchospasms in an individual with asthma, irregular heartbeat, pulmonary edema, and cardiovascular problems.

3.  Heavy Physical Stress and Exercising Deliberately

Exercising lightly as per the instruction of the healthcare provider is still safe during pregnancy. But it is unsafe to perform heavy exercises and workouts as the pregnancy advances. Women who want a natural miscarriage often stress themselves physically. This is regarding expecting the products of conception to disengage from the womb and remove themselves. However, such measures are threatening to health and life. Those who survive the shock may find issues in future pregnancies because of damage to internal organs and long-term impact on health. 

4.  Misuse of Emergency Contraceptive Pills

Emergency contraceptive pills can stop a pregnancy from taking place by disallowing implantation even after the egg is fertilized. But it cannot undo a pregnancy that has already taken place. But to cause a medical termination, women often take a high dose of such pills. They believe it can expel the pregnancy portions from the uterus with the endometrial lining breaking down. However, there is no surety of such an incident taking place. Also, overdosing on the medicine can invite other health issues.

5.  No Maintenance of Hygiene

As much as it is necessary to follow a medically approved method for abortion, maintaining hygiene is also essential. Dirty surroundings, unwashed clothes, or linen on which the person lies down on can cause a high risk of infection. Utilizing old and non-sterilized instruments can further increase complications. The condition of the person can worsen if non-recognized pills or methods are undertaken to end the pregnancy.

Health Risks of Unsafe Abortions on Pregnant Women

An unsafe abortion often leads to injury, if not death. The WHO estimates that because of unsafe pregnancy termination, around 7.9% of deaths occur in pregnant women, especially in the Caribbean, Latin America, East Asia, and sub-Saharan Africa. Most of these incidents happen in developing nations. Public health campaigns and awareness along with increasing facilities to address pregnancy services and issues may and are reducing the events.

Yet, the practice continues because of limited access to and knowledge about safe abortion. An unsafe ending of pregnancy can spurt up a number of health risks such as harm to internal organs, hemorrhaging, and infections leading to permanent medical conditions and infertility. If there is an infection, timely administration of antibiotics or removal of the infected tissue may help. Any delay can be fatal in case of not admitting the female to emergency care in case of hemorrhaging or injury to the genitals.

Some of the symptoms that require the immediate attention of a professional during an abortion are:

·        Vaginal infection

·        Collapse of the circulatory system i.e., shock

·        Abnormal vaginal bleeding

·        A high fever

·        Palpitations and irregular heartbeats

·        Intense abdominal pain

In the case of an ectopic pregnancy, where the location of pregnancy is outside the uterus, it is much riskier to get an abortion without taking precautions. Such a pregnancy necessitates termination through an invasive process carried out by a certified professional and in a hospital or clinic with needful facilities. It is not recommended to carry an ectopic pregnancy to full term. Do not use medicines to end the pregnancy. Also, end a pregnancy that has met incomplete abortion or it can cause the death of the person.

Final Words

Regardless of whether abortion is being carried out in a medically safe environment or through an unsafe method, it is important to have pregnancy care facilities in place. Otherwise, it is difficult to treat the resulting complications, be they temporary or permanent effects.

Abortion pills such as Mifepristone and Misoprostol when used together are 97-99% effective in early pregnancy. Surgical abortions are also 99% efficient. Thus, it is better to choose an effective and certified way for pregnancy termination. Here, the risks for any complication are next to negligible.