To understand the facts about abortion, one must first understand what abortion is. Abortion is a common medical process which is performed in theUnited Statesevery year. About 40% women end their pregnancy through abortion at some point of time during their reproductive lives.
While people across all classes seek abortion, the typical woman to end their pregnancy is young, unmarried, poor, white or over 40. Abortion which is also known as elective termination of pregnancy is a common occurrence in the US and other parts of the world.
It is said that around 1.2 million abortions are performed in the US every year. The total number of abortions taking place worldwide is 20 or 30 million legally and 10 to 20 million illegally.
13% of women die every year owing to illegal abortion as a result of serious complications. In countries where abortion is legal, these deaths are unheard of.
Despite the widely available birth control measures, 50% of the total 6 million pregnancies taking place annually in the US are unplanned and half of them end in an abortion.
An abortion terminates a pregnancy to eradicate chances of live birth. It can be through miscarriage or spontaneous/natural abortion or induced abortion which is known as an annihilation of pregnancy. While miscarriage is natural, induced abortion is premeditated.
The Abortion Act of 1967 declares abortion as legal if the pregnancy does not exceed 24 weeks with two doctors giving their consent on the abortion. One of these should apply:
- The life of the woman is at an increased risk if the pregnancy is continued.
- Termination is essential to avert enduring damage to the mental and physical health of the patient.
- Risks that the child to be born will suffer from severe mental or physical handicap
- Risk of other siblings suffering from mental or physical problems as a result of the child
Doctors can read the law on the basis of their personal views about the abortion. Some of them may even look at the economic and social circumstances of the woman. If the period of 24 weeks is over, abortion can happen if there are risks to the mother’s health or chances of serious handicap in the child.
Who Should Go for an Abortion?
A single or married woman can go for abortion if she has any of the reasons mentioned above and if two doctors agree on it. If you seriously want to abort, be firm in your opinion and elaborate your reasons.
A woman can go for an abortion after the pregnancy has been confirmed. By understanding the facts about abortion, the woman should decide not to carry on the pregnancy. Early abortion may occur immediately after the missing the first period.
Clinics and hospitals do not generally consider termination after 18 or 20 weeks. This is why you need the advice of your doctor at the earliest. An ultrasound scan will be used to determine the stage of pregnancy you are in. Since there are time restrictions, you should seek help at the earliest. Since abortion following 14 weeks can be tough, you may be required to wait for some time.
The abortion is carried out by an experienced doctor in a clinic, hospital or nursing home which is approved for performing abortions by the US Department of Health. A nurse or doctor can refuse doing the abortion if they have a moral disapproval of the process. If the doctor is unsympathetic or unhelpful with the abortion, you may seek the services of another physician who is willing to offer help and advice.
The easiness of acquiring an abortion depends on the causes as to why you want to go for it and the stage of your pregnancy. Abortions for around 12 weeks are simple, although after this date, it can get risky and complicated for the mother.
Due to the associated risks, doctors usually hesitate to perform abortions after this period. At times, you may not be able to access a free abortion facility and few consultants may be ready to recognize abortion cases. It is always best to be prepared with the facts about abortion to avoid any mishap or complications to your health.