If you have recently found out that you are pregnant, or think you might be pregnant, you may be wondering what impact it might have on your mental health.
What is Mental Health?
You’ve probably heard the term mental health used quite a bit recently, but do you know what it means?
The World Health Organization defines mental health as a state of well-being in which an individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.
Put another way, your mental health has a big impact on your life–from your physical health to the decisions you make.
Mental Health During Pregnancy
As your body changes during pregnancy you might also see changes to your emotions and mental health. The good news is what you experience will likely be very typical.
In fact, according to the Mayo Clinic, it’s normal to feel delighted, anxious, exhilarated, and exhausted–sometimes all at once. It’s also not unusual to experience depression during your pregnancy. This is due to both your body changing and producing hormones, as well as your mind adjusting to a new reality.
But if you are facing an unplanned pregnancy these feelings can sometimes feel even more overwhelming, as you try to consider your options for your future and your health.
Mental Health and Abortion
If you’re considering an abortion you have probably already seen and are familiar with the potential risk and side effects to your physical health. But did you know that research is now finding a link between abortion and mental health risks?
Psychotherapist Vincent Rue was one of the first medical experts to conduct a study that explored the negative mental health impact of abortion on women. The study found that women who have had an abortion experience increased feelings of guilt, shame, and regret. Additionally, the study found that women who had abortions were at a higher risk of developing depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
Another study connecting abortion and negative mental health impacts was done by David Fergusson, a renowned researcher who has conducted extensive research on the negative impact of abortion on women’s mental health. His research found that women who have had abortions are at a higher risk of developing depression and anxiety, and that these mental health problems often persist for years after the abortion. Additionally, Fergusson’s research showed that women who have had abortions are also at a higher risk of developing substance abuse problems, such as alcoholism and drug addiction.
We Care About You.
If you are facing an unplanned pregnancy, the staff at A Friend For You is here for you. Our team is made up of women who know the fear and confusion of an unplanned pregnancy and are prepared to give you the help you need–from providing important information for you to being a listening ear. We also can connect you with resources in the community, from free pregnancy testing to free ultrasound scans, all the things that can empower you to make the best decision for your future and your health.
It’s your health and future, so you deserve to get the information and support you need.