In a study of post-abortion patients only 8 weeks after their abortion, researchers found that 44% complained of nervous disorders, 36% had experienced sleep disturbances, 31% had regrets about their decision, and 11% had been prescribed psychotropic medicine by their family doctor.

(2) A 2006 study published in Sleep, the official journal of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, found that women who experienced abortion were more likely to be treated for sleep disorders or disturbances compared to women who gave birth.(27) A 5 year retrospective study in two Canadian provinces found significantly greater use of medical and psychiatric services among women with a history of abortion.

SUICIDAL IDEATION AND SUICIDE ATTEMPTS: Approximately 60 percent of women who experience post-abortion sequelae report suicidal ideation, with 28 percent actually attempting suicide, of which half attempted suicide two or more times.(13) Researchers in Finland have identified a strong statistical association between abortion and suicide in a records based study (see figure at the right).

The suicide rate associated with birth, by contrast, was half the rate of all women and less than one-sixth the rate of suicide among women who had abortions.(13) Besides the Finland study, large record-based studies from the United States and Denmark have found that overall death rates were higher among women following abortion compared to those among women who had given birth.(24) The U. study examined Medi-Cal records for more than 173,000 low-income California women who had experienced abortion or childbirth.

Linking these records to death certificates, the researchers found that women who had state-funded abortions were 2.6 times more likely to die from suicide compared to women who delivered their babies.

Women with a history of abortion were 55 percent more likely to have mental health problems than women who did not abort an unplanned pregnancy.(25) A 2010 study, which was published in the and examined a nationally representative sample of more than 3,000 women in the United States, found that women who underwent an abortion had a 98 percent increased risk for any mental health disorders compared to women who did not have an abortion.

Women who had abortions also had: Approximately 6 percent of suicidal ideation cases among women nationwide and 25 percent of cases of drug use could be related to abortion, the researchers found.(26) Further, a meta-analysis combining the results of eight studies of women who experienced unwanted pregnancies, published in 2013, concluded that “there is no available evidence to suggest that abortion has therapeutic effects in reducing the mental health risks of unwanted or unintended pregnancy.” Lead author Professor David Fergusson, who has described himself in interviews as a pro-choice atheist, also led the research team in a 2008 study that concluded that women who continued an unwanted or mistimed pregnancy did not experience a significant increase in mental health problems.

Numerous other studies have also revealed higher rates of suicide and suicide attempts associated with abortion.(13) ALCOHOL AND DRUG ABUSE: Over twenty studies have linked abortion to increased rates of drug and alcohol use.

Abortion is significantly linked with a two fold increased risk of alcohol abuse among women.(16) Abortion followed by alcohol abuse is linked to violent behavior, divorce or separation, auto accidents, and job loss.(17) In addition to the psycho-social costs of such abuse, drug abuse is linked with increased exposure to HIV/AIDS infections, congenital malformations, and assaultive behavior.

Printable Fact Sheets Physical Complications Risk Factors for Psychological Complications More articles on abortion risks Abortion REQUIREMENT OF PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENT: A study of the medical records of 56,741 California medicaid patients revealed that women who had abortions were than delivering women to be hospitalized for psychiatric treatment in the first 90 days following abortion or delivery.

Rates of psychiatric treatment remained significantly higher for at least four years.

(18) EATING DISORDERS: For at least some women, post-abortion stress is associated with eating disorders such as binge eating, bulimia, and anorexia nervosa.

(19) SEXUAL DYSFUNCTION: Thirty to fifty percent of the women who experience difficulty adjusting to a past abortion report experiencing sexual dysfunctions, of both short and long duration, beginning immediately after their abortions.

The meta-analysis examined and combined results of 22 studies published between 19 and included data on 877,181 women from six countries.