How Soon After An Abortion Can You Get Pregnant?

In the moments before and after an abortion, a hundred questions pop up in your head. One of the most frequent queries we get at our abortion clinic in Fort Lauderdale is: how soon after an abortion can you get pregnant?

We get that question either from women who want to ensure they avoid another unwanted pregnancy or women who desire to become pregnant in the future and worry about the effects of abortion on fertility. 

If you just had an abortion or are considering it, and how soon after an abortion you can get pregnant is one of your concerns, we hear you. In today’s article, our dedicated healthcare team will explain how to take care of your fertility after a pregnancy termination or natural abortion. We’ll also share when you can conceive again and the best birth control methods. 

Abortion and Fertility: Can I Still Get Pregnant After an Abortion?

How Soon After An Abortion Can You Get Pregnant? The image shows a woman holding a pregnancy test.

Yes, after having an abortion, you can get pregnant again. Regardless of whether you have a natural abortion or a pregnancy termination through surgical or medical abortion (the abortion pill), you can still conceive.  

Does abortion affect fertility? No, having an abortion doesn’t affect fertility nor increase complication rates during future pregnancies, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG). If you recently had an abortion, know that despite the abortion method you chose, you can still have a normal pregnancy at any point in your life. 

That being said, if you have ended an unwanted pregnancy and don’t desire to conceive again in the near future, you must think about contraceptives. We advise you to talk with your healthcare provider about birth control options and the best types of birth control for your health and preferences.

Does Abortion Impact The Menstrual Cycle?

To know how soon you can get pregnant after an abortion, you must understand your menstrual cycle. Women can get pregnant during ovulation, which generally occurs 14 days before they have their period. 

An abortion doesn’t have any impact on your menstrual cycle. While ovulation stops when you are pregnant – that’s why you don’t have your period – the cycle will resume right after having the natural, surgical, or medical abortion.

When Do You Ovulate After Having An Abortion?

After you have a pregnancy termination, your menstrual cycle restarts. That means you are likely to ovulate again 2 to 3 weeks after the procedure.

However, not all bodies are the same, and menstrual cycles do not always have perfect timing, especially after an abortion. 

Studies show that after a medical abortion with Misoprostol and Mifepristone (abortion pills), women typically ovulate after 2-3 weeks. 

Conversely, if the woman had a surgical abortion at a clinic, ovulation can occur a few weeks later. That happens because, with a surgical procedure, pregnancy hormones tend to last longer on the body, postponing the start of the menstrual cycle. 

When Does The Menstrual Cycle Go Back To Normal?

Despite the abortion restarting your cycle, your period should arrive 4 to 8 weeks after the pregnancy termination. After that period, your menstrual cycle will go back to normal, and you will experience your period regularly each month as you used to. 

When will you have your period back depends on several factors, including abortion methods, body recovery, and post-abortion bleeding.

Two of the most common side effects of an abortion are cramping and bleeding, similar to or more intense than the symptoms you experience during your period. You shouldn’t confuse that bleeding with having your period; after abortion, bleeding is your body expelling the remaining pregnancy. 

How long do you bleed after an abortion? The abortion procedure determines that. Post-abortion bleeding can vary from one woman to another. Typically, you can bleed for a couple of days and up to 2 weeks. 

How Soon After an Abortion Can You Get Pregnant?

Since you can ovulate 2 weeks after the pregnancy termination, you can get pregnant too quickly after an abortion.

Even if you didn’t have your period, you may have already ovulated, meaning you can conceive again. 

Still, not two women’s bodies work the same. So, your best option, if you don’t desire to get pregnant again, is to practice protected sex. All contraceptive methods, such as condoms or birth control pills, are effective after an abortion. If you don’t have a preferred method, you can talk with your healthcare provider at the abortion clinic about the best contraceptives to avoid pregnancy. 

How Long Should You Wait To Conceive After An Abortion

If you had an abortion due to health reasons, maybe you are already wondering how soon after an abortion you can get pregnant and if you must wait. As we explained in the previous sections, women can get pregnant as soon as they have their first ovulation. That sometimes happens even before they get their first period back.

So, you can get pregnant again fairly soon, but the crucial question is: should you get pregnant right away? Is it safe to get pregnant too soon after having an abortion?

During an abortion and the days that follow, your body goes through an enormous amount of physical stress. It will take some time, a couple of weeks or months, for your body to recover and return to normal. Most doctors recommend women wait about 2-3 months before getting pregnant again. 

While your body is ready to conceive again, it might not be best to make it undergo a significant physical change again too quickly. Our advice is to consult with your primary healthcare provider or obstetrician about the best date to start trying to conceive again. If you had an uncomplicated abortion, you would likely not have to wait long. Your doctor will better understand your situation and how to move forward.

Risks Of Getting Pregnant Too Soon After an Abortion 

The risks of getting pregnant too quickly after having an abortion are primarily associated with the body not having adequately healed from the procedure. Your body, particularly the uterus, needs time to recover from an abortion. Not giving it enough time to rest and heal can lead to some of the following complications: 

  • Infections.
  • Incomplete healing of the uterus lining.
  • Increased risk of preterm labor or miscarriage. 

One of the most common risks of trying to conceive right after an abortion is catching an infection. In the days or weeks after an abortion, you will likely experience vaginal bleeding. Sex after abortion is usually advised against by healthcare providers because it can lead to an infection that compromises the woman’s health. If you get pregnant, that infection can also compromise the fetus or lead to a high-risk pregnancy. 

What Can You Do To Reduce the Risk of Pregnancy Complications After an Abortion?

As mentioned above, an abortion doesn’t affect fertility; abortion patients can still have normal, healthy pregnancies in the future. 

However, as with any other medical procedure, you must take good care of your health and take some measures to avoid health risks or complications. This is what you can do to protect your health and avoid future risks after an abortion:

  • Attend a professional clinic: While abortions are very safe procedures, they are still medical procedures, and as such, they should be conducted by healthcare professionals. If you decide to use the abortion pill, a trained nurse will tell you how the process works and indicate how you must take it to ensure a successful pregnancy termination. If you prefer or need a surgical abortion, the procedure should take place at a certified clinic. 
  • Do your research: Take your time to research a good clinic with abortion professionals, enough experience, and past client testimonials. 
  • Rest your body: After an abortion, it is expected to feel physically and mentally exhausted. Make sure to take enough time to rest, heal, and recharge energies. Doing so will make the healing process quicker, and you will feel as good as new in no time. 
  • Avoid having sex right away: the days following the procedure, you will experience vaginal bleeding, very similar to when you have your period. Most doctors recommend waiting a few days or weeks to have sex to avoid infections and allow your body to rest and heal. 
  • Schedule a follow-up consultation: Follow-up appointments after an abortion are not mandatory. However, they can be crucial to check the procedure was successful, detect symptoms of incomplete abortion in time, and ensure your body is healing correctly.

Final Thoughts

How soon after an abortion you can get pregnant? Very soon. That is good news for women looking forward to conceiving again and a warning to use birth control methods for women who don’t desire another pregnancy. Regardless of your situation, getting pregnant too quickly after an abortion can be too much for your body to bear. That’s why doctors recommend you give your body and mind some well-deserved time to rest and heal.

Do you have more questions about pregnancy, fertility, or contraception after abortion? Feel free to contact us; our dedicated staff will happily answer all your doubts.