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Someone asked us: I have an appointment to get abortion pills tomorrow. What should I do to prepare? What should I eat before I take my abortion pill?

It’s normal to have questions before having an abortion. Our step-by-step checklist can help you feel prepared, whether you’re getting an in-clinic abortion or taking abortion pills. Here are the basics:

There’s not much you have to do before a medication abortion, and you can eat whatever you want before you take the pills. Your nurse or doctor will let you know if there’s anything else you need to do to prepare, and they’ll give you written instructions on how to take your pills. You’ll get a number you can call 24/7 if you have any questions or concerns, so know that you’ll have access to a caring professional throughout the process. 

You’ll have a lot of bleeding and cramping during a medication abortion, so plan ahead to make it more comfortable. On the day you take the last dose of medicine, try to be at home, or someplace that’s comfortable for you to rest. You may also want to have someone you trust with you (or nearby) if you need anything. The abortion process can take several hours, so it’s a good idea to clear your calendar for the day.

Stock up on maxi pads, comfort food, books, movies, or whatever you like to help pass the time. Make sure you have some pain medicine (like ibuprofen or acetaminophen), but don’t take aspirin because it can make you bleed more. Taking a shower, sitting on the toilet, using a heating pad or hot water bottle on your belly and having someone rub your back can also help.

You may feel tired for 1 or 2 days after, but you should be back to normal soon. You can go back to work, school, driving, and most other normal activities the next day if you feel up to it. But don’t do hard work or heavy exercise for several days. If you don’t start to feel better after several days have gone by, call your doctor or health center.

Tags: Abortion, abortion pill, medication abortion