7 Of History's Craziest, Outdated, Most INSANE Abortion Methods

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History's Craziest Abortion Techniques

Don't try these at home (or ever).

Abortion has been around since ancient times, and people had some pretty medieval ways of going about it. While whether we do or don't have abortions now is a personal decision, and thank goodness we have safer options. Here are some of history's craziest abortion methods.

1. Ingesting herbs

Women throughout history hoped that mixtures of herbs would end a pregnancy, and folklore on such herbs is common in primitive societies around the world.

"Herbs can be less than reliable, with some like rosemary and sage having been credited for both aiding fertility and bringing on menstruation. In large doses, some herbs and their oils can be toxic," says author Susan Froetschel.

2. Using crocodile poop

While the idea of poop may make you want to vomit, ancient Egyptians also believed it could help prevent pregnancy and induce miscarriage. Since crocodile poop is slightly alkaline (like spermicides), there could be a chance that this method may have worked.

3. Bloodletting

Back in the day, especially in ancient Rome and Greece, people believed that bleeding others nearly to the point of death was supposed to cure all sorts of diseases and induce a miscarriage.

4. Sitting over steaming pots of onions

Women in eighth century were known to cause miscarriages by sitting over pots of onions. We're not sure how this works, but it sure sounds like a vaginal facial.

5. Wearing super-tight girdles

In the time before Spanx, English women in the sixteenth century would wear corsets and other compression garments to essentially squeeze out their unborn fetus.

6. Having an aggressive massage

In the 1800s, anthropologists say Alaskan Inuit women would manually knead and compress the uterus to cause miscarriage. That definitely doesn't sound painless.

7. Using sharp objects

For many decades, women have been known to use knitting needles, crochet hooks and wire hangers for abortions. This method is incredibly dangerous, and can lead to injury or death of the mother.


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