Traveling During Pregnancy
Is it that time of the year when you’re usually planning your annual getaway? Or did you suddenly feel a desire to visit the turquoise skies of Mykonos? Are you looking up information online about whether you can safely travel during pregnancy? The answer is, if you have an uncomplicated pregnancy, you are likely to be able to travel at all times during your pregnancy. Whether it’s by plane, train, car, with your doctor’s recommendations, and organized preparations, there’s no reason why you should stay at home. Here are some few educational tips to help you on your way of exploring the world while pregnant.
Traveling by car
Here are a few guidelines to remember when choosing to travel by car during your pregnancy:
- Drink water regularly and eat properly as dizziness and fatigue are common during pregnancy. Eat natural, energy-rich foods in order to boost your health and overall well-being.
- Always wear a seatbelt. Simply fasten the lower belt across your lap/thighs and run the shoulder belt between your breasts and up over your shoulder.
- Make regular breaks at least every 2 hours to stretch your legs and use the toilet. By doing so, you’ll increase the blood circulation in your legs and reduce bladder pressure.
- Open windows to keep fresh air circulating in the car.
- If you’re sitting in the front passenger’s seat, slide the seat as far back as possible to avoid airbag impact in case of collision.
- If you’re driving a car, slide the seat as far back as possible from the steering wheel.
- Always have your mobile phone with you in case you need to call a roadside assistance service.
- Avoid taking long trips on your own. Always have a companion driving with you alongside.
Traveling by Air
As long as you have a normal and healthy pregnancy, it’s safe to fly. Keep in mind that your second trimester is the most ideal time to fly. You’ll no longer suffer from morning sickness, fatigue, and/or dizziness. However, it’s also recommended not to fly past your 36th week of pregnancy. Keep these tips into mind when booking your flight:
- Discuss any potential risks before flying with your doctor. If you’re suffering from gestational diabetes, you’ll likely be advised not to fly.
- Don’t forget to review your health insurance plan to make sure it covers prenatal complications and delivery in foreign countries.
- Carry written documentation of your due date when traveling. Some airlines require seeing this information.
- Regarding immunization, many doctors worry that some vaccines can harm the developing fetus. For that reason, avoid flying to countries that require vaccines.
- Ask for a bulkhead seat or a seat near an exit for extra leg room.
- Book an aisle seat if possible to make going to the toilet a little easier.
- If you need to travel with a medical kit, pack it in your carry-on luggage. Your medical kit should/could contain multivitamins, pain relief pills, cough syrup, and constipation medicine.
- Stretch your legs every 2 hours to encourage blood circulation. Consider wearing compression stockings/socks during your flight. This helps prevent leg swelling and blood clots. Compression stockings/socks can keep your legs from getting tired and achy. They may even stop you from feeling light-headed or dizzy when you stand up.
- Wear your seat belt strap over your lower lap/upper thighs.
- Drink plenty of water to lower the risk of dehydration.
Traveling by Sea
If you're having a normal, healthy pregnancy, traveling by sea can be a safe, relaxing, and romantic vacation. Here are some recommendations that will make your trip even safer:
- Talk to your healthcare provider about whether traveling by sea is a good idea for you. Your doctor might advise you to postpone that trip if you have a medical condition that might complicate your pregnancy, such as carrying twins.
- Check to see if the ship/boat has medical personnel on staff. Bring your own supply of medications to cover the entire trip.
- Find out if the ferry company has its own restrictions on pregnancy and whether they accept to carry pregnant women beyond 32 weeks.
- Check your health insurance plan to make sure you’re covered in a case of complications on board or at the ports of call.
- Ask your healthcare provider about seasickness medications that you can safely take during pregnancy.
- For the smoothest ride, ask for a cabin in the middle of the ship, close to the water line.
- Spend as much time on deck as possible.
- Wear loose clothes and comfortable shoes during the trip.
- Enjoy the trip!