Flying when pregnant is an excellent idea as long as you are not too close to your due date and have an uncomplicated pregnancy. In fact, it may be your last opportunity to travel light with a cooperative baby.
Unlike normal travel, traveling during pregnancy requires some planning to guarantee a safe and comfortable trip. Whether you are flying for your babymoon or business, the tips below will enhance the experience.
Timing is King
While it is generally safe to travel with a healthy pregnancy, timing is crucial. The first trimester is the low-risk period for flying. Air travel-related things like metal detectors, cabin pressure, and noise vibration do not jeopardize pregnant women.
If your first trimester is problematic due to nausea, vomiting, headaches, and fatigue, the second trimester is a good time to travel. During this period, you are energized, look and feel good, and are not overly tired.
Traveling in the third trimester can be complicated since you may go into labor anytime from 36 weeks. Regardless of your trimester, click here to shop for newborn necessities, so you are prepared for your newest family member.
Check Airline and Insurance Policies
Check your preferred airline’s policy on flying when pregnant. Some airlines allow pregnant women to fly until 36 weeks for single pregnancies and 32 weeks for twins. Others require you to present a doctor’s letter stating your pregnancy is healthy and indicating your due date.
Also, ask your health insurance provider about their policies on flying while pregnant. Will the provider cater to your bills if you need medical help in your destination country? Will you be covered if you deliver to the destination? Do you need additional coverage for overseas travel?
All these questions will help you better plan your travel and avoid headaches and costly surprises. You may need medical evacuation or travel insurance to increase safety and attain greater peace of mind during the trip. Do not forget to pack a copy of your travel and health insurance policies as well as your maternity medical records.
Talk to Your Practitioner
Moms-to-be should schedule an appointment with their practitioner before making travel plans. It is vital to get medical clearance, especially if you have a chronic medical condition or pregnancy-related complications. A physician can advise on potential risk factors, vaccinations needed, and location safety health-wise.
If you are flying to a high altitude or tropical region, the doctor should approve it to reduce any risks posed to you and your unborn baby. For instance, a physician may disapprove of flying to areas with the Zika virus due to its reputation for causing congenital disabilities.
A physician can also help you prepare a first aid kit for your pregnancy stage and unique medical problems. Also, he advises on nausea, gas, and diarrhea remedies.
Since high altitudes can lead to gas problems, a practitioner can prescribe good meds. It pays to ask your doctor about prenatal care in your destination, depending on your trip’s length. Also, enquire about hospitals and doctors in case you need medical care.
Get Comfortable In Flight
Numerous things can increase safety and comfort for expectant mothers before and during flight. First, before the flight, refrain from eating gassy and spicy foods and carbonated drinks as they cause gas and worsen nausea.
Second, wear comfortable and loose clothing to enhance blood flow. The shoes should also be comfy for maximum comfort and swelling prevention. Your doctor may also approve compression stockings to prevent blood clots, swelling, and achiness.
Third, pick a strategic seat. It is advisable to request a seat in the bulkhead since it is more spacious or over the wing for a smooth ride. Additionally, opt for an aisle seat so you can use the bathroom easily or take walks without disturbing your seatmate. Fourth, ensure you fasten your seatbelt correctly. Ask an attendant for help when unable to do it. Fifth, avoid sitting still for long and try standing and stretching every hour.
Sixth, stay hydrated by taking plenty of fluids like water and juice. Also, eat regularly and healthily –fiber-rich and energy-boosting foods are best. You can pack granola bars, fruit, yogurt, whole grain cereals, and seeds and nuts in your carry-on bag to satisfy your cravings, and, in case of flight, food doesn’t appeal to you.
Lastly, enjoy your flight and travel. Use a rolling suitcase, so you won’t bear your luggage’s weight. Consider requesting a cart or wheelchair in the airport when tired or rushing to make a connection.
While travel may be overwhelming with family and friends to visit, attractions to see, and places to explore, make sure you listen to your body and take time to relax.
Flying when pregnant is safe and does not carry any significant risks. Ensure you plan your travel by checking airline and insurance restrictions, getting a doctor’s clearance, and taking precautions before and during the flight. If your doctor and airline give the green light, the sky’s the limit!