Are pregnant moms free to travel? Yes, being pregnant doesn’t prevent you from traveling. Being pregnant while traveling can be stressful — but it doesn’t have to be. The only extra weight you’re carrying is that in-utero bundle of joy — traveling can be a slightly easier undertaking.
However, doing a little extra prep beforehand can go a long way to reducing discomforts en route at and at your destination.
Have in mind that whether you are going by air or road, it is safe to travel while you are pregnant. However, note that there are some pregnancy and travel related concerns. In this article, I’d be sharing certain tips to help make your trip the safest and most comfortable it can be.
Travel Tips For Pregnant Moms
For most women, pregnancy has its fair share of nausea, discomfort, and fatigue. But the good news is all three symptoms won’t usually span the full nine months. It is advised to take advantage of the second trimester when you’ve likely overcome morning sickness, but not yet felt the onset of increased fatigue. When possible, it’s best to schedule your travel between the 20- and 30-week marks, according to Dr. Aron Schuftan, a California-based OB-GYN, and co-founder of EmbraceHer Health‘s free Pregnancy Companion mobile app. Regardless of whether you can schedule your travel for that hopefully asymptomatic sweet spot, try to avoid traveling after 36 to 38 weeks of pregnancy. And always consult with your doctor before you head off — women with higher-risk pregnancies may be discouraged from traveling.
A Domestic Destination Should Be More Preferred
It can be tempting to visit a far-off destination before the yelps of a crying infant leave you in a perpetual state of sleep deprivation. But if you can reel in those vacation fantasies to domestic locales, you may face less discomfort on your journey. Stay closer to home and you’ll reduce some ambiguity when it comes to contaminated food, unsafe drinking water, and foreign medical care.
Bring a Copy of Your Prenatal Records
No matter where your itinerary takes you, always bring along a copy of your prenatal records and medical notes. And while you’re planning your trip, be sure to determine where the nearest hospital or medical facility is located. Should you need treatment from a local doctor during your trip, your records will provide an essential starting point for a medical professional to understand the circumstances of your pregnancy.
Traveling By Road Is More Preferred
Flying may be faster and traveling by boat may let you rock your soon-to-arrive neonate to sleep, but if you plan to travel while pregnant the best mode of transport is the good old-fashioned automobile. The reason? You’ll have more immediate access to emergency medical care and you can make frequent pit stops to stretch, visit a restroom or take a break from any nausea-inducing motion.
Stay Hydrated and Bring Healthy Snacks
An airplane’s recirculated cabin air certainly doesn’t leave you feeling hydrated. Add in your body’s pregnancy needs, and it’s likely you’ll quickly become parched at 30,000 feet. While it’s essential to drink plenty of water at all times during pregnancy, it’s especially important during travel. According to the American Pregnancy Association, pregnant women should drink eight to 12 glasses of water per day in order to ensure that their amniotic fluid is renewed and breast milk production is on track, among other health benefits.
Find Comfort And Stretch
As a pregnant mom, your days of seeking that coveted airplane window seat are over. Remember that hydration tip? Well, it turns out drinking a lot of water often means quite a few trips to the water closet. A seat adjacent to the aisle will not only grant you easier access to the bathroom, but it will ensure that you have plenty of room to stretch out your legs and take frequent strolls down the plane aisles to prevent blood clots. Pregnant women are in what Schuftan called a “hypercoagulable state,” making them more susceptible to clotting, and this condition is more likely to worsen when sitting for long periods of time.