How to Travel During Pregnancy

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Most women are highly sceptical about traveling during a pregnancy, as they feel that doing so is an unnecessary risk that could potentially cause harm to their unborn baby.

Most midwives will tell you that during a healthy pregnancy, moderate travel is acceptable providing you understand (and adhere to) a strict set of travel guidelines.

Here are 4 tips for success when traveling during a pregnancy:

1) If you are thinking about traveling on a plane, talk to your physician or midwife about it, as they will be able to let you know whether you’re in a suitable condition for air travel or not.

Traveling while pregnantWhether you’ll be able to fly or not largely depends on how far along you are in your pregnancy. Generally once you reach 35 weeks of pregnancy you’ll be strongly advised against flying.

Note that most airlines have their own list of ‘flying while pregnant rules’ that you’ll need to adhere to, so check with them beforehand and ask if you need a letter of medical clearance (from your health professional) or not.

2) Once you’re in the air, be sure to drink as much water as you can and to walk up and down the aisles every 45-60 minutes. Because of this, it’s best to be seating in an aisle seat (for ease of access).

In addition to this, make sure to wear wear compression stockings (also known as support stockings) when flying to reduce the risk of DVT (deep vein thrombosis) and blood clots.

3) Make sure to keep your health insurance information and a list of all important phone numbers on you at all times when you travel, so that you can call your midwife/physician if you go into labour when you’re away.

Your midwife/physician will be able to fax your medical details over to the hospital you’re at. Although it’s not an ideal circumstance, it’s better than nothing.

4) Whenever you’re traveling in a car, make sure to wear your seat belt in the ‘pregnancy position’, whereby the lower belt is under your abdomen and the upper belt is between the breasts.

It’s important to stretch your legs every hour or so (as with air travel during pregnancy), so plan frequent stops on long journeys and drink plenty of fluids.

It’s also a good idea to wear compression stocking on long car journeys (as with plane journeys) to prevent blood clots.

Following these 4 tips should help ensure safe travel during a pregnancy. Remember, however, that it is extremely unwise to travel past the 35 week point into the pregnancy, so if you are planning a trip, make sure to do it before this time.

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