Air Travel is Safe for Pregnancy

Air Travel is Safe for Pregnancy

That darn groundhog saw his shadow this year, so hang tight as we hold on to 6 more weeks of cold weather. Or, for many who just can’t bear the cold any longer, take advantage of a spring break, exploring somewhere tropical, or just a little warmer. So this time you happen to be pregnant want wanting to get away, for a spring break… or maybe the new trend of setting off on a babymoon!

Exciting, and totally ok! Of course, I’m not a doctor so check with your healthcare provider to make sure you are good to go, but in a traditionally healthy pregnancy, travel, including air travel is very safe. Many mother’s-to-be travel throughout their entire pregnancy without any issues. My own OB told me the cut off for air travel is 36 weeks! The only downfall is being so uncomfortable towards the end, those tiny airline seats just don’t cut it. Pregnancy is a natural part of life. It is not typically a time where a mother-to-be has to limit her physical interactions and experiences, in fact, this can be an opportunity for additional memories and experiences. As with most everything in life, you need to do your research, communicate with your medical team and listen to your body.

When traveling with your babybump, it is very important to listen to your body and be prepared for new experiences in so many different manners. The first trimester can be an awesome time for travel. Remember and be mindful of the sudden morning sickness and fatigue that often rears its’ ugly head around 7 or 8 weeks along in the pregnancy journey. Just be prepared, and have some Sparkling Mama’s Fizzelixir handy for that queasy time that is often exacerbated by air motion.

One of my biggest hesitations about travel was the radiation risk going through the airport metal detectors…but worry be gone, there is actually NO radiation risk when going through the x-ray machines (okay, let’s call it as it really is- glorified metal detectors!) Still, I usually opt out and get a pat down by the TSA agent. As far as being on an airplane… and all the airplane cabins are pressurized, so that’s not an issue. The main concern with a long flight – this is the same as with a long drive, is the concern of deep venous thrombosis (DVT) or blood clot, from the lack of movement. This is also a risk to a non pregnant person, just a little increased with pregnancy. What I am saying is flying is as safe as any other mode of travel! Simply do a little research, communicate with your medical team, plan your trip WITH your pregnancy in mind and then pack your bags!

Here are just a few tips to keep in mind for air travel during this amazing journey through pregnancy. First, try to book a seat on the aisle. This will make it so much easier to stretch your legs, easier to take short “walks”, and the necessary jaunts to the restroom. Remember to walk! Stretch your legs – this increases the blood flow! Another recommendation is to wear compression leggings or support stockings that increase leg circulation. This helps decrease the possibility of a blood clot in your legs that can possibly move to your lungs. These compression garments are actually quite comfortable, especially during your third trimester as legs become more achy. Stay hydrated! This is important for everyone but more important during pregnancy because simple dehydration can trigger so many pregnancy related issues that simple hydration will alleviate. Take an empty hydration bottle that you can fill up after you pass through Security so that you have nothing to hinder this. Drink that water! Also important is to bring snacks, or a meal. You never know when delays will hit, while you are belted in on the runway. Many pregnant women experience an increase in hunger…and we all know airlines have become stingy with their snack availability, so pack those nuts, protein bars and fruit! If flying is a part of your travel and you are experiencing morning sickness, air travel can intensify the experience, so make sure to bring along something that helps you. OF course we recommend Sparkling Mama, but there may be other products that you love.

Educate yourself on the medical facilities located at your destination, just to be prepared. Bring your insurance card, and doctor’s information with you to be safe. As long as you are healthy, and have experienced no pregnancy related issues, travel is typically not a problem during your pregnancy up until your 36th week. As always, consult with your doctor before travel, and then…enjoy your vacation!

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