Most women travel during pregnancy. It could be a business trip or a vacation. Usually, travelling is safe for pregnant women, provided they take adequate safety measures before and throughout their journey. Pregnancy comes with its own risks and complications. In such a scenario, it is vital that you discuss your travel plans with your gynecologist well in advance. There are certain very important things that you must be aware of, before you set off for your journey. Let us discuss about these tips that will surely help you travel with a peace of mind while being pregnant.
Talk to your doctor
Usually, it is harmless to travel during the second trimester. Complications generally crop up in the first and third trimester. However, your doctor/gynecologist remains the best person to advice you, whether you should travel during the current phase of your pregnancy.
- Make sure you discuss with your doctor about vaccines. Pregnant women are advised to keep away from live vaccines. Mumps, rubella, measles are the examples of active vaccines. Inactivated vaccines are believed to be safe. Hepatitis B vaccine is an example of inactivated vaccine.
- Discuss the purpose of taking this trip, the destination as well as your intended mode of transport. Your doctor will have a bigger picture to look at. He will be able to evaluate the underlying risks and advice you accordingly.
- Request your doctor to prescribe medication for motion sickness and nausea.
- Request for an up to date copy of your prenatal account and reports.
Buy a suitable travel insurance policy. Some travel insurance policies do not cover pregnancy. Make sure your policy cover has a provision for conditions associated with pregnancy and medical care for the premature baby.
How to travel?
If you intend to travel by air, make sure you inquire with the airline about their norms for taking pregnant women on board. Some airlines disallow women in the later stages of pregnancy from flying. Nevertheless, it is safe for a pregnant woman and her unborn baby to fly up to 8 months gestation, provided she is free from obstetric complications. The same applies to ferry companies, if you choose to travel by boat.
If you plan to travel by car, take someone along instead of going out on your own. It would be better if you let them drive. Keep the car well-ventilated. Do not forget to wear a seat belt. Wear the lap-strap under your belly and not across your belly. Take frequent breaks on the way to stretch your body.
Having small meals at regular intervals during long trips will ensure that you stay invigorated. This will keep your blood sugar level maintained and you won’t feel nauseous, pale and weak. Having a small bar of chocolate, an apple or any snack of your choice will help alleviate general pregnancy-related discomforts.
Drink plenty of fluids
Pregnant women need to keep their fluid levels high. Drink plenty of water throughout your journey. You should always carry a bottle of mineral water. Frequently, sip on natural fruit juices. Stay away from packaged drinks and alcohol.
Move around and stretch
When flying or travelling by car, get up and move around a little at frequent intervals. This will help prevent your body from becoming stiff and achy. Flying for long hours is associated with DVT (Deep vein Thrombosis), i.e., formation of blood clots in the legs. So, take frequent breaks to avoid DVT.
Be prepared for emergencies
Although you do not expect any emergencies, it would be extremely smart to be prepared for one. Carry an up to date copy of your prenatal account and reports and your insurance papers. Understand that there always is a possibility for things to go wrong. Being prepared will help you gain control over the situation.
Travelling while pregnant is a concern for most of the women. However, you can hit the road with confidence if you are healthy and free of complications. Just follow the above simple tips for a safe trip.