Pregnancy is a time of change and adjustment, and those who plan to travel while pregnant should know that there are a number of things to consider. Whether you’re traveling by car or plane or for work or pleasure, there are a number of things you can do to ensure a smooth journey.
Pregnancy takes a toll on your body, and it’s normal to be tired and experience fluctuations in your energy levels. Make sure you don’t overload your schedule and allow yourself time to get the rest that you need.
Talk to your doctor
Traveling at different stages of your pregnancy can present different risks. It is important to talk to your doctor about any pending travel plans to ensure that you’re cleared for travel. You may also need to have written approval from your doctor to confirm that you’re able to travel. This commonly applies to individuals with specific health issues or who are in their third trimester.
Have health insurance
Health insurance is important when traveling to ensure that you don’t end up with costly, unexpected medical bills during an emergency. There can be complications with your pregnancy while you’re away from home, and having a good health insurance plan alleviates the stress of worrying about how you’re going to pay for bills.
Plan bathroom breaks
You will need to use the bathroom more often while pregnant, and it’s important to allow time for that when traveling. Make sure that you don’t have connecting flights that are too close together. If you’re driving, plan out your rest stops in advance.
Know your body
During pregnancy, your eating habits will change. So keep snacks on hand and, if you’re at risk for gestational diabetes, you may need to monitor your blood sugar. Pack extra snacks that will give you the nutrients you need to maintain a healthy blood sugar and ensure you aren’t hungry.
Traveling can be stressful for anyone, and when pregnant, it’s possible to experience some extreme emotions. It’s not uncommon for expectant parents to struggle with nerves or anxiety. Since these feelings can be exacerbated by the stress of travel, monitor yourself for mood swings, alleviate potential sources of stress when making plans, and prepare a soothing music playlist you can use or meditate to manage your moods.
You may need to switch planes while in transit or have luggage that needs to be moved. Remember that airlines and buslines have staff on hand who are available to assist you. When you book your tickets, be sure to let them know that you’re expecting and may require extra assistance. Airports can transport passengers between gateways and assist with luggage transfers.
Research your airline
The specific regulations for traveling when pregnant vary from airline to airline. It’s important to check with your specific airline to know what’s required so that you don’t have any unwelcome surprises when you check in. Some airlines do not allow travel after 28 weeks of pregnancy while others do not allow travel after 36 weeks, so it’s important to be clear about your airline’s policies. You also need to ensure you have any required documentation. In some cases,
Take your medications
Make sure you have any required medication with you, so that you can maintain your medication schedule and avoid unnecessary complications. An unexpected doctor’s visit while traveling isn’t ideal, because a new doctor won’t be familiar with your personal medical history.
Carry a list of family members and friends and their contact information, your doctor’s name and contact details, as well as a list of any medications that you are taking. In the event of emergency medical treatment medical staff will be able to contact your doctor, friends, and family.
They will also be able to ensure they do not give medications that conflict with any prescriptions you are taking. This means that if you require medical treatment and aren’t able to answer questions, medical staff can still provide you with optimal care.