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Pregnant woman seated at a train station looking at her travel map with her luggage next to her

Can Pregnant Women Take Flight?

Travelling while pregnant? Why not! Here’s the info you need to know before you start packing your bags.

Whether it is your first, second or subsequent pregnancy, it is always healthy to treat yourself (and your partner) to a time out. You could go out and have a nice dinner, a stroll at the park, or take a trip!

It is completely normal to worry about putting yourself or your unborn child at any risk. So, before booking your seats, do these two important things. One, visit your doctor and share the details of the trip with him/her. Two, check with the airline on their policy for pregnant travellers. Air travel is generally discouraged after the 36-week mark. Also, remember to ask them whether you need a note from your doctor verifying your due date.

If your doctor clears you for take-off and it’s all good with the airline, then hopefully these pointers will help you feel more informed and more at ease with your decision.

Are you ready?
Let’s go! To start, let’s make a list of all the things you want to take with you and allow plenty of time for travel. This includes giving yourself regular rest breaks and toilet stops, and extra time for any delays. Bring along a travel pillow that can help relieve your back on hard chairs, or use it as a headrest during delays. Also, be sure to find out about medical facilities that are close to your hotel or Airbnb.

What shall you wear?
The right clothes, shoes and accessories can make a huge difference. If you're likely to do lots of walking, pack comfortable shoes or trainers that provide ample support. It would ideal if they slip on and off easily, in case bending down becomes difficult. If you're going away for more than a few weeks, pack clothes that have space for your bump to grow.

Wait, what is DVT?
Long-haul flights of four hours or more can increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT). DVT refers to when a blood clot forms in the leg or pelvis. Here are a few precautions you can take.

  • Do frequent leg exercises while seated every 30 minutes or hourly
  • Walk around the airplane’s cabin if the flight is smooth
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Drink plenty of water to avoid any cramps
  • Wear leg compression stockings (it’s not the most fashionable item, but it helps to prevent DVT)

If you have an increased risk of DVT, do discuss travel plans with your doctor.

The right nom-noms
Try to stick to recommended foods and eat at places with good hygiene. Every traveller does this anyway, but it is worth the extra effort when pregnant. You could also pack some of your favourite health snacks. This way, you can consume them when necessary, as your blood glucose level will change frequently during pregnancy.

It’s your holiday and you can just chill if you want to!
Try to include several breaks a day, so that you can just relax and put your feet up. This is your time to recharge before your bundle of joy arrives! If you are feeling tired, just call for room service, enjoy a warm bath or go for a leisurely swim. Remember, this is your babymoon! So, go on and enjoy it your way! #MyPregnancyMyWay

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