Travelling during pregnancy sometimes become inevitable, so a proper understanding of how to make your travel safe and comfortable is essential.
The ideal time to travel long distances during pregnancy:
If the pregnant mother does not experience any complication during her pregnancy, traveling during pregnancy is never a concern. But on the other hand, if the expectant mother has some complication that she is aware of, already diagnosed by the doctor then the ideal time to travel is the second trimester. In the first trimester, the pregnant mom can suffer from severe morning sickness, which might worsen with traveling. In the last trimester, fatigue can make travel difficult. It is always important for the mother to keep exhaustion at bay.
Adapting through various modes of travel:
Cars: If you intend to travel by car, make sure you take the following precautions
- Restrict your travel to only 5-6 hours
- Fasten your seat belts and the additional waist belts if provided
- Check whether the airbags are intact before your start
- Adjust the car seat comfortably and make sure you’re relaxed and cosy through the travel
- Stop the car every 1 ½ hours and take a small stroll and stretch your legs before you proceed
- Carry enough water and tangy fresh juices to stay hydrated
- Carry simple home cooked food to nibble on the way
Buses: In case bus is your mode of transport, make sure you don’t forget to take the following precautions:
- Buses usually have narrow aisles and small restrooms, so as much as possible try to avoid very long bus travels
- In case there is an unavoidable necessity to take a bus, make sure you are seated when the bus is moving
- If you are using the restroom be sure to grip onto the rails carefully to keep your balance
- Stay hydrated by sipping a lot of water
- If possible, put your luggage beneath your feet and straighten your leg on it than leaving your legs hanging down for long
- Request the driver to have an intermittent stop-over whenever needed, in order to use a restroom
Train: Compared to the buses, travelling by trains is way more comfortable for pregnant moms. But make sure you make the following adaptations as you travel by train, to minimize discomforts.
- Rail travel can be slightly more convenient than buses. Since trains have a bigger room to navigate, it is a bit easier for the expectant mother to move around. She can use the restroom that is available in both sides of the coach. While the train is in motion , one must walk slowly, holding the rails.
- Stretch your feet whenever possible to make sure there is enough blood circulation to your feet
Flight: Travelling by air is mostly safe for pregnant women. However, adherence to the below said tips can make your trip more safe and comfortable.
- Most airlines permit pregnant women to travel till the completion of the 8th month
- Further, if there is a necessity to travel during the nine month and if you don’t have any complications, get a clearance from your doctor to proceed
- Like buses, flights also have a narrow aisle, so make sure you don’t lose balance as you commute to the rest rooms
- Rest rooms are also small, so do hold onto the rails to retain balance
- There are high chances of turbulence during the travel, so make sure your seat belts are buckled to prevent unnecessary jolts
- Stretch your feet in the cabins and keep moving your ankle and feet through the travel
- If you have a long flight wear compression stocking during the travel to avoid the feet from getting swollen
- Choose to travel by major airlines with pressurized cabins and try to avoid private jets. This is encouraged because private jets fly at a higher altitude above 7000 feet that can cause huge pressure differences and discomfort in pregnant women.
- Generally, “The royal college of obstetricians and gynaecologists and International Air travel association” recommend pregnant women to avoid air travel after 37th week of pregnancy
- If you already have a complicated pregnancy and there is a risk of preterm labour try avoiding air travel from 32 weeks onwards
- Carry all your medications, health drinks and foods to stay fit and hydrated during your travel
Things to carry to make your travel comfortable during pregnancy
- During travel wear comfortable loose fitting, simple, cotton clothing
- Carry your favorite cushion or pillow along
- Carry all your medication, vitamins and health drinks
- Carry enough fruits and home-cooked foods
- Carry all your prenatal medical records and doctor recommendations