Vacation season is here, but traveling while pregnant can be exhausting and uncomfortable. To smooth your way, here are tips from Virginia R. Lupo, M.D., chairwoman of the department of obstetrics and gynecology at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis.
Fly when it’s safest and most comfortable (weeks 14–28), though you’re generally cleared for takeoff until your eighth month. You don’t want to go into labor in mid-air. Book an aisle seat near the front of the plane, where the ride is less bumpy and there’s easy access to the bathroom. Get up and stretch at least once an hour to reduce the risk of leg swelling and blood clots (chances increase during pregnancy).
Don’t spend more than six hours in the car each day, and take regular breaks to stretch, walk around and go to the bathroom. Always buckle your seat belt, fastening the lap belt below your belly to avoid putting excess pressure on your abdomen. Pack healthy snacks and plenty of water; road food is tempting but not the best choice during pregnancy.
Check out our top 10 tips for traveling with your baby, plus nifty new products to make going places easier.