Traveling during pregnancy can be a concern for a lot of women. Generally, you can travel safely during pregnancy up until 36 weeks pregnant as long as you and baby are healthy. Ask your OBGYN in Jacksonville about your specific travel plans, but there are some general guidelines you can follow.
When Is the Best Time to Travel While Pregnant?
The ideal time to travel while pregnant is during the second semester (14-28 weeks) because there are fewer risks of complications. The second semester is usually when morning sickness decreases, and energy levels go up. It is important to listen to your body and consult your doctor at Women’s Physicians of Jacksonville during travel to figure out what is best for you.
When to Avoid Travel During Pregnancy
It is best not to travel during pregnancy if you are experiencing any complications. Those complications could include preeclampsia, premature rupture of membranes and preterm labor. Traveling is also not recommended for women pregnant with multiples.
Certain places should definitely be avoided when traveling because they can pose serious health risks. Areas that have been exposed to Zika and Malaria outbreaks should be avoided. The Zika virus is spread through mosquitoes and can cause serious birth defects. Malaria is also transmitted through mosquitoes and can be dangerous for pregnant women. Talk to your OBGYN in Jacksonville for more information on where it is unsafe to travel while pregnant.
Is There Anything I Need to Do Before Traveling While Pregnant?
There are certain things you should make sure you do before going on vacation anywhere:
- Schedule a check-up with your physician right before you leave.
- Make sure to have all medications (over-the-counter and prescribed) and prenatal vitamins.
- Make sure you are up to date on any vaccines you may need.
- Travel the most efficient way, if possible.
- Have a plan to contact your OBGYN in Jacksonville and know where the local hospital is if complications arise.
When Should I Seek Medical Attention While Traveling?
You never know when emergencies can happen during pregnancy. If you experience any of these complications seek medical attention right away:
- Vaginal bleeding
- Pelvic/abdominal pain or contractions
- Severe vomiting or diarrhea
- Water breaks
- Signs of preeclampsia
- Signs of DVT (deep vein thrombosis)
Things to Consider When Traveling by Car
When traveling by car it is important to keep trips as short as possible. If you’re on a longer road trip, make sure to stop frequently to stretch your legs to avoid DVT. DVT is blood clots forming in the legs from sitting too long. This can be a serious complication if not treated. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids and don’t wear form-fitting clothing. As always, make sure to wear your seatbelt correctly and remained buckled at all times.
Things to Consider When Traveling by Plane
When traveling by plane it is important to check the airline’s policy on traveling while pregnant. Some airlines have different policies and may require a medical certificate to fly. Talk to your OBGYN in Jacksonville if a medical certificate is necessary for your travel plans. It is recommended to get an aisle seat so you can easily move around and stretch. Always remained buckled when sitting down. One thing to avoid while flying is gas-producing foods and or carbonated drinks. Due to the changes in pressure, this can cause discomfort in pregnant women.
Things to Consider When Traveling by Ship
If you are traveling by ship, make sure there is a doctor on board the ship. Also, make sure you know where medical facilities are at all the ports in case of an emergency. Norovirus can be a concern for people traveling on ships, and especially for pregnant women. This is a virus that can cause severe nausea and vomiting for up to two days. The virus is easily transferable, so make sure you are always washing your hands to avoid contamination.
Schedule an Appointment with Your OBGYN in Jacksonville
If you are planning on traveling soon, schedule your appointment with any of the caring physicians at Women’s Physicians of Jacksonville. For more information or to schedule your appointment, call us today at (904) 296-2441.