NEW YORK (Biztravel.com) - As women increasingly delay childbearing until their careers are established, pregnant business travelers are becoming part of everyday life.
If you're pregnant and need to travel extensively, learn to plan ahead to ensure your comfort, safety, and peak performance. If you discuss travel plans with your doctor and take extra precautions, your trip will be business as usual.
Here are some tips:
Be safe. Always wear your seat belt. But don't worry about airport security devices - they won't harm your baby.
Be comfortable. Travel in loose-fitting, layered clothing so you can adjust to cramped spaces and varying temperatures. Wear low-heeled shoes, especially since your back is vulnerable during pregnancy. Walk around every hour or two to avoid swelling. Support your lower back with a pillow.
Carry your own mineral water so you can avoid dehydration and come prepared with your own healthful snacks. Give your body extra time to adjust to time-zone, climate and altitude differences.
Be prepared. Check with your doctor about immunizations necessary for overseas travel and whether they are safe during pregnancy. Carry your medical records with you and always bring your doctor's name and telephone number.
It might also be a good idea to ask for references in the area to which you are traveling, especially if you plan on a stay of more than three or four days.
Be flexible. If possible, try to avoid flying during your first trimester when you may be more subject to morning sickness and fatigue. If you must fly, do so later in the day and try to sit toward the front of the plane or over the wings where motion won't be as noticeable. Always check with your doctor before taking any motion-sickness medication.
The best time to travel during pregnancy is the second trimester, when morning sickness and fatigue will be gone, but the extra bulk of pregnancy has not yet reached its height. Most physicians suggest that you do not fly at all beyond 33 weeks. It's not unsafe to fly after that, but the imminence of delivery can make it especially inconvenient.