Commercial air travel poses no special risks to a healthy pregnant woman or her fetus.Each airline has policies regarding pregnancy and flying; it is always safest to check with the airline when booking reservations because some will require medical forms to be completed. International travel may be permitted until the 32nd week of gestation. A pregnant woman should be advised always to carry documentation stating her expected date of delivery.
During the flight:
An aisle seat at the bulkhead will provide the most space and comfort, but a seat over the wing in the midplane region will give the smoothest ride;
Take a walk every half hour during a smooth flight and
The safety belt should always be fastened at the pelvic level;
Flex and extend ankles frequently to prevent phlebitis;
Fluids should be taken liberally because of the dehydrating effect of the low humidity in aircraft cabins.
Air travel is not recommended for infants less than 7 days old. For premature babies, medical advice should be sought in each case. Changes in cabin air pressure may cause distress to infants, which can be alleviated by feeding or giving a pacifier to stimulate swallowing. Infants are more susceptible to dehydration than older children and adults. Adequate fluid intake should be maintained before and during the flight. Extra fluid (water or diluted juice) should be provided periodically during long flights.
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