Travel during early pregnancy

Old Sep 14, 12, 2:15 pm
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Travel during early pregnancy

Every search turns up questions on flying in the third trimester and such...

Any issues with long haul international travel during the early first trimester? I know that sounds like a basic question, but this was a happy surprise so I'm not up on my pregnancy knowledge. Ok, I'm actually clueless. Anything I need to be aware of? I'm sort of worried about morning sickness popping up and how to deal with it on a plane and overseas, but other advice is welcome.

ETA: No issues from my doctor, but of course she doesn't even want to see me until 9 weeks.

Last edited by lovely15; Sep 14, 12 at 2:44 pm
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Old Sep 17, 12, 11:25 am
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Moving to Travel with Children Forum for more appropriate input.

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Last edited by JDiver; Sep 17, 12 at 11:32 am
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Old Sep 17, 12, 11:31 am
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Cabin altitude is about 8,000 feet MSL (Mean Sea Level), so you will become more easily dehydrated. You may want to consider upping your water input - in Business or First, that's easy, but in a busy Economy cabin, you may want to buy bottled water airside before you board (or take an empty bottle through security and fill it airside).

For morning or even motion sickness, most aircraft have "burp bags" in the seat pocket in front of you (where also dwell the safety information card, etc.)

There is also plenty of information (even reliable information ) available online. "Here, let me Google that for you" click here reveals information from the Mayo Clinic, www.pregnancy-info.net, etc.
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Old Sep 17, 12, 12:21 pm
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I flew a few times while pregnant with no problems. Morning sickness for me was total misery but I had a bit of warning, felt queasy for a few minutes before the moment of truth. You might be one of the lucky ones though, not every pregnancy brings morning sickness. Im not sure if this will help you but I always had very strong mints available as they did help clear the queasy feelings.
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Old Sep 17, 12, 12:43 pm
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Morning sickness would be the only issue. And that is totally unpredictable. For the first three months I was a total mess. The one time I flew during the first semester I was completely miserable, but then I was completely miserable 24/7!

If you are worried and you do get sick, speak to your health care provider. There is safe medication available that will help with nauseau. The home remedy touted is ginger, I can't stand ginger, but the medication ( I took zofran and one other, can't remember the name) was a life saver.
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Old Sep 18, 12, 2:04 am
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Possible issues are barfing, bras and your breath.

Morning sickness, aka sudden, spontaneous stomach heaving at random times, is something everybody has heard of and there are a million and one folk remedies, a few of which help. Make sure to ask for a large supply of those little bags as you board the plane. Better too many than too few...

Also make sure you pack a spare shirt in your carry-on, just in case you miss the little bag and a toothbrush, breath mints/ginger thingies or mouthwash for after, because that is not a taste sensation you want to keep.

Not sure how far along you might be, but something many don't think of is how your bra size will change. By 8 weeks I was up a size and found getting fitted for a maternity bra (no glamour there at all! ) made a big difference. Also, loose but not maternity clothing seemed to help lessen the nausea as anything tight over the abdomen, especially when sitting, made it worse.

Congrats!
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Old Sep 18, 12, 2:17 am
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I bring my own plastic bags for my kids...

Sounds like I wasn't the only one who suffered MS! Hardly just in the morning, is it?? But even if you don't, lucky you but you might find yourself getting motion sickness more easily. Just stay seated for take-off, turbulence and if it gets bumpy, get back to your seat. Look forward, breathe and don't lean over to get anything out of your bag (try to think of those plastic bags ahead of time).

ITA about the clothes. Don't buy maternity yet but you do want things loose. You might need to make some fashion "adjustments" and go for elastic and floppy stuff (wear a nice scarf and earrings!) Also, think about your shoes. You may not have bloating yet but you can find your clothes and shoes getting snug and uncomfortable, long before you show.

IF you can schedule an apt. a few days before you fly, that would be good. Once we did have to make an emergency landing in Iceland to let off a poor woman whose pregnancy was not going to continue. Let's not think of that but better to get any bad news from your own doctor before getting near an airport.
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Old Sep 18, 12, 2:31 am
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Consider getting travel insurance which covers maternity issues. My wife and I discovered that AIU provided such a policy ex Japan, and we ended up needing it during a visit to NYC. I shudder to think what the hospital bill might have been, but we gave them the insurance company's details and never heard another word. Most countries have cheaper health care than the US, but don't necessarily offer it cheaply to tourists.
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Old Sep 18, 12, 6:21 pm
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I never had MS, don't hate me, but in early pregnancy my big issue was the bathroom. It seemed like I had to go every 5 minutes. So take every opportunity to go when you can!
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Old Sep 19, 12, 5:09 pm
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Originally Posted by joejones View Post
Consider getting travel insurance which covers maternity issues. My wife and I discovered that AIU provided such a policy ex Japan, and we ended up needing it during a visit to NYC. I shudder to think what the hospital bill might have been, but we gave them the insurance company's details and never heard another word. Most countries have cheaper health care than the US, but don't necessarily offer it cheaply to tourists.
Re: morning sickness...it doesn't typically begin until about 6-7 weeks, and for most of us, has subsided by 14-15 weeks. I have never vomited in two pregnancies, but I had a nagging nausea that was often made worse by letting my stomach get too *empty*. If this is the case with you, make sure you have a supply of non-salty snacks at the ready.

Re: health insurance -- are maternity issues specifically excluded from most travel insurance? Back when I was pregnant with kid #1, I took out a policy (can't remember the company, sorry!) that specifically covered travel after 26 weeks, so I just assumed that it was automatically covered prior to that. I think it cost me about $90 for 2 weeks of coverage, back in 2008.

This year, I traveled to Indonesia for work at 24 weeks, and my employer (who is very diligent about risk-management) never said boo to me about a supplemental policy. Don't know if they did something without telling me, or whether I was automatically covered under the employer's standard policy.
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Old Sep 19, 12, 9:18 pm
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Originally Posted by icedancer View Post
Re: morning sickness...it doesn't typically begin until about 6-7 weeks, and for most of us, has subsided by 14-15 weeks. I have never vomited in two pregnancies, but I had a nagging nausea that was often made worse by letting my stomach get too *empty*. If this is the case with you, make sure you have a supply of non-salty snacks at the ready.
Ditto the part about not letting your stomach get too empty, that was me, and the queasiness was around the clock.

Peppermint tea also helped me, so if that or some other kind of tea is helpful to you, pack some teabags- it isn't usually too difficult to acquire hot water! (Do read up on what kinds of tea are OK, there are varying opinions about different herbs, I don't remember it all, but peppermint was OK.)

Also, a problem for me was getting too hot! I almost passed out the day my husband had surgery (I guess I was into my second trimester then, but it probably still applies) because I was wearing too much clothing. Temperature control on planes is an iffy proposition anyway (you know, it will be extremely hot during boarding but then arctic during the flight, or whatever), so definitely layer!
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Old Sep 20, 12, 8:09 am
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In the first 24 weeks, my wife flew 2 TATLs, 2 inter-europes, 1 uk domestic and 1 helicopter. No problems. No morning sickness either.
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Old Sep 20, 12, 9:22 am
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Originally Posted by icedancer View Post
Re: health insurance -- are maternity issues specifically excluded from most travel insurance?
That was what my wife discovered when she looked closely at the fine print. AIU was the only policy which would cover her out of Japan. The situation out of the US might be different of course.
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Old Sep 20, 12, 10:48 am
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Thanks for the advice. I should have mentioned that by early, I meant very, very early (4 weeks). Morning sickness hasn't kicked in yet and I am kind of terrified it will while I'm gone. I'll pack so peppermint tea and ginger.

I think I'm good on the insurance with military insurance + International SOS. Tricare covers everything overseas and their website doesn't mention a maternity exclusion. Looks like ISOS doesn't cover pregnancy except life threatening situations in the first 24 weeks, so I'd just have to come up with cash to pay the doctor before Tricare reimbursed me. Does that sound accurate?
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Old Sep 23, 12, 6:37 am
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Originally Posted by VickiSoCal View Post
I never had MS, don't hate me, but in early pregnancy my big issue was the bathroom. It seemed like I had to go every 5 minutes. So take every opportunity to go when you can!
I had the same problem. An aisle seat is must.
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