We just got back from a road trip with our four kids. Being on the road with kids got me thinking about road trips during various pregnancies. Many families travel by car due to restrictions on air travel or the high cost of plane tickets for families. Here are some things to consider if you hit the road during your nine months.
Sitting in the car for long periods of time isn’t ever fun, but could be potentially dangerous during pregnancy. Stop at a rest area and get out of the car every two hours to stretch your legs. This is great for the kids too, since they get tired of sitting still. You don’t have to stop for a long time, but be sure to take regular breaks.
The air in the car is drying, so stay well hydrated. Pack a cooler with water bottles for the whole family. Sip on your water throughout the trip and during rest breaks.
When you stop to stretch your legs, use the bathroom. Holding it has been linked to contractions of the uterus. This is more likely with habitual waiting than a one time thing, so don’t panic if it takes a bit of time to find a place to stop. Just be sure to stop regularly.
While you are packing the cooler, add some healthy snacks, such as fresh fruit, individual cups of yogurt, string cheese, trail mix and fresh vegetables. These things all travel well and will give you a steady supply of healthy snacks, which helps you avoid eating junk in shops along the road.
Bring anything that will help you feel comfortable, such as pillows, blankets and something to keep you entertained. Books, puzzle books or your favorite CDs will help pass the time.
Before you head out, schedule a prenatal visit with your midwife or doctor. If you are traveling in the third trimester, take along a copy of your medical records. Have a great trip!