Appropriate age for travel
It is important to keep in mind your infant’s age before planning your travel. Generally, air travel is not advisable for infants who are less than six weeks old. This is because a newborn is more prone to air-borne infections in an enclosed environment such as the air cabin. Be sure to get your pediatrician’s go-ahead before deciding upon a travel.
It is recommended that your infant travel in a secured safety seat during a flight. You can use your child’s car seat if it is certified for air travel. Keeping your baby in your lap also makes the baby feel secure and comfortable during the flight.
A change in the air pressure during a flight can cause changes in middle ear pressure leading to ear pain. Allowing your baby to suck a bottle or a pacifier will help equalize the air pressure, especially during takeoff and landing.
This issue does not affect otherwise healthy infants. Babies who have respiratory problems may develop irregular breathing due to the low oxygen level in the flight environment. Consult with your doctor as to what to do if such a situation arises. Depending upon the case, supplemental oxygen is recommended for babies who have respiratory difficulties.
Engaging your infant during flight
Most infants sense a change in their environment and tend to get cranky during flights. If moving through the cabin is allowed, take occasional walk up and down the aisle to soothe your baby. A pacifier or a teething ring can sometimes be all that an infant might want to stop crying. Carrying stuffed toys and brightly colored picture books can keep your baby occupied for sometime. Keep changing these activities every few minutes before the baby gets bored and actually starts to whimper.
A well-fed infant is often less fussy. Apart from breastfeeding your infant, you might want to take some water, formula, and juices to supplement. If your baby is a few weeks old, it is advisable to check with the pediatrician on the recommended foods for the infant.
Knowing what to expect during an air travel and taking necessary precautions makes traveling with an infant trouble free.