Are you planning on flying with a baby? Great! Plane travel can lead to an unforgettable holiday, but it can also be fraught with danger when travelling with a little one. Images of a baby screaming his head off from take-off to landing spring to mind.
One of the biggest challenges for infant flyers is the inevitable effects of changes to cabin pressure. This can be both confusing and painful for a baby, so it is usually accompanied by uncontrollable screaming.
Thankfully, there are some fairly simple steps that can be taken to alleviate the pain. Introducing The Flying Baby Survival Kit!
The kit is very simple. It is a zip-lock back with a few items inside that can help provide relief to your baby as the cabin pressure changes during flight, especially during ascent and descent. Inside my kit are three items:
- Rusk stick
- Plastic bath toy (frog)
These three items can be chewed on, licked and sucked by your baby throughout the flight. We found that Hannah (our 11 month-old daughter) would pick and choose between the items when she felt a bit uncomfortable. The frog in particular was a great success – she stuck its entire head in her mouth and sucked away, which appeared to relieve her pain almost immediately (yes, fellow travellers found the sight incredibly adorable).
My advice is to choose a few things that are familiar and comforting to your baby. In the weeks prior to travel keep an eye out for the things he most likes sticking in his mouth, especially those small plastic toys that they often use for teething.
It is not a magic cure-all (Hannah was still very fussy on her second flight), but it should help. I also recommend a large supply of favourite food, and breast or bottle feeding may also help.