I asked the same question at Denver airport 2 weeks ago ! As I went through my husband saw and he asked another TSA guy and they both said the same thing. It's totally safe, it's not 'xray' it's more like cell phone technology. Don't worry, it's fine !
Remember how in the 60's they told pregnant women it was safe to take thalidimide? Look how that turned out. I am not saying it's not safe, of cousre they say it's safe. But I don't trust anyone that works for the government! So I tell them to pat me down instead. Tell them you are pregnant and it is your right to asked to be pat down instead, they also have to have a woman do it, they are not allowed to let a man do it. And I am talking about the new x-ray machines not the metal detectors.
I believe that they are safe as they have such stringent guidelines to follow in terms of radiation emitting from the machines in public places... but if you are worried speak to the airport staff and ask if there is any way you dont have to walk through it... in my experience these people are usually pretty reasonable.
I looked into this myself as I went longhaul during my last pregnancy (at 5 months) and had several flight changes. Couldn't find any evidence to say they were unsafe so just walked through them as normal.
The radiation why flying (due to the altitude) was more of a worry to me, but again the stuff I read suggested it was neligible.
I am flying in Sept and assuming it's the usual type of metal detector machine, and not the x-ray one they refer to in that article above, I will just walk through as normal...and I am the most paranoid person I know! I would never knowingly expose myself to an x-ray during pregnancy though, so if it's the other type they can pat me Beth down.
I went on my honeymoon when I was 5 weeks, and I asked my doctor, because I would be taking multiple flights at 5, 6 and 8 weeks.
He says that the old style are just metal detectors (the new ones that show a pic of your entire body without clothes on weren't around last year, so I didn't ask about them). But he said that if I was concerned, I could refuse it and ask for a pat-down instead, because I was pregnant. They can't force you to walk through if you think it mau harm your baby.
I went on holiday when i was 5-6 weeks (i didn't know i was pregnant) and obviously went through them twice, i also cut my back and thumb open and needed x-rays when back in the UK. I told my MW about it and she said the risk is just about non existant. Don't worry x
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