Treatments and preventive measures for motion sickness

Motion sickness triggers a sensation of dizziness, often caused when one is traveling for long hours via boat, car, plane, or train. In such a situation, the body’s sensory organs deliver conflicting messages to the brain, which causes nausea, lightheadedness, or wooziness. One might also experience headaches due to motion sickness. This condition can affect anyone, but children aged from 2 to 12, pregnant women, people with a migraine, and people on certain types of medications are more likely to suffer from it. The good part is that this condition will quickly resolve on its own and typically doesn’t require any medical attention.

Treating motion sickness
There are several over-the-counter medications to treat motion sickness. Most of these prevent the onset of its symptoms and induce sleep. Therefore, these are not to be taken if one is driving. Seeking the counsel of a general physician is crucial before using such medications if one is already suffering from some health condition.

If one doesn’t have the medication when the symptoms kick in, they can attempt using the following tips to gain quick relief:

  • Fresh air
    If one is continuously confined in a vehicle, they should take short breaks and get outside for some fresh air. This is because stale air in the vehicle can often aggravate the symptom of nausea.
  • Gazing at the horizon
    Simply looking out of the window and staring at the horizon in the direction in which the vehicle is moving can help reestablish the harmony between the brain and the sensory organs. This will help one gain balance, retrieving the sense of motion.
  • Napping
    To resolve the mixed signals caused by the inner ear and visual senses, one can simply close their eyes for some time or just nap. This will allow the senses and brain to resynchronize.
  • Ginger
    Consuming a bit of ginger can help alleviate the symptoms of motion sickness, such as nausea and wooziness. If chewing ginger seems unpleasant, one can opt for alternatives like powdered ginger or ginger tea. There is still some debate about ginger being effective for motion sickness, but it is a safe option to use.

Preventing motion sickness
If one is prone to motion sickness while traveling, they can try the following preventive measures to keep the symptoms at bay:

  • Planning ahead: Making small arrangements in advance can help one avoid motion sickness, or at least assuage its impact. For instance, if one is traveling by air, they should book a window or wing seat. On the other hand, if one is traveling by car, buses, trains or boats, they should sit in the front. Likewise, on a cruise, one should ideally book a cabin at water level situated in the front or middle area of the vessel. One should also avoid reading in a vehicle while traveling.
  • Driving: While riding shotgun is a good idea, one can also try driving. Many people who complain about motion sickness often notice that they don’t experience its symptoms when they are driving.
  • Rest: When planning to travel, it is essential to get adequate rest. Likewise, one should avoid having alcohol the night before as it can to lead to anxiety, dehydration, and headache, which will make one increasingly susceptible to motion sickness.