Healthy Living (Wellness & Prevention)

Motion Sickness, an Unpleasant Sensation

Written by Dr. Vandana Andrews and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

 
Image: Motion Sickness, an Unpleasant Sensation

Motion sickness or kinetosis (also known as car sickness, sea sickness, air sickness) occurs when two motion messages to the brain conflict. One motion message comes from the inner ear that controls balance and another motion message is from the eyes. During this change in position caused by travel, these two motion messages conflict, thereby causing motion sickness. Most people who have experienced motion sickness in the past should ask a health care provider how to prevent another episode from occurring in the future.

Risk Factor

Prior history of motion sickness causes stress and anxiety, which in turn, increases the risk of motion sickness.

Symptoms

Dizziness, nausea, and occasionally vomiting, fatigue and pallor (looking pale), non-vertiginous dizziness associated symptoms like headache, malaise (tiredness), cold diaphoresis (cold sweat) and flushing.

Tips to Prevent Motion Sickness

  • Avoid excessive food and liquids that make you feel unusually full. Heavy food, spicy, fat-rich food makes one more sick.
  • Sit in the front seat of the car.
  • Do not read while traveling.
  • Open a vent or source of fresh air if possible.
  • Avoid travel during difficult weather conditions (For example, storm, large waves, air turbulence).
  • Avoid traveling in rough terrain, where there will be frequent acceleration and deceleration.
  • Also, avoid travel where the visibility is reduced.

Favorable Position with Least Motion

  • Plane: Over the wing.
  • Car: Front seat (driver or passenger).
  • Boat: The level closest to the water surface with face towards the waves and away from the rocking bow.
  • Bus: Sit near the front at the lowest level facing forward.
  • Train: Sit at the lowest level facing forward.

Treatment

Over the counter medication, Meclizine can be very effective. Medications such as Meclizine, Promethazine, and Cyclizine can be very helpful.

Would you like to travel without motion sickness? Consult a general practitioner online for help --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/general-practitioner

Last reviewed at: 19.Sep.2018

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