How To Avoid Motion Sickness?

Stop the car! Stop the car! Shouted Aditi while seated at the back of her car as she wanted to throw up. Like everyone, Aditi decided to spend their Christmas and New Year holidays this year in the snow-capped mountains of Himachal with her family. But this discomfort, nausea and vomiting which Aditi faces whenever she travels long distance especially in the hills, ruins her holiday every time.

Known as motion sickness, it is nothing but a sensation of throwing up and discomfort that one feels while traveling by road, air or sea. This happens especially on a long journey but some people may experience in short journeys as well.

What Causes Motion Sickness?

Motion sickness is usually caused by a disturbance in the inner ear. The movement of the vehicle causes this turbulence as a result of which the inner ear loses its balance because of which you start feeling nauseated. This is followed by a sensation of feeling disturbed and discomfort in the stomach and head. It is not just kids but even adults face motion sickness when travelling in a car, bus or train. And this is the reason, why most people fear going for a long vacation by travelling in a car or bus.  

So if you also face motion sickness and don’t want to spoil your holidays, here  are a few simple ways to avoid it and enjoy your vacation with fun and frolic.

Tips To Follow Before Travel

1. Try not to think too much about the journey beforehand. Think about the fun you will have after reaching your destination as this will help in diverting your mind and help you to calm before starting off the journey.

2. Wear loose and comfortable clothes as it helps to breathe your body and skin. Avoid tight-fitting and uncomfortable dresses and jeans. The more fresh air you breathe in, the more the better you might feel.

3. Avoid applying strong perfumes or lotions before and during the journey as the strong smell can worsen your situation.

4. Avoid traveling on an empty stomach or too full stomach. Just have some light salty crackers before heading straight in a car to calm your stomach.

5. Avoid alcohol a day or a few hours before your journey, if you have a habit of drinking. The same rule applies while travelling in a car/bus/train.

6. Do not drink tea, coffee or milk, or too much water as it might cause you to throw up due to the discomfort in the stomach.

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Tips During Travel

1. While traveling by car, sit in the front seat and look at the distant scenery. You can even close your eyes and relax.

2. Keep your car windows slightly open to get a continuous flow of fresh air. It is one of the best ways to soothe the discomfort and nauseated feeling which is common when the windows are closed.

3. Look straight and do not look at your side or at the back as it helps to engage your mind and lessen the effect of the motion on your brain.

4. Do not read or browse your phone as it can make you more nauseated and lead to discomfort further worsening the condition.

5. Try to divert your mind and keep talking with your fellow travelers. You can participate in dumcharades, antakshari, or card games in a car/bus/train as it keeps your mind busy and prevents you from thinking about your motion sickness.

6. Do not smoke and don’t allow your fellow travelers to smoke to prevent unnecessary discomfort when travelling.

7. Stay away from oily and spicy food before and during the journey. The smell of rich food may trigger the feeling of nausea.

8. Carry some fresh or dried salted ginger and keep chewing small pieces whenever you feel a little sick. Sniffing some fresh lemon can also make you feel good.

9. Don’t drink too much water at one go. Just keep sipping water or lemon and sugar water in intervals to calm down the urge to throw up.

10. Have some oranges rubbed with some black salt. Chewing on whole green cardamom may also help.

11. Fennel or Saunf is an herb which is used to cure nausea and is an excellent remedy for motion sickness. Chew some sauf on your trip.

12. Keep some tamarind candies handy with you or carry some honey candies as sucking them can help you to soothe the discomfort.

13. Take deep breaths and do some breathing exercises at regular intervals to ease the feeling and help you feel better

14.Try to take naps at intervals if you feel you can’t tolerate the urge or feel a constant urge that you might puke. 

15. You can also try acupressure. Consider three finger widths from the edge of your wrist on the inner arm. With your thumb, apply pressure on this spot and hold it there for some time. Do this repeatedly. This is the acupressure point for nausea and works well for most people in reducing the symptoms of motion sickness.

16. Take regular breaks, if you are travelling by car as it can help you to get out of that zone. Also, step out and stretch to relax your muscles and breathe some fresh air before you continue your journey.

17. If nothing works, you can take some medicine to avoid motion sickness with your doctor’s consult. Do not self-medicate as it may lead to unwanted side-effects.

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Tips for Air and Water Travel

1. Try following the above-listed tips if you are traveling by air or water along with the ones given below:

2. While traveling by flight, try to take an aisle seat to avoid looking out of the window. This is because you might feel dizzy if you look outside, especially when the aircraft is taking a turn while ascending or descending.

3. Also, try to avoid a back seat as you might face too many jerks in this area of the aircraft.

4. Do move your hands, feet or take a walk whenever seatbelt signs are off. This will divert your mind making you feel less nauseated.

5. Try to sit in the front or middle cabin which is near the water level, if you are travelling by ship. The simple reason being these areas face less movements.

Motion sickness isn’t a serious medical condition and can be prevented. Take precautions and remember you will feel better eventually. Take care and enjoy your travel!

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