How To Manage Motion Sickness

Is nausea your usual travelling companion? Experts say that motion sickness prevention is the best strategy to counter the symptoms characteristic of it, but you still can make an attempt to alleviate the situation using both non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatments. Here is what you can try doing if nausea prevents you from enjoying your trip, be it travelling by car, plane, train or ship.

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Is nausea your usual travelling companion? Experts say that motion sickness prevention is the best strategy to counter the symptoms characteristic of it, but you still can make an attempt to alleviate the situation using both non-pharmacological and pharmacological treatments. Here is what you can try doing if nausea prevents you from enjoying your trip, be it travelling by car, plane, train or ship.

General notes

It is worthy of note that prevention is a much better strategy to manage motion sickness: once symptoms are here, it will be more difficult to alleviate them. That is why it is recommended to take appropriate medicines in advance. One of such medicines is Drapamine. It must also be noted that all medicines must be taken with respect to your age and other drugs you take. Another factor to consider when taking medicines is how long your trip is going to be.

However, it is often the case that you are already feeling unwell and had no opportunity to take Drapamine or other drug in advance. How should one do in such cases?

There is a set of techniques which are recommended by Medscape experts. In most people, they do help alleviate the symptoms (at least to some extent), but there is no guarantee, as treatment of every disease or disorder requires an individual approach.

You can even make an attempt to acclimatize before the trip by means of visiting the dock and the ship itself early. Such a strategy can help you make the symptoms less severe.

Here is what you can try doing to get rid of nausea and other symptoms while on board.

Vehicle matters

If there is an opportunity to choose which vehicle to travel by, opt for large ships or front car seats. Train must be modern, so that they can accelerate smoothly. The key is to reduce the amount of motion: the fewer motion stimuli there are, the better you will feel.

Positioning

If you are already on an old bus or ship with significant movement, you should find the most stable place in the vessel or vehicle. You should locate yourself as close to the waterline as possible, if it’s a ship. The centerline of the vessel is the most stable place, whereas high locations and rooms below the deck are likely to bring you more motion sickness symptoms.

Support your head to make it move less often. If you cannot reduce the amount of motion, you can try adjusting its characteristics.
Face in-line with the direction the vehicle is moving. It will help you minimize off-axis motion and thus alleviate the symptoms. Another option is reclining your head back 30o – only one axis will be involved in the motion.

When visual stimuli conflict, it makes you feel unwell. Find a place where you can watch the horizon. Being in closed spaces is not a good idea. While you are looking forward, you can anticipate the vehicle/vessel movements, which makes your body feel better. By the way, some people can even benefit from piloting the vessel.

Another way to reduce the symptoms is to close your eyes.

Activities to avoid

You should not read, watch videos or do some other close work. If you cannot close your eyes because of some activity, try wearing sunglasses, as it may help reduce visual input.

Do your best to avoid activities which imply being in places where you can be affected by noxious stimuli, including odors (hydrocarbons and emesis are to be avoided completely, when possible).

Do not consume alcohol and drinks which contain caffeine. Smoking is also a bad idea. Breathing control techniques may also help.
Avoiding dehydration is another important aspect of fighting motion sickness symptoms. Make sure you have appropriate clothes so that you can stay warm without sweating.

Actually, even talking about the issue can aggravate the situation, so try to think and talk about something else. Eat light meals and drink enough water.

Following these rules can help you reduce motion sickness symptoms or eliminate them completely.

References:

Motion Sickness Treatment & Management – Emedicine.medscape.com
Motion Sickness –Umm.edu
Motion Sickness: More Than Nausea And Vomiting – Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

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