Car, plane and sea sickness result from the overstimulation of the canals of the inner ear which regulate the body’s system of balance. Waves of nausea are the principal symptom, usually resulting in vomiting. These are sometimes accompanied by cold sweats and giddiness. People vary in their susceptibility and, with regular travel, can learn to overcome the problem in most cases. Children, for example, are more prone to car sickness than adults. Motion sickness is much more likely to occur in an enclosed space with insufficient ventilation, such as in a cabin of a ship. At sea, get up on deck when possible; in a car or bus, open the windows; and when travelling by plane, keep the ventilator on full.

Avoid alcohol, rich, aromatic food and excessive tobacco and do not attempt to read until your body has adapted to the motion. Do not try to focus your eyes on objects moving around you.

To prevent and treat motion sickness, administer strong ginger tea before travelling and carry a supply for the journey. This simple anti-nausea medicine is highly effective and can safely be given to young children.

Some motion sickness has emotional causes such as fear of flying. In this case, counselling may help.


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