Motion Sickness Prevention
- What It Is
- Risk Factors
- Living With
- User Questions
- Alternative Treatment
- Care Guide
- Questions for Your Doctor
- When to Contact a Doctor
- Find a Doctor
- Resource Guide
How to Prevent Motion Sickness
Strategies to prevent motion sickness include:
Medications that prevent motion sickness should be taken at least one hour before you begin a trip or ride. Side effects that the medications commonly cause often include drowsiness and lack of alertness or trouble concentrating.
- Over-the-counter antihistamines-work by calming excess stimulation of the inner ear
- Prescription scopolamine-works slowly over a period of about three days (available in many forms, including patches or pills)
- Prescription sedative or tranquilizer-may be available if you suffer from severe or recurrent motion sickness
Commonly used alternative remedies include:
- Pressure patches-worn on the wrists to put pressure on the pulse points of the wrist. Their effectiveness has not been proven.
- Ginger-used for centuries to treat motion sickness. While research is not conclusive, several clinical trials suggest that ginger may help with motion sickness.
Preparing for the Ride
- Avoid the following before a trip or ride:
- Heavy meals or spicy foods
- Excess alcohol
- Lack of sleep
- During a trip or ride avoid:
- Reading (if you are prone to motion sickness)
- Looking at others who are experiencing motion sickness
- Talking about motion sickness
- Large or heavy meal
- During long trips, eat small, frequent meals or snacks consisting of easily digestible food or drink.
- During short trips, avoid eating or drinking.
- Excess alcohol
- Looking at moving objects-Look at nonmoving objects in the distance.
- During a trip in a car:
- Sit in the front seat and look out the windshield.
- Drive if possible.
- Ask the driver to slow down or stop if you begin to feel sick.
- During a plane or train ride, look out a window.
- In a plane, sit over the wing for a less bumpy ride.
- During a boat ride:
- Sit towards the middle of the boat.
- Get plenty of fresh air.
- Do not stay below deck for long periods of time (especially on smaller boats).
- Avoid amusement park and virtual reality rides if you are prone to motion sickness.