Can you read or watch movies without feeling sick while travelling in a moving vehicle? If yes, then you are fortunate. According to Cleveland Clinic, an estimated one in three people get motion sickness at some point especially when they try to read a book or watch a movie while travelling in a car, boat, train, or plane.
The onset of Motion Sickness can be abrupt, characterized by a sensation of unease and sweating. This can progress to feelings of light-headedness, and queasiness, and eventually result in vomiting. The surprising truth is that motion sickness affects approximately 30% of the population with over 66% experiencing it in extreme conditions.
At the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), where Astronauts are hurled into space at 17,000 miles per hour, motion sickness is a serious problem.
If you’re someone who often experiences motion sickness and is tired of feeling queasy while travelling, either by road or air, or sea, you may be interested in learning about some simple and effective ways to permanently alleviate this uncomfortable condition. Read on, as we explore 10 simple ways how to cure motion sickness permanently.
10 Simple Ways How to Cure Motion Sickness Permanently
Desensitization therapy is a proven method for permanently curing motion sickness. This involves gradually exposing yourself to short bursts of activities that trigger symptoms and gradually increasing the duration of exposure over time. For example, if reading a book while in a moving vehicle causes nausea, reduce the time spent reading to 5 minutes and then take a break. Repeat the 5-minute interval over several sessions, then increase to 10 minutes. With time, the body will adapt to the activity without experiencing the symptoms again. There is no way that motion sickness can be cured permanently, however, there are some long-term solutions that can help a great deal in improving this feeling. The following solutions can also help in reducing the motion sickness symptoms from occurring again in the future:
1. Take Supplements
According to research, ginger and peppermint are beneficial herbs that aid in eliminating motion sickness and nausea. Inhaling the calming aromas of mint, ginger, or lavender and consuming hard candies infused with peppermint or ginger provides significant relief. It is recommended to take 350 mg of peppermint twice a day and 550 mg of ginger once a day for optimal results.
2. Get into Position
The position of your seat in any mode of transportation can impact the severity of motion sickness. Opting for the front seat of a car, forward-facing cars on a train, the upper deck of a boat, or winged seats on a plane may provide a smoother ride, reducing the likelihood of experiencing discomfort.
3. Distract Yourself with Music or Have a Conversation
To divert your attention from how you’re feeling due to motion sickness, you can either turn on the radio, wear your headsets or air pods or start a conversation. By listening to music, you may find relief from the physical symptoms of motion sickness, such as nausea.
Stimulating an acupressure point along your wrist called the sixth point (P6) of pressure may give you quick relief. Place the index, middle and ring fingers of your right hand on the inside of your left wrist, starting under the crease. Apply firm pressure on one or both wrists for a few seconds until the symptoms pass. This remedy when performed again and again helps a lot in answering the question of how to cure motion sickness permanently.
5. Curb your Consumption and Stay Hydrated
Watch your consumption of foods, drinks and alcohol before and during travel. Eat light meals or snacks 24 hours before travelling and try to avoid heavy meals. Heavy, spicy or fatty foods may worsen motion sickness in some people. Drinking plenty of water helps too.
6. Avoid the Triggers
Avoid triggers that can make motion sickness worse, such as reading while in motion, looking at electronic screens while in motion, or consuming alcohol or heavy meals before travelling.
7. Mind-Body Techniques
Techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, and visualization may help alleviate motion sickness symptoms by calming the mind and body. These techniques focus on the connection between the mind and body, and how this connection can be used to control the body’s response to motion. These techniques can also be practised before and during travel to help prevent the onset of motion sickness or to relieve symptoms when they occur.
8. Drink Carbonated Beverages or Water
To alleviate motion sickness, you can try drinking cold water or a carbonated beverage, such as ginger ale. Avoid consuming caffeinated drinks like sodas, which can exacerbate dehydration and worsen your nausea. Alternatively, you may opt for apple juice or milk as another viable option.
9. Nibble on Crackers
Nibbling on a light snack, such as saltine crackers, while on a journey can help alleviate motion sickness. Avoid consuming heavy, greasy, or acidic foods as they take longer to digest and may aggravate your sickness. Other snack choices that you may consider include cereal, apples, bananas, bread, and other grains.
10. Face the Direction you’re Going and Focus
One effective way to alleviate motion sickness is to face the direction you’re moving in and focus your attention on a fixed point in the distance. By facing forward and focusing on a stable object in the distance, your brain can better integrate the sensory signals it’s receiving, reducing the confusion that can lead to motion sickness. This technique is particularly effective when combined with other strategies, such as maintaining a good posture and controlling your breathing.
How Long Does Motion Sickness Last?
All symptoms of motion sickness usually go away under 4 hours after stopping the motion, however, the duration of motion sickness varies depending on the individual and the severity of their symptoms. Generally, motion sickness lasts from a few minutes to several hours, and in some extreme cases, it may persist for days. The symptoms may subside once the motion stops, or it may take some time to recover. Many children feel better as soon as the vehicle they are riding in stops, and they’re able to get out and walk around. However, this isn’t always a guarantee. Even if they’ve been motionless for a while, the symptoms can persist throughout the day. And in extreme cases, kids might even suffer from motion sickness for days after driving has stopped. With appropriate management techniques such as medication, rest, and hydration, the symptoms can often be relieved, and recovery time can be shortened.
What if motion sickness is not going away?
While for most people, motion sickness is a temporary condition that goes away once the journey is over, for others, it can persist even after they have reached their destination. This raises the question: what if motion sickness is not going away?
If it ever gets to the point where the symptoms of motion sickness persist, even after several days, it is important to seek immediate medical attention.
What is the Root Cause of Motion Sickness?
The root cause of motion sickness stems from when the eyes and inner ear send different signals to the brain. The vestibular system inside the ear contributes to balance and spatial orientation. Tiny hairs inside the canal detect the movement of a fluid inside it allowing you to orient yourself.
The most common theory scientists have given as to the root cause of motion sickness has to do with mismatched sensory signals. When the brain senses movement by receiving signals from motion-detecting parts of the body: the eyes, inner ears, muscles and joints, these parts send conflicting information to the brain. Consequently, the brain doesn’t know whether the body is in motion or stationary. It is the brain’s confused reaction that induces nausea.
When travelling in a car, for instance, the body receives 2 conflicting signals. The eyes are seeing the inside of the vehicle which looks stationary, while the ear is telling the brain that the body is accelerating. The ear actually has another important function besides hearing. In its innermost part lies a group of structures known as the vestibular system which gives us our sense of balance and movement.
Inside it are 3 semicircular tubules that sense rotation; one for each dimension of space and 2 hairline sacs filled with fluid. So when you are in motion, the fluid shifts and tickles the hairs telling your brain whether you’re moving horizontally or vertically. With all these combined, your body can sense which direction you’re moving in, how much you’ve accelerated, and at what angle. So while travelling in a car, your vestibular system accurately detects your movement but your eyes fail to perceive it especially if fixated on a book. This is the underlying reason for experiencing motion sickness.
In conclusion, motion sickness can be a debilitating condition that affects many people, but it is not impossible to cure. By implementing these 10 simple strategies, including adjusting your posture, focusing on a fixed point, and using natural remedies, you can significantly reduce or even eliminate the symptoms of motion sickness. While some of these techniques may take time to master, with patience and consistency, you can overcome this condition and enjoy travelling and other activities without fear of nausea and dizziness.