Friday, June 09, 2017

How to deal with motion sickness

Our family--except for Dad--was prone to car sickness. Mom always brought along a "spit bowl" (she could not stand to say the word vomit).

For his part, Dad's rather warped sense of humor led him to describe giant barbecue dinners while his family laid flopped on the seat, green as peas.

Summer--with car trips, boat trips, and amusement park rides--is motion sickness central.

Basically,, your body combines info from your eyes with info from the part of you on the ground and tries to mix that with input from the fluid-filled cavities in your inner ear's vestibular system.

When all this info does not agree--the body may say, hmmmm, might as well throw up.

Researchers at the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center are trying to figure out why some people have this problem and others don't.

--Genetics may play a role.

--Age definitely does. The whirling ride that was fun when you were a teen may be sickening as an adult.

--The vestibular system degenerates as you age.

--Some people can suppress the feeling--others no.

Some tips:

--Roll down the windows in a car--fresh air.

--Focus on a point on the horizon, not things going by the window.

--Get a windo seat on flights.

--Never sit backwards on a train.

--Close your eyes.

--Stay well-hydrated.

--Get plenty of sleep before a motion sickness type activity.

--Breathe deeply.

--Relax each part of your body in turn.

And I would add--don't even think about reading or looking at a map! That is where I lose it.

There are also over the country drugs you can take--but they may make you drowsy. This would be bad in a driver--but usually drivers don't get sick. That was my dad's secret.

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