Dr AvinashTank, is a super-specialist (MCh) Laparoscopic Gastro-intestinal Surgeon,

Motion Sickness: Causes & Solution

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Motion Sickness: Causes & Solution

Motion Sickness – it’s a term that can turn a pleasant journey into an uncomfortable ordeal. In this article, we’ll explore what motion sickness: causes and solutions.

Definition of Motion Sickness

Motion sickness, also known as kinetosis, is a condition characterized by a sense of dizziness, nausea, and discomfort.

It typically occurs when there is a disconnect between what your eyes perceive and the motion your inner ear senses.

This sensory conflict can happen during various types of travel, leading to the unpleasant symptoms associated with motion sickness.

Causes of Motion Sickness

Understanding the underlying causes of motion sickness is crucial to finding effective prevention and treatment strategies.

Some common factors contributing to motion sickness include:

Sensory Mismatch: When your eyes perceive motion, but your inner ear (vestibular system) detects no or conflicting motion signals, it can trigger motion sickness.
Travel Conditions: Bumpy roads, turbulent flights, or choppy waters can exacerbate motion sickness.
Visual Focus: Reading or looking at screens inside a moving vehicle can confuse your senses and lead to motion sickness.
Inner Ear Sensitivity: Some individuals have a heightened sensitivity in their inner ear, making them more prone to motion sickness.
Anxiety and Stress: Emotional factors can contribute to motion sickness, making the symptoms more pronounced.

Symptoms of Motion Sickness

Motion sickness can manifest through various symptoms, which may include:

Nausea and vomiting
Dizziness and lightheadedness
Pallor (pale skin)
Cold sweats
Increased salivation

Diagnosis of Motion Sickness

Diagnosing motion sickness is typically straightforward, as it is based on the reported symptoms and the individual’s exposure to motion-inducing situations.

Medical tests are rarely necessary to diagnose this condition.

Treatment and Prevention

Fortunately, several strategies can help manage motion sickness, including:

Medications: Over-the-counter or prescription medications, such as dimenhydrinate (Dramamine) or meclizine (Bonine), can alleviate symptoms.
Behavioral Techniques: Techniques like focusing on the horizon, avoiding reading or screens, and staying well-hydrated can help.
Acupressure Bands: Wristbands designed for acupressure can provide relief for some individuals.
Fresh Air and Ventilation: Ensure good airflow to reduce nausea.
Ginger: Ginger supplements or ginger candies may help ease symptoms.
Gradual Exposure: If you’re prone to motion sickness, start with shorter trips to build tolerance.

When to Consult a Doctor

While motion sickness is generally not a serious medical concern, it can significantly impact your travel experiences.

If you find that over-the-counter remedies are ineffective or your symptoms are severe, consulting a healthcare professional is advisable.


Motion sickness can affect anyone, but understanding its causes and implementing prevention techniques can make travel more comfortable.
By staying prepared and utilizing the strategies mentioned in this article, you can minimize the discomfort of motion sickness and enjoy your journeys to the fullest.

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