The Travel Factory Blog
Motion Sickness...The Bane Of Travel
The moment we visit with someone about considering a cruise vacation, they make the comment that they haven't entertained the idea because they didn't want their vacation ruined because of motion sickness. I can understand their concern.....I've been there. But things are different now on cruise ships compared to an oil tanker back in 1962.
Motion sickness is caused by fluid movement in your inner ear, which controls your sense of equilibrium. Once your inner ear acclimatized to motion over time, or with the help of medication, the symptoms disappear. I remember that the first time I boarded that fully loaded oil tanker in Corpus Christi, for the first 3 days of stormy weather, I was spending more time near a latrine than at my job. But after that, I was on it for the next 88 days in a hurricane and some other ocean storms and did not get sick....so obviously I acclimated.
We have been on multiple cruises over the years as well as airplane flights and have never had motion sickness problems again. There are some things you can do to help prevent motion sickness. In ships or planes, try to sit in the middle where there is the least motion and in cars or buses, sit as close to the front as possible. Keep your eyes steady and focused on a steady point in the distance. Reading usually doesn't help, neither will eating greasy food or drinking alcohol.
There are several natural remedies that help in treating and preventing motion sickness. Some folks get relief with the wrist bands that presses on an point on your wrist to relieve these symptoms. Some studies have shown that ginger reduces the effects of motion sickness. Another popular remedy is to drink a Coke with some saltine crackers.
My wife is very prone to motion sickness, so much so that she refused to go cruising with me for more than 5 years after I had been in the business. I read in some travel trade magazine that a patch worn behind the ear, scopolamine patch, would do the trick. To get a patch required a prescription, so we secured the prescription and made cruise reservations. We have been on more than 70 cruises since 1981, she has worn a patch on every one of them, and has never been sick!!! For her, those things work. One gets two patches with the prescription, so for a week's cruise, she puts one on Sunday then the other one on Wed. The only negative she has experienced is that while reading her book or Kindle, around Thursday or Friday the print will get a little blurry, but with proper arm adjustment she can continue reading.
Of course other medication like Meclizine, Ativert, or Dramamine can be taken to help with this problem, but the main side effect of these pills is drowsiness.
Our best tip is that if you would like to take a cruise and the notion that you might have motion sickness, you'll never know unless you try it, so see your doctor for a prescription for the patch and visit with your travel agent who, no doubt, would suggest an Alaska cruise along the Inside Passage.
By now, your favorite travel agent should be located at The Travel Factory, 4150 Southwest Drive, Ste. 120. Many questions are easily answered face-to-face, so call and make sure we are available at 698-1421 or 800-760-4040.