Motion sickness is a common problem starting in childhood. If your child gets dizzy and nauseated in the car, he is also likely to become sea sick, train sick, air sick, and have a miserable time at the amusement park. This problem is due to an over-sensitivity of the equilibrium center found in the inner ear. The tendency to have motion sickness is inherited and usually lifelong. Some people are so sensitive, they develop motion sickness from lying on a water bed. Keep in mind the following points:
- First: Never blame your child for the nausea and vomiting. It's not something he can control.
- Second: For symptoms, have your child lie down, and keep a vomiting pan handy. Give only sips of clear fluids until the stomach settles down. If your child goes to sleep, all the better. Usually, children don't vomit more than once, and all symptoms disappear in about 4 hours.
- Third: Prevent future motion sickness by giving an anti-motion-sickness pill such as Dramamine about an hour before traveling or going to an amusement park. These tablets give 6 hours of protection. You won't need a prescription for Dramamine.
- Fourth: During car trips, have your child look out the window. Be sure your child does not look at books or play games during car travel. Entertain him with audio tapes of stories you have recorded.
Finally: Remember that sea travel is simply the nemesis of people with motion sickness. Any degree of choppy water will cause your child to become sicker than a dog.
Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. It is provided for educational purposes only. You assume full responsibility for how you choose to use this information.
Author and Senior Reviewer: Barton D. Schmitt, M.D. FAAP
Last Review: 6/1/2008
Last Revised: 11/1/2003
Copyright 1994-2008 Barton Schmitt, M.D. Parent Advice Messages.