What causes motion sickness and how to fix it?

Motion sickness or motion sickness is a travel-related disorder that causes nausea and vomiting. People who suffer from this problem have difficulty when traveling, and this can sometimes be the case for all types of vehicles.

Currently, the origin of this disorder is not fully known. Indeed, it is difficult to explain why some individuals can make long journeys without noticeable problems while others cannot prevent themselves from being ill. Also, for some, motion sickness only manifests itself in certain types of vehicle and not in others.

A few theories have been put forward to try to explain the onset of the symptoms of motion sickness.

Balance and/or posture?

The “sensory conflict theory” blames the disturbance of the balance system as being at the origin of motion sickness. The balance being maintained by several sensory organs, the contradictory information coming from our senses would be at the origin of the discomfort. For example, the eyes and the inner ear indicate that the body is moving, while one is seated and motionless.

Another theory suggests the involvement of posture control in motion sickness. According to this theory, our inability to adjust our posture to reduce the mismatch between the information captured by our different senses is at the origin of discomforts such as nausea. However, there is not enough evidence to support this assumption.

Multiple causes

In reality, motion sickness depends on several factors and each person is affected in a different way. Existing disorders such as migraine or Meniere’s disease, for example, increase the likelihood of suffering from motion sickness. Furthermore, some research suggests that age and gender are also predisposing factors for motion sickness. The latter would be at its peak around the age of 9 to 10 years, especially in women. The type of vehicle would also have some bearing on motion sickness.

Note that there are also “cyber-illnesses”, similar to motion sickness, which occur when playing video games or watching a 3D film. The principle is basically the same.

To limit motion sickness, it is recommended to minimize the mismatch between the information received by the different senses. For example, you should avoid reading during the trip because it causes a discrepancy between what you see and what you feel. Instead, focus on the landscape. It is also advisable to ventilate the vehicle well, avoid heavy meals before a long journey, and stop from time to time. If symptoms persist, medication can also be taken.

SOURCE: sciencealert

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