Car Sickness in Toddlers ( and adults)

I think most of us go through life with the odd – I feel a bit sick in the back of the car. But have a thought for those of us who have suffered with it all their lives like me, my daughter and now my granddaughter. (It is hereditary you know). My father always drove the car so it wasn’t an issue for him, however I remember a time when he was sitting in a boat still tied up to the dock, and my poor dad being seasick over the side.
Many years ago when I was a child I clearly remember being in the car going over a long and winding hill moaning I want to be sick, I want to be sick, my mother saying we are almost there just hang on, which being an obedient child I did. We parked the car by a river ( seemed to take ages to find the right spot) and my mother got out the picnic blanket and laid it down on the ground. At this point I felt it the right time to ask the question again – can I be sick now? To which offhandedly she said yes not even bothering to look at me, and not moving an inch I was promptly sick all over the picnic blanket.
She even took me to the doctor it was so bad – middle ear he said, didn’t feel the need to elaborate it was the 60’s doctors were Gods, nothing to be done. Now I know that it is the eyes and the ears getting conflicting clues as to how fast and in what direct the body is moving.
So… then it was my daughters turn and now it was the 70’s. Of course her being sick in the car didn’t exactly go well with my problems of being sick so my husband had to do the clean job sometimes for both of us, and there was still no remedy available for toddlers.
It is common for motion sickness to stop by the time you are 12 years old, but that wasn’t the case in our family.
So now it is the 21st century and my poor granddaughter suffers the same fate and while there is still no real remedy for toddlers we have learnt alot. We have learnt more about things that can be done to make life easier when travelling, and in some cases avoid the sickness altogether.
I am going to share with you my research and hopefully if this affliction effects your little ones it may be of some help and therefore travelling with children can become a little more pleasant.
Some children get it unexpectedly having not be affected with it before, so be prepared with a towel or bag and keep a bottle of drinking water in the car, especially if you have suffered with it the odds are it will affect your child at some time.
• Drive slowly on winding roads
• Keep the car at a comfortable temperature
• Fresh air is good – try to have a window open
• Do not let them read or watch DVD’s
• Sing and/or listen to music
• Try and travel at night while they sleep
• Get them to look towards the horizon if possible, staring straight ahead
• Do not give them a heavy meal before they travel offer light snacks and or fruit – bananas and apples are good. Ginger biscuits can help, also peppermint
• Do not smoke in the car
• Turn the air vents to their face
• Stop frequently and let the child out of the car to walk around a little

Not every child responds to the same remedy and it is trial and error to see what works best.
For older children and adults there are a number of travel sickness remedies, tablets and wristbands which seem to work very well.
Hints for other types of motion sickness
• Avoid greasy meals and alcohol 24 hours before you fly
• Just have light snacks and plain water
• Sit towards the front or close to the wing

• Try to get a cabin on one of the upper decks
• If on deck keep eyes fixed on the horizon or a piece of land if visible
• Do not eat a heavy meal
• If on deck where others are being ill make sure you are not downwind of them ( easy mistake to make when rushing to the side of the boat)

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