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A temporary unpleasant feeling characterized by dizziness, nausea and vomiting that occurs while traveling


Children of all ages.

Signs & Symptons

  • Dizziness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Weakness and unsteadiness


Travel by any means, especially train, car, airplane or boat. There are Semicircular canals in the inner ear. These fluid-filled canals maintain balance of the body. Irregular motion causes fluid changes in the semicircular canals of the inner ear, which transmit signals to the brain’s vomiting center causing vomiting.

Risk Increases With

  • Ear disorders.
  • Smoky environment or poor ventilation.


  • Don’t give large meals or drink before and during travel.
  • If in a bus sit on the front seats, near a window in the train and areas of least motion if in an airplane (usually over the wings) or boat.
  • If possible, let your child recline in his seat.
  • Teach your child to breathe slowly and deeply.
  • If possible, avoid areas where others are smoking.
  • On a bus, try to improve air circulation.
  • Give medication to prevent motion sickness at least half an hour before you travel.

Diagnostic Measures

  • Typical symptoms in the past.
  • History and physical exam by a doctor, if motion sickness is recurrent and spoils your outings.

Possible Complications

  • Dehydration from vomiting.
  • Falls and injuries from unsteadiness.

Probable Outcomes

Spontaneous recovery when the trip is over.


General Measures

Psychological factors contribute to motion sickness. Try to resolve concerns about motion sickness before leaving home. Maintain a positive attitude.


For minor discomfort, you may use non-prescription drugs, such as dimenhydrinate (Dramamine) before and during travel.


To minimize symptoms during travel, let your child rest in a reclining position and avoid reading or playing video games while travelling.


Give to eat lightly or not at all before and during brief trips. For longer trips, let him sip frequently on liquids to maintain fluid intake – don’t give large drinks -.

Contact your Doctor

You plan to travel with your child who has had disabling motion sickness in the past.