Asking for Your Best Motion Sickness Solutions

You all are a wealth of knowledge, and I’d love to know what are your best motion sickness relief helps.

I used to be able to work on my laptop on trips and get a lot accomplished. Notice I said the words used to. What changed? Who knows. But one thing is sure, motion sickness is now a problem for me. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a quick trip to Kansas City or a road trip.

I’ll give you a little backstory on what I currently do:

  • PsiBands (they work to some extent but not enough to make travel totally comfortable: the link was Titus2’s Amazon’s Affiliate link, see the Privacy Policy)
  • Gum
  • Water
  • Snacks (I don’t do well if I’m at all hungry in the car)
  • Dramamine (Less-Drowsy formula isn’t so effective versus the regular, which is quite effective for me. The part I dislike is how crazy tired I feel with the regular Dramamine, but even with it, I don’t sleep well in a moving vehicle.)
  • Avoid looking at my phone
  • Driving (but that isn’t always feasible)

My family would also tell you the vehicle has to stay at a cool temperature. I’m sorry for their sake, as they often have to break out the sweatshirts during summer travel to help me.

So, I’d love to hear what you’ve found to be effective for motion sickness. I’d like to try some other things!

Sarah

“Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of
another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous.”
1 Peter 3:8

156 thoughts on “Asking for Your Best Motion Sickness Solutions”

  1. Hi Sarah,
    Some of my children struggle with this too. We roll down the windows a little to let in fresh air and encourage them to look straight ahead and focus on something in the distance. Eye spy if you will.. and that seems to help.

  2. Sucking or chewing on something containing mint or ginger calms the tummy, especially when traveling.

  3. For me, riding in the back seat is a huge no-no. Even if I’m not driving I must be in the front seat.

  4. I would say, sit in the front seat and watch the road as much as possible. I think that is why driving helps because your body is more prepared about what is coming next. Eat little and often. I know you are in the car with family but listening to an audio book may also help to keep your mind off the unpleasant feeling of sickness.

  5. You might try peppermint essential oil, either diluted and applied directly to wrists/behind ears, or purchase a little vent clip that diffuses the oil into the vehicle. Also, try to sit as close to the front of the vehicle as possible. It seems motion sickness is exasperated by sitting in the rear.

  6. Hi Sarah!
    I get car sick too, but thankfully I am able to drive most of the time. These have really helped me with queasiness (car rides and morning sickness). I’ve heard they are similar to the drops cancer patients are given when going through treatment. They taste very yummy too! I order them from Amazon.
    Three Lollies Preggie Pop Drops Assorted for Morning Sickness Relief Organic, 48 Count

  7. I’m looking forward to hearing everyone’s solutions!!! Our 5 year old got sick 4 times Sunday (twice on way to Church and twice on his way home)…he normally throws up 1-2 times. He gets upset (understandably) if we have to go somewhere. Thankfully he is very good with a bucket …but if there is a solution we would love to know!

    1. A friend’a child could have no dairy products before riding in a car. It also helps to be able to “see out”.

  8. My mom has motion sickness and she has always taken dramamine, but she only takes a portion of it, I think 1/4 of the tablet which might help cut the side effects for you.

  9. We use a motion sickness essential oil combination. We buy it at Wal-Mart. It is sold where motion sickness pills are sold. You rub a drop behind each ear. I also like to a drop under my nose too. Chew or sucking on ginger candy also helps.

  10. Hi Sarah,

    That is awful to hear. I like snacking on candied ginger for motion sickness, tea or even ginger candies may have the same effect.
    Hopefully, you’ll find something that really works for you!

    Keep up the good work and God bless,

    Cara

  11. Avoid dairy, especially the day of your trip. This makes a huge difference for my kids that are prone to car sickness.

  12. Ginger Candy. Have an eye exam and have your doctor check your ears, in fact, get a check-up. What changes have occurred that this has worsened? There are also patches you can wear behind your ear to help with motion sickness. It is a lousy feeling!! Hope this helps.

  13. I just wanted to offer something you may want to look into. Our family is starting to use essential oils. I am just beginning so I can’t give you the specifics for motion sickness but I do know there are some of them that are supposed to aid with that issue. The brand we chose was Doterra because of the testing their oils go through. So far they have proven extremely beneficial for our seasonal allergies and my husband’s back pain. I too have motion sickness when traveling and always have to ride in the front seat. I usually can not read for any length of time so I will be researching for this issue as well. Many blessings as you work through this trial.

  14. My children and husband suffer from motion sickness, and we’ve recently been using something from Walmart called Motion-Eaze, which us a tiny little bottle of an essential oil mixture. You rub a tiny drop right behind your ears. It was only a couple of dollars and seems to help the most of all the things we’ve tried. Sea bands have also been helpful….hope you find a good solution that helps! Blessings!

    1. I have also used this (Motion-Eaze) with some success. For me it didn’t entirely eliminate the symptoms, but reduced them to a more manageable level (i.e. not throwing up).
      Having dealt with this since I was a young child (I once threw up into the lap of a poor unsuspecting stranger on an airplane), I have done research into what causes motion sickness and from that developed some strategies that help minimize the effects. Motion sickness is usually caused by conflicting signals from our senses. If we are in a vehicle or boat that is moving, and simultaneously reading or otherwise focused on our immediate surroundings, our inner ears perceive that we are moving, but our eyes perceive that we are sitting still. To the best of my understanding this dichotomy is why we experience motion sickness. The best remedy I have found, is to close my eyes. This eliminates the conflict of information in the brain. Unfortunately, it is not always possible or practical, especially as a mom, to do this. The next most helpful solution, and one that works in all but the worst situations, is to sit where I have a clear, and large view of the passing scenery, such as a front seat, and focusing on the outdoors. I have also always dealt with difficulty in adjusting to rapid altitude changes, and in my mind the two may be connected, as both deal with the inner ear. I have wondered if reducing any inflammation in the inner ears/Eustachian tubes would also eliminate the motion sickness. Maybe dietary changes would be a start? It would be interesting to know whether others who suffer with motion sickness also have difficulty handling rapid altitude changes, such as occur with air travel or vehicle travel through mountainous areas.

      1. Lisa,

        I missed replying to this. I find it very interesting your mention of altitude sickness. In the past maybe 7 years, I’ve become altitude sick (increasing) when climbing mountains. It does not matter how much water I drink (which is typically one reason you get altitude sick is not being hydrated) or how many snacks on the mountain, I get quite sick. Thus the reason I didn’t climb a 14er last year. Strength training wise, I can totally do it. But the altitude sickness I get either enroute or back at the cabin is miserable. It just depends how worth it the climb is. 🙂

  15. Hi Sarah! Sorry to hear that you suffer from motion sickness.
    I suffer from that as well. I have tried just about everything too.
    Recently I have heard that Benadryl works well. I have not tried it as of yet but I do plan to my next road trip.
    Another person also suggested a small piece of ginger root in tea just before I leave & small snacking along the way.
    I just thought I’d share what I have heard from others.
    Also the Sea Bands use to work so well for me then I think as I used them so often they became less effective.
    I hope you do find something that works well for you. Motion sickness is awful.
    Please update if you find something that works

    1. I love sea bands as well! But make sure you are wearing both and they are on the correct spot! Apply extra pressure to the pressure point activator with your opposite thumbs for extra relief! Essential oils are always good to add on too. I haven’t tried this yet but try adding the nausea oils on the pressure points with the sea bands. I do reflexology and it is double effective combined with essential oils on the pressure points! Any of them that others have listed will help, peppermint, ginger, lemon, orange, a digestive/nausea blend. We use a blend called Digize from Young Living and get the vitality one so that we can ingest it for added relief. It doesn’t smell or taste wonderful but works every time! Blessings on your journey!

    2. Thank you, Rosemarie. Benadryl would probably have the same effect as Dramamine :), so it should be helpful. I’ll definitely update folks on what I find to be most helpful from the suggestions.

  16. Hopewell oils has a blend called Digestive Support. It has helped us many times in the past. Our daughter used to vomit on windy roads as she was in the 2nd or 3rd rows of the van. She rubs one drop of this near her belly button and we are good to go. I’ve always wondered if the oils really do anything and then this one actually had hard evidence to prove they do!

    Hopewell oils is a family company we believe in supporting. They love Jesus and give God glory for healing.

  17. Sarah,
    I an sorry to hear of your motion sickness issues. This happened to me with aging and 2 major ear surgeries. I have to sit in the front of the vehicle, and watch where we are going. I have not found a good solution to cure it for myself, but the things you mentioned help. Once the motion sickness sets in you can feel icky the rest of the day. Peppermint essential oil in a roller ball can help pass the nauseated feeling but my advice is to keep your eyes on the road. I am interested to see what others think. I wonder what a chiropractor would advise.

  18. I struggle with car sickness as well and have found that Bonine works well for me. It doesn’t make me drozy like Dramamine does but works the same. Glad to know that I’m not the only one that deals with it.

    1. Do you have a certain brand of sea bands you’d recommend? I tried one that was like a sea band but it didn’t put as much pressure on my wrists as the PSI, so it didn’t seem to help.

  19. Sorry to hear you are experiencing this. I used to have motion sickness when I was a child and took Dramamine. I know ginger tablets can be very effective for motion sickness, so perhaps trying something more natural like that. You mentioned looking at your phone or laptop, but I know that looking at things in the car, unfortunately even reading, can cause nausea. If possible, try sitting up in the front seat where you have a better view of the distance. I agree about the cooler temperatures in the car. I might also suggest some very quiet, calm and soothing type of instrumental music that you might listen to. Hope you find something that works for you!

  20. Oh, how I can relate! I’ve done most of what you tried & driving is the best option for me, but as you say, it isn’t always feasible. This is what I DON”T do: I don’t look out the side window (an occasional glance is all), I don’t turn around & look at someone in the back seat. For some reason that triggers motion sickness for me.
    Occasionally I’ve been able to read, but if we’re going around a big curve or coming to sudden halt, I quickly close my eyes or just look straight out the front window.
    When my kids were little, I would get motion sickness as my husband was backing out of the driveway while I was turning around to hand a toddler something. It could make me feel yuck for MANY miles on the road. I’m sure this isn’t much help, but look for triggers & do best to compensate ahead of time. You might have to claim the front seat in order to be able to see forward out the window!!

  21. We have a daughter who struggles with motion sickness and now travels with a bottle of ginger-ale. Also sitting in the front as opposed to the back of the car helps.

  22. I’ve given my boys soft peppermint. It helps but we don’t take long trips. We also have rolled down windows. I wonder if emetrol would help. My mother in law takes that for nausea and it’ works very well for that but I don’t know if it helps motion type nausea.
    I hope you can find a solution!

  23. The only thing that works for me is dramamine, I get the non drowsy one and take it half an hour before I need it. Motion sickness is horrible! Good Luck!

    1. Thank you! I tried non-drowsy on the way to Colorado last year, but you can only take 1 pill every 24 hours. Let’s just say it wasn’t totally effective, and then I couldn’t take anymore, lol. But, mountain roads are the extreme as far as motion sickness goes.

  24. My eldest gets severe motion sickness, the things we’ve found that help are: open windows (not fun in winter!), sitting either in the front passenger seat or in the rear middle seat so he can look out of the front window and phenergan (but that also makes him drowsy). Together, they allow him to get through most journeys. I really feel for you, motion sickness can make travel utterly miserable.

  25. You’re going to LOVE my secret! SINGING!
    If you sing aloud with your family, your breathing pattern is much different than when speaking, and it actually helps with nausea. I discovered this on a long trip up a curvy mountain road.
    Also, fresh air as opposed to vented air. This was especially true for me during my second pregnancy. In the middle of winter, I would crack the window and stick my face toward the top so my family didn’t have to suffer! My husband teased me every time, but it worked!

  26. Did you buy a new car since the switch? The bigger the vehicle (a van vs a car) the wider the wheel base. The wider the base the less motion sickness. We have a 12 passenger van in which no one gets sick, where as with our mini van several children got sick regularly. Sitting in the front passenger seat with a full stomach looking continually at the road is my advice.

    1. Willemina,

      I’ve actually been struggling with it for 5+ years. But, interesting point. We used to have a 12 passenger (3+ years ago). I do think it’s worse since we haven’t had it now that you mention it.

  27. I have had motion sickness all my life. What helps in the car is to sit in front and look forward. No reading or writing of any kind. For flying, take the regular Dramamine.

    1. Tami,

      Thank you! Yes, flights are interesting, especially if they’re warm to begin with. I really need a window seat, and if I happen to not get one, it’s quite imperative I look OUT still, lol. 🙂

      1. I always get an aisle seat to use the bathroom easier. I go to Europe every summer to study and would never be able to travel with Dramamine.

  28. Meclezine has worked for my family. It can be purchased OTC under the name Bonine. It has worked well without the drowsiness associated with Dramamine. It takes about a half hour to take effect. Praying you can find some relief.

  29. I’m sorry to hear your having travel sickness Sarah. I’ve heard sucking on a ginger candy can help, as can drinking ginger tea. There is a company called “The Ginger People” and they have chewy and hard ginger candies in different ginger strengths. They are tasty in my opinion, and maybe may help you. I sure hope they do! God Bless.

  30. Hi, Sarah. If this is something that has suddenly come up, I would recommend going to the doctor. If that is not an option, it helps to sit in the front seat at all times. If you can focus on one thing while the car is moving (maybe a spot on the dashboard) instead of letting your eyes wander, you can stave off a lot of motion sickness. This helps in the backseat as well; I just stare at the headrest when I start feeling sick. I’ve personally never been able to read or look at a phone in the car, so I would continue not doing that as well.

  31. Growing up I had bad motion sickness but I always sat in back of the car. I’d have to sleep as much as I could to avoid issues. My sister could read but just looking at a book would make me sick. Since I’m married and ride up front now- I don’t have issues. I can do some looking down but I have found having chronic neck/shoulder tension doesn’t help. So I’m trying to do neck exercises to relief the tension. There are days that I feel sick at my stomach and I’m not driving. My husband and I can go antique shopping and the up/down motion of looking at the shelves can aggravate it. So since it has come on later in life do you feel you may have neck/muscle tension especially since we do so much typing and looking at computers? If you aren’t opposed to chiropractors – that might help resolve. For me I am looking into a highly recommended massage therapist who works out of her home and went to school after her husband died from cancer because he told her she helped him through his suffering. Sorry this might not be helpful but just wanted to share. Feel free to email me with questions.

    1. Nancy,

      Those are some great thoughts. I do know my neck tends to be tense in general, as the chiropractor has told me so! I definitely am on my computer a lot at home. Thank you for the idea.

  32. My husband and two of our children have had motion sickness all their lives. The two who also suffer from migraines with vertigo get it worse as there seems to be some neurological connection. The only thing that completely keeps it at bay for them is to not read anything at all. However, my husband is able to tolerate a little reading as a passenger but only if he takes frequent breaks to look out the window for a bit. While we have not found anything to completely cure it, these are things we have tried which do help to some degree:
    -Bonine (similar to Dramamine but little to no drowsiness)
    -Upspring Stomach Settle Drops (fast-acting, all-natural)
    -Rubbing alcohol packets (a nurse told us to keep them on hand to tear open and sniff when waves of nausea hit)
    -Hydrating well
    -Chiropractic adjustments help my husband, because there is a lot of neck strain for those who are on their computers or phones for several hours per day (he’s in tech support)

  33. My advise is to always sit in the front seat. It helps immensely, as the motion is generally better than the back.

  34. Another thing to try is Ginger Gravol (in Canada; not sure if it’s in the states)

  35. Oh Sarah, I’m sorry! I also get motion sickness in the car. It is frustrating because I used to be able to read, crochet, etc. I find driving is the best and if I can’t drive, I sit in the front passenger seat. Cool air is good for me, too. I’ve tried Emetrol, which helps, but I don’t want to take it all the time, so I only use that occasionally. Thanks for asking this question, because all of the comments are giving me good ideas! I hope you find something that works well for you!

  36. Be prepared for nothing to work. Seriously. I’ve tried most of them. You may simply need to be prepared to NOT work on your laptop or read while moving.

      1. I’d recommend a visit to your ENT. Vertigo induced by travel is typically treated with the standards you’ve seen here. A physician might have suggestions not OTC.

  37. Ginger. Either in a dried/candied form or essential oil that you could simply use on a cotton ball and inhale as needed. There are also car diffusers for essential oils.
    It is the only thing that has worked consistently for me and any of my motion-sick children. Ginger is such a gift from the Lord, and no side effects!

  38. This may be both a confirmation and a combination of the above advice.
    I sit in the front seat and keep my materials at a dashboard level that permits a forward and peripheral sighting of the road. A light stream of fresh air (tiny vent mount fan — out of respect of other passengers) and mint-y tea or gum also keep my stomache at bay. I will work/read in 15 m on and 15 m off as I adjust. As you age, your middle ear is not as pliable and flexible so this sensitivity is common. God bless you!

  39. Scopalomine patches. They are especially good for long road (and boat!) trips because you put one behind your ear an hour or so before traveling and it’s good for a couple of days. No real side-effects. You do need a prescription for them.
    But one other thing–have you had your blood calcium levels checked? Because motion sickness is one early symptom of vertigo, which is often caused by a malfunctioning parathyroid gland (nothing to do with the thyroid; the parathyroids are just located next to the thyroid). Left ignored, parathyroid can be devastating to your health, so it’s good to have this ruled out ASAP.

  40. I know exactly where you are coming from on this one. I have suffered from motion sickness since I was young. I have to ride in the front seat and look straight ahead. I also crack the window a little when if I do start getting queasy. I think the sound of the air tells my ears and brain that I’m moving and the air blowing in my face tells my eyes that I’m moving so there’s no confusion. Or at least that’s my theory. My 3 year old also suffers greatly but he can’t be in the front seat or be put in a spot where he can see out (packed out 12 passenger van with only a few spots that car seats will fit). So, we aren’t able to go anywhere with him right now unless someone is beside him holding the trash can. There are also some essential oils that are supposed to help but we haven’t tried them yet. Blessings and hope you find something that works for you.

  41. My husband takes Dramamine every time we travel (flights) and it works for him! I started getting bouts of motion sickness/nausea/vomiting/nystagmus, too. I went to get my ears checked out and the doctor said the vertigo was benign. However, she still prescribed Zofran for me. I take it as soon as I get motion sickness and it seriously stops it (and further symptoms) from happening. It’s been a lifesaver. Maybe get your ears checked out with a doctor. A Chiropractor should help, too (that’s on my list of to do’s)!

  42. This cured my motion sickness after 2-3 times I took it:
    “Hyland’s Motion Sickness”
    It sounds like my case was similar to yours. I got it even during very short trips to a grocery store when I wasn’t the driver. Right now it doesn’t bother me at all as long as I don’t look at my phone during the ride.

  43. I agree with the things you already do. Being well rested helps, as do yellow-tinted sunglasses. My favorite solution is Diet Coke with cherry flavoring. (The caffeine helps.) I used to work on a cruise ship on Lake Tahoe, and we served this drink to sick passengers.

  44. I’ve found taking off my shoes and just keeping socks on helpful. It gives your feet the chance to feel the movement of the vehicle and minimizes the distortion between the car’s movement and your own stationary position.

  45. My brother in law, a doctor, gave me a patch. My husband and I were flying to Hawaii. I normally got very I’ll on flights. Almost didn’t go due to this problem. The patch behind my ear worked!! A day later I even went out on a rocking boat and on a submarine for ocean viewing. I never gotsick or nauseous!

  46. From a fellow motion-sickness sufferer, I empathize with you. Growing up, I routinely got carsick on family vacations. My parents eventually started giving me Dramamine before each trip, but then I’d sleep the whole way. As an adult, I no longer use medication, but I do have to look straight ahead and cannot read even a little bit. Mountain roads still do me in, but the Seaband wrist bands help. Ginger-ale (only the kind with read ginger) also helps. Since I can’t look at print in the car, I often listen to audiobooks or podcasts on my MP3, whenever I’m on a long trip.

  47. I’ve found that holding an ice cold water bottle against my lips or under my chin helps my motion sickness.

Comments are closed.