FFE Magazine

How to be the master of car Sickness

How to be the master of car Sickness

Why do we feel queasy in very long drives?


Are you one of those who need to take sleeping pills or keep a plastic bag next to you during long trips on the road? If you are, then you’re one of many who suffer from car sickness, a type of motion sickness that also happens to passengers of aircrafts and sea vessels.


But why do we feel this way? And why do we feel like vomiting when car sick?


Eyes and ears

The idea behind motion sickness is that the brain gets mixed signals from two parts of the body that process movement: the eyes and the ears.


Inside the ears is what is called the vestibular system that is responsible for our sense of balance and movement. When we are inside a car, the vestibular system can sense that we are moving. However, the eyes can see that our bodies and the inside of the car are still.


The mixed signals from the ear and eyes lead to confusion in the brain, resulting in nausea, dizziness and a sense of exhaustion. These are the symptoms of motion sickness.



Expelling our breakfast, lunch or supper is the natural way our brain ‘cures’ motion sickness. The brain believes that the mixed signals are the result of toxins in the stomach. By vomiting, the brain believes that it expels this toxin and treats motion sickness.


However, since the cause is not a toxin, the person can still feel car sick after vomiting.


Mastering motion sickness

One technique to master motion sickness is by looking out the window. By letting the eyes see that the car is moving, it will send the same signal as the ears and lessen the brain’s confusion. Here are some other techniques:


  • Shutting the eyes
  • Getting some fresh air that removes the sense of nausea
  • Stop reading books or viewing gadgets
  • Driving


Incidentally, few drivers experience car sickness. This is because their eyes are always trained on the road.



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