Summer break means summer road trips, but unfortunately, for many that also means motion sickness.
According to Best Health magazine, 90 per cent of adults are affected by motion sickness and children between the ages of 2 and 12 are most likely to feel ill during travel.
Fortunately, the condition is preventable. Below, we look at ways to prevent motion sickness before it sets in.
Pick the right spot
Researchers at the University of Maryland recommend sitting in the front seat of a car to reduce nausea. While on a plane, the middle section is better for those with motion sickness as it is the least affected by turbulence.
In all instances, sitting facing forward and focusing is vital. "Motion sickness occurs when the ways your brain and your inner ear perceive movement don't match up," Michael Zimring, M.D., the director of travel medicine at Mercy Medical Center tells Real Simple.
"Your inner ear can sense that you're moving, but if your eyes are focused inside the vehicle (on the dashboard, for example), they will send a signal to your brain that you aren't moving."
According to neuroscientist Dean Burnett, reading while in a moving vehicle is a major no-no for people with motion sickness. "When you're reading a book, you are staring at something right in front of you, so you're shutting out a lot of external visual information," he says.
Unfortunately, the fluid in your ears is still in motion even though your eyes are fixed on your book. This can trick your brain into thinking you're being poisoned, making you want to expel toxins by vomiting.
Yes, those bracelets with the magnets in them really can help reduce motion sickness. In keeping with Chinese medicine, the bands balance energy in the body, reducing anxiety that can cause motion sickness to worsen.
And you don't even have to buy the bands. Using your thumb, press down on your inner arm, about three fingers distance from the wrist. This should provide temporary relief.
If you didn't follow the first two tricks, you might get that queasy feeling mid-ride. If so, don't fret. You can start to turn it around by focusing the air vents on your face. Be sure to avoid strongly scented air fresheners (and make sure no one is smoking) to reduce the urge to vomit and push out bad smells that may worsen nausea.
Ginger is traditionally used to soothe upset stomachs and nausea, but it isn't the only herb you should use. Peppermint and Black horehound are also soothing and can strengthen and tone the body's systems.