A guest post today for those of you who are considering a family holiday involving boat travel. We’ve been on a few family ferry trips to France in the past, and dealing with sea sickness was definitely my top concern when it came to the kids. Thankfully we emerged relatively unscathed, but I know from my friends’ experiences that this isn’t always the case! This guest post has lots of great tips for helping minimise the effects of sea sickness.
Sea sickness is pretty common, and if you or your children have experienced it once, chances are you’re dreading it happening again. Sea sickness is a type of motion sickness, and the associated nausea, vomiting and dizziness can really spoil what would otherwise be a fun family trip.
So, what can you do to minimise the effects of sea sickness? Here are some steps you can take to make your trip more enjoyable.
Easier said than done, but still worth a try! Being nervous about experiencing sea sickness can make the symptoms worse, so try to stay calm and keep a positive attitude towards your journey. Taking slow, deep breaths is a good place to start.
Check the route before you book
Avoid itineraries where the journey is most likely to get rough. Do a quick search on the route you will be taking: does it tend to involve rough water? Some routes are renowned for choppy conditions and sea sickness, so do your research before you book.
Make sure to use good quality navigational tools for your journey to avoid unnecessary detours that will make the trip longer.
Cruising? Schedule land days
If your experiences with sea sickness in the past are quite severe, you may avoid cruises altogether, but if they’re on the milder side, consider a cruise that includes regular stops on land. This will give you a chance to normalise yourself, and avoid lengthy spells on the water which can aggravate your symptoms. You could also consider a river cruise as opposed to a sea cruise; these tend to be calmer and also incorporate lots of stops for sightseeing.
Get out on deck
Fresh air and the chance to look at the horizon are both great ways to relieve the symptoms of sea sickness. Being up on deck can also help reduce anxiety and provide a welcome distraction.
Choose the right cabin
If your boat trip involves booking a cabin, try to pick one on the lowest level and in the middle of the ship. This location experiences the least movement, so you will feel less disoriented. Avoid cabins right at the front or back of the boat as these experience the most movement.
Be prepared for symptoms
If you think you or the kids might experience sea sickness, it’s well worth being prepared with some medication. Travel sickness tablets are readily available from chemists, and you usually don’t need a prescription. If you’re buying medication for children, make sure you choose a product that’s suitable for their age; a pharmacist will be able to help you with this.
If you prefer to avoid medication, you could try a natural remedy instead. Travel sickness wristbands have a metal disk which pushes on the wrist, providing acupressure. They’re often referred to as sea bands. They’re a great option for children who are worried about sea sickness, but not experiencing any symptoms; you can avoid unnecessary medication whilst providing them with something that reassures them.
The power of ginger
Another natural remedy is ginger; this has been used for centuries to treat sickness, and it can help settle the stomach, control dizziness and reduce nausea. You could try ginger tea, ginger biscuits, or chewable ginger tablets.
An obvious one, but it does help! Try to avoid anything that can suddenly trigger sea sickness; this can be strong smelling foods, alcohol, or simply staring at a book or a screen for a prolonged period of time. Screens and books can be a great distraction on a difficult journey though, so if you don’t want to rule them out, try glancing around regularly to avoid any symptoms.
Consult a healthcare professional
If none of the above remedies works for you, the experts at Click Pharmacy suggest you speak to a healthcare provider about your sea sickness and discuss options for managing it. They may suggest giving you a jab which will help you sleep through the journey; this is obviously a final fall-back option though so it’s worth trying other remedies first!
Do you have any tried and tested tips for dealing with sea sickness?
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