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Clinical Reference Systems: Pediatric Advisor 10.0
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Motion Sickness


Motion sickness is common, especially in young children. Children who get dizzy and nauseated in the car are also prone to becoming seasick, trainsick, airsick, and sick on amusement park rides. The problem is due to an inherited sensitivity of the equilibrium center located in the semicircular canals (inner ear). It is not related to emotional problems.


  1. Treatment for the nausea

    Have your child lie down and keep a vomiting pan handy. Give him only sips of clear fluids until his stomach settles down. If your child goes to sleep, let him sleep. Usually, children don't vomit more than once, and all symptoms disappear in about 4 hours.

  2. Prevention of motion sickness with antinausea medicine

    The best treatment for motion sickness is prevention. Buy some nonprescription Dramamine at your drugstore. Dramamine comes in 50-mg tablets and a 15-mg/teaspoon liquid. The dosage is 1 teaspoon of liquid Dramamine for children 2 to 6 years old, 1 tablet for children 6 to 12 years old, and 2 tablets for children over 12 years. Give the Dramamine 1 hour before traveling or going to an amusement park. The tablets give 6 hours of protection and are very helpful.

  3. Prevention and types of travel
    • Car trips: It will help if your child sits in the front seat and at window level. Do not look at books or play games during car travel.
    • Sea travel: Avoid it.
    • Air travel: Select a seat near the wings.
    • Amusement parks: Avoid rides that spin.
    • Meals: Eat light meals before or during trips.

Written by B.D. Schmitt, M.D., author of "Your Child's Health," Bantam Books.
Copyright 1999 Clinical Reference Systems