Motion sickness occurs when a disagreement exists between your visually perceived movement and your vestibular system’s (inner ears) sense of movement. For example, when you are travelling in a moving vehicle and at the same time concentrating on a still object such as a book, your brain will be confused by the messages of movement coming from your inner ear and the conflicting messages of being still coming from the optic nerves. Anxiety from previous attacks, a full stomach and a stuffy atmosphere can make matters worse.


Nausea, vomiting and dizziness are the common symptoms of travel sickness. In some case, sweating and general feeling of discomfort may be experienced.


Look out of the window of the moving vehicle and concentrate on something on the horizon in the direction of travel. Sit in the front seat when travelling by car and look at the distant scenery. On a boat, go up on the deck and watch the motion of the horizon. In an airplane, sit by the window and look outside. Sitting over the wings in a plane is beneficial since the motion is minimized.

Fresh, Cool air can relieve motion sickness. Foul odors can worsen nausea.

Avoid reading or studying close objects. When travelling by car or train or coach and make regular stops if possible. Do not sit in a seat facing backward.

Avoid excessive alcoholic drinks.

Avoid eating or drinking too much before travelling.

Acupuncture bands for the wrist might be helpful. alternatively, applying pressure for about 5 minutes on a certain acupressure point on either wrist can relieve nausea.

Herbal preparations containing ginger have also been shown to reduce sickness.

Medicines for prevention and treatment are most effective when administered well before the motion activity takes place.


Antihistamines (promethazine, cinnarizine)

  • May cause drowsiness, not suitable for drivers.
  • Good for journeys that last 4-12 hours, to be taken 2 hours before travelling, some preparations can be taken the night before or at the start of the journey.


  • May cause drowsiness, not suitable for drivers.
  • More suitable for shorter journeys.
  • Best taken 20 minutes before travelling.


It is important for people with asthma who go on holiday travel or working trip to plan for their medication, equipments, travel insurance and consult their doctor to make sure their asthma is controlled.

  • Bring along sufficient medicines for the trip. It is a better idea if you always spare extra medicine in other baggage just in case you lost 1 set in the journey. Do not forget to take copy of your prescriptions to prove that it is for your own use.
  • Carry your inhalers with you all the time and keep a spare one in your hotel room.
  • Know your destination, especially on weather, temperature and pollution in that area and make sure your living environment is clean.
  • Asthmatics should not dive within 48 hours of a wheezing attack, even if it is a mild one. Be careful when you go scuba-diving.
  • Asthma may be exacerbated in cold, dry air. Beware when travelling to high attitude.
  • Exposure to certain allergens, such as those from hotel pillows or blankets is common when you travel. Beware of such problems and avoid any such exposure by bringing your own personal items or inform the hotel ahead of time.
  • Take insect repellent with you if you are known to develop serious reactions to insect bites, stings or nuts.
  • Make sure your travel insurance cover your healthcare expenses related to pre-existing asthma.

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