Vi­ta­min Sea

Physi­cian tips for pre­vent­ing and treat­ing sea­sick­ness.

Porthole Cruise Magazine - - What’s Inside - BY DR. GISELA SCHLOSSER

A physi­cian’s tips for pre­vent­ing and treat­ing sea­sick­ness

SIT­TING ON AN OPEN DECK AND LOOK­ING AT A FAR HORI­ZON WILL DE­CREASE THE SEN­SORY CLASH AND RE­LIEVE THE SYMP­TOMS OF SEA­SICK­NESS.

YOUR CRUISE HAS BEEN BOOKED FOR months and the date of de­par­ture is now ap­proach­ing. Whether you’re new to cruise travel or a veteran, many pas­sen­gers pur­chase sea­sick­ness med­i­ca­tions and aids prior to board­ing. Luck­ily, there is an ar­ray of prod­ucts avail­able to com­bat nau­sea, but un­der­stand­ing the mech­a­nism of sea­sick­ness and its risk fac­tors, as well as sim­ple pre­ven­tive mea­sures, may make all the dif­fer­ence in the en­joy­ment of your cruise.

COM­MON FAC­TORS

What are the chances of de­vel­op­ing sea­sick­ness? About 30 per­cent of cruise ship pas­sen­gers will ex­pe­ri­ence some symp­toms; only 5 to 8 per­cent ex­pe­ri­ence the more in­ca­pac­i­tat­ing form. De­pend­ing on your per­sonal sus­cep­ti­bil­ity to sea­sick­ness, your ther­a­peu­tic ap­proach may vary from sim­ple mea­sures to med­i­ca­tions.

Since an­cient Greece, Hip­pocrates de­ter­mined “sail­ing on the sea proves that mo­tion dis­or­ders the body.” The word “nau­sea,” or that hor­ri­ble feel­ing of im­pend­ing vom­it­ing, is de­rived from the Greek word “naus,” which trans­lated means “ship.” Lit­er­ally nau­sea be­came known as ship-sick­ness.

Many sci­en­tific the­o­ries abound re­gard­ing sea­sick­ness. Sci­en­tif­i­cally, our brain pro­cesses sig­nals from var­i­ous parts of the body, par­tic­u­larly the eyes and in­ner ear. Sea­sick­ness oc­curs when the sig­nals don’t “com­pute.” Still, I can’t ig­nore my gut feel­ing (ex­cuse the pun) that psy­cho­log­i­cal fac­tors also play a role.

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