Seasickness Advice

With a little advance preparation everyone can experience a magical day out with the whales.

Seasickness, also known as motion sickness, travel sickness, airsickness or carsickness, may occur in response to certain types of movement such as the rocking of a vessel on the ocean. Seasickness is treatable in the vast majority of individuals.

Medication for seasickness

Medications either calm the nerves of the inner ear or soothe the brain’s vomiting centre. Whale watching is an open ocean activity and if you are susceptible to seasickness, we strongly advise that you take seasickness medication. Sea World Cruises holds a pharmacological license for seasickness tablets and our preferred remedy, Travacalm H.O. is available to purchase onboard our vessels. We recommend that you visit a pharmacist and take the pills 30-minutes prior to your scheduled departure. It is not recommended that children under the age of two years take seasickness medication.

Other treatments for seasickness

Research suggests that ginger can help to ease the symptoms of motion sickness. Ginger is available in raw, crystalised and pill from your pharmacist. 

Risk factors for seasickness

Some factors may make motion sickness more likely to occur, including:

  • Women are generally more susceptible than men.
  • Children are more susceptible than adults (generally between the ages of two and 12 years).
  • Hormonal factors include pregnancy, menstrual cycle factors and oral contraceptives.
  • Other balance disorders may be a factor, particularly vestibular disease and migraine.
  • A person who has experienced motion sickness in the past may have worse symptoms on future trips by expecting to feel sick.

Symptoms of seasickness

Symptoms can range from mild to serious, and can include:

  • dizziness
  • generally feeling unwell and tired
  • excessive production of saliva
  • headache
  • nausea, vomiting
  • burping
  • sweating

Reducing the risk of seasickness

There are different things you can try in order to prevent motion sickness or at least reduce its effects, including:

  • During motion, look at an earth-fixed object. On a boat, try and look at the horizon or land masses from the deck, rather than the inside of the cabin. 
  • Stay on the lower decks where the boat’s centre of gravity is most stable. 
  • Position yourself where you will experience the least motion, in the centre of a ship.
  • The larger the vehicle, the less susceptible it is to motion so, if possible, try to travel on a ship rather than a small boat.
  • Some people find that closing their eyes is the best way to eliminate sensory confusion.
  • Avoid alcohol for 24 hours before travelling and during the trip.
  • Make sure you have plenty of fresh air. Fumes or smoke can exacerbate symptoms.
  • On brief journeys, try not to eat or drink anything.
  • On long journeys, eat and drink sparingly and often.
  • Anxiety worsens symptoms. Use relaxation techniques and mindfulness techniques.

Where to get help

  • Your doctor
  • Pharmacist

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