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Preventing Motion Sickness on a Bus: Top Tips

January 27, 2022
By
Liz Arnold

Motion sickness is an incredibly common condition. Many people experience it not only on boats or ships, but also on cars, airplanes, and buses. And no matter how beautiful your views are or how pleasant your company is - motion sickness can definitely ruin the whole trip experience.

In this article, we’ve prepared some useful tips for you on how to prevent motion sickness during the bus trip. Most of these are pretty universal and can be applied to almost any other means of transportation.

What Is Motion Sickness?

Speaking in simple terms, motion sickness (also known as seasickness) is usually recognized by nausea, vertigo, stomach pains, and vomiting at its worst. Whenever we say that someone is carsick, airsick, or seasick, we mean motion sickness. Though everyone can get it, some statistics are indicating that some people are much more vulnerable to bus sickness.

On average, every third person is affected by motion sickness at some point. The most vulnerable to this condition are children in the age range of 2-12 years, and women. Family history of motion sickness, pregnancy, hormonal medications, migraines, and inner ear disorders drastically increase the risk of experiencing carsickness.

What Causes Motion Sickness?

We use our senses to understand our surroundings. And when these senses send contradictory information to the brain, it can't quite figure it out and this is what makes us sick. For example, your eyes and inner ear sense movement, while the rest of the body is resting on a comfortable bus seat.

There are plenty of things that can trigger motion sickness, apart from transportation. Video games on a widescreen, virtual reality headsets, amusement park rides, and even reading during transportation can cause motion sickness.

Tips to Prevent or Ease the Motion Sickness

And now that we’ve defined bus sickness, the question is how do we avoid it? Below are our top tips on how to prevent motion sickness during solitary or group bus travel.

Travel at Night, If Possible

Best place to sit on a bus to avoid motion sickness

Since motion sickness is caused by the conflict of our senses, the best prevention for seasickness is to temporarily remove one of the contradicting senses. Traveling at night will reduce the amount of incoming visual information, and it's much easier to fall asleep at night than during the daytime.

Getting some sleep is the ultimate solution for bus motion sickness. This way, your brain will not get any contradicting information from your senses whatsoever, and in addition, you will feel well-rested the next day.

Sit Closer to the Front of the Bus

While choosing a bus for travel is incredibly important for the overall quality of experience, some seats on a bus are much better for people that suffer from bus sickness. The best place to sit on a bus to avoid motion sickness is the front of the bus, directly behind the driver.

The front area of the bus is much more stable, meaning there will be less motion information coming to your brain. And even if you start feeling sick, there's much more fresh air at the front of the bus, meaning that this is the best seat for you.

Try to Avoid Reading on the Move

Motion sickness can get much worse if you focus your attention on the things inside the bus. Your peripheral vision will register the movement, create a contradiction in the brain, and that’s where the bus sickness begins. There are cases when people experience the dreadful symptoms of motion sickness only while reading while in a moving vehicle.

If you know you're prone to getting carsick, the easiest step you can take for motion sickness prevention is restraining yourself from reading or using your electronic devices too much.

Find Yourself a Distraction

Don't give in to the frustration of feeling sick! Instead of focusing on your discomfort and ultimately making things even worse, try to find a distraction that will work well for you. Listen to music, have a chat, or even count sheep in your mind - whatever you fancy.

Another great way of bus motion sickness prevention is to focus on something outside of the bus. And while everything around the bus is moving, the horizon is pretty much always in one place. Concentrating your sight on it is known to be a great way to deal with motion sickness.

Be Careful with What You Eat and Drink

How to avoid motion sickness

While it is incredibly important to stay hydrated and don't get hungry, a poor choice of food and beverages can contribute to your bus motion sickness. Try to drink water, juices with low sugar, or small doses of coffee. As for the food, light snacks are the best option.

Try to stay away from heavy, spicy, and fatty food: it's hard to digest just by itself and may cause a severe case of nausea. Don't drink alcohol and keep caffeine levels low, as they raise overall anxiety and can provoke motion sickness.

Have Medication Handy

If you know that any of the previous steps will not prevent motion sickness on a bus, or just want to be prepared for the worst, have a set of medications handy. While the effects of medications are different for everyone, overall, you can use these for quick relief:

  • Scopolamine. This medication comes as pills (make sure to determine a correct dosage for you with your doctor) or as skin patches, which should be applied behind your ears. This is a great and long-lasting solution, especially if you have many trips planned in a course of a few days.
  • Promethazine. Taking this medication helps avoid vomiting during bus travel, as it reduces the vomiting signals. However, this remedy should be carefully dosed, so make sure to consult your doctor before taking it.
  • Over-the-counter antihistamines. Some commonly known medications, such as Benadryl or Antivert, are known to be effective against motion sickness symptoms. Some of them are even safe for the kids.

Even if these medications work well for you, you should always consider consulting with your physician; a doctor can find an even better and more affordable solution for you.

Conclusion

We hope that these tips will make your next bus trip a much more pleasant experience. And even though you can't always control everything, you can make sure to choose a professional transportation company for your future charter bus trip to make it better.

A modern bus with amenities and a professional driver will ensure the smoothness of your trip. And comfortable seats on our buses will help you fall asleep and save that precious energy for your trip. Don't be shy to contact Infinity Transportation and get a quote for your charter bus rental needs!

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