The National Parenting Center

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Motion Sickness

Motion sickness – a common, lifelong problem starting at childhood. If your child gets dizzy and nauseated in the car, he is also likely to become sea sick, train sick, air sick, and have a miserable time at the amusement park. This problem is due to an inherited sensitivity of the equilibrium center. Keep in mind the following points:

• First, never blame your child for the nausea and vomiting. It’s not something he can control.

• Second, the only way to treat the nausea is the passage of time. Your child will usually feel better in about four hours.

• Third, future motion sickness can be prevented or reduced by taking an anti-motion sickness pill, such as Dramamine, about an hour before traveling. These tablets give six hours of protection.

• Fourth, during car trips, have your child sit in the front seat and look out the front window. Be sure your child does not look at books or play games during car travel. Entertain him instead with audio tapes of stories you’ve recorded.

• Finally, sea travel is simply the nemesis of people with motion sickness. Any degree of choppy water will cause your child to become sicker than a dog.

During Dr. Schmitt’s 20 years as a medical practitioner and researcher, he has published over 100 articles or chapters on pediatric health care, and has been awarded the distinguished C. Anderson Aldrich Award by the American Academy of Pediatrics for outstanding contributions to the field of child development. Schmitt has also authored five books including Your Child’s Health, which won Child Magazine’s first Hall of Fame Award in 1991. Schmitt is also a professor of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and on staff at The Children’s Hospital in Denver, Colorado.


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