Schooner Festival is Here! This brings an opportunity to sail on one of the beautiful schooners in town. Or, come aboard Gloucester’s resident touring schooners the Thomas E. Lannon and the Ardelle any time to enjoy beautiful views of Gloucester from the Sea. Not to mention the many whale watching, deep-sea fishing, and cruise boats available to locals and visitors to Cape Ann.
But if you are prone to sea sickness like I am, the thought of getting onboard a boat may be the furthest thing from your mind. I can totally relate! My husband loved scuba diving with me. Many vacations were spent traveling from one dive site to another. The small jumper plans we had to take didn’t help my issues with motion sickness. I would often end up ‘feeding the fish.’ While bobbing on the surface or leaning over the rails I felt helplessly overtaken by sea sickness. On more than one occasions I heard my husband exclaim – “Wow. Look at all the fish!” Luckily, this only happened some of the time. Through the years I logged over 100 dives and felt fine more than 50% of the time. For me, seeing the beautiful marine life was worth the chance of getting sea-sick. Of note – I recommend avoiding ‘rice and beans’ for your pre-dive breakfast!
I tried all kinds of remedies and medications to try to prevent and/or treat motion sickness. Some were over-the-counter (OTC) such as Bonine and Dramamine. Or prescription Scopolamine, in a pill or patch. I only tried Scopolamine once as its side effect was a severe dry mouth. That and the potential side effect of confusion did not seem a good combination for scuba diving.
I once took Dramamine for a rough ferry-boat crossing between Ireland and England and found myself waking up on a table in the cafeteria, with no memory of how I got there!! Enough side effects to scare me away from medications.
My best success combatting motion sickness has been from OTC motion sickness medications from Canada (Gravol) and Europe (Travol.) I was on a dive vacation in Curacao when first introduced to these meds and experienced my first ‘puke-free, problem-free’ diving ever. 🙂
For more on medications for motion sickness and list of side effects go to – http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/scopolamine-transdermal-route/side-effects/drg-20072848.
TIPS for Preventing and Treating Motion Sickness from the Center for Disease Control – http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/the-pre-travel-consultation/motion-sickness
Note – ** Discuss with your physician before using OTC medications which might have dangerous side effects and/or interact with other medications you are taking. **
Natural Tips – Sea-bands are based on the acupuncture/acupressure anti-nausea points. I generally prefer more natural remedies and have found Sea-bands to be helpful. Fishing for blue fish on Cape Cod, the boat captain fashioned sea-bands out of twine, with a knot to press on at the P6/ Nei-Kuan pressure point. It worked for me that day. If you don’t have the band or rope, you can try pressing the point with your fingers. http://www.motion-sickness-guru.com/acupressure-wrist-bands-and-bracelets.html Sea-bands have been found to be effective enough that they are sometimes recommended for cancer patients and pregnant women to help prevent/treat nausea and vomiting. http://www.cancercenter.com/community/managing-side-effects/nausea-vomiting/ I once saw an anesthesiologist use these points to treat post-operative nausea with good effect.
Acupressure point to combat nausea:
New on the Horizon – Check out this shocking new treatment for motion sickness –
- Qadeer Arshad, Niccolo Cerchiai, Usman Goga, Yuliya Nigmatullina, R. Ed Roberts, Augusto P. Casani, John F. Golding, Michael A. Gresty, Adolfo M. Bronstein. Electro-cortical Therapy for Motion Sickness. Neurology, September 2015
Hmmm. Personally, I will stick with the Sea-bands.
(Photo of Schooner Adventure by graphic designer Cheryl Briscoe (photography) firstname.lastname@example.org.)
For those that get green-around-the-gills at even the thought of being on a boat, I hope you find YOUR perfect remedy for sea sickness so that where ever you travel and whatever vessel you choose to sail on you enjoy the experience. A peaceful day on the water with the wind in the sails is well worth it.
Happy Schooner Festival! May you enjoy calm seas and smooth sailing with the wind at your back and the sun shining on your face. ~ Karen
Karen Pischke B.S.N., R.N. Owner/Founder of Dreamtime Wellness™ Promoting Optimal Wellness for Body, Mind & Spirit www.DreamtimeWellness.com. Find us on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Dreamtime-Wellness-/348619611849199
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