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How to prevent seasickness on the Ocean

a blue pool of water

Visiting Hawaii, it is a must to take a boat tour and spend at least one day enjoying the views of Waikiki and other picturesque sights of this blessed land. It is also a unique opportunity to see the wonders of Hawaiian marine life firsthand, get the thrill of a lifetime, and educational experience with your friends and family.

However, Sea Sickness can turn even the most beautiful day and thrill of discoveries into a devastating and miserable experience. While seasickness is pretty normal and does not carry any particular danger to your life, it is still one of the worst nightmares of any tourist who is hoping to get the most out of their vacation.

In this article, we shall explain why seasickness occurs at all, who is more vulnerable to this condition and how to reduce the risk or even prevent it entirely, even if you have already had this unfortunate experience before.

What is seasickness, and why does it happen to me?

To solve any problem, it is essential to understand why does it occur at all.

Seasickness is a part of a whole “family” of conditions called “Motion Sickness.” Those who get sick during a cruise can as well experience similar symptoms in cars, planes, and any other vehicle.

Sickness is your brain’s reaction when it fails to correlate the information it receives from the eyes, ears, and the rest of the body. Despite its incredible complexity, our brain works and reacts according to strictly designed patterns. Most of them come from an unconditional stimulus programmed by Mother Nature itself. Others are the result of previous experience.

In other words, your body knows that when the eyes get dry, you have to blink. And you do it without giving a thought because it is “common sense” for the brain. Just like this, your brain “knows” that when the scenery around you is “moving,” it means that you are either walking or running.

When your body stays still while the eyes tell the brain that you are moving, it may get confused and start sending SOS signals trying to “reboot” the system. Nausea, vomiting, cold sweat, and other notorious symptoms of seasickness are technically the attempts of your brain to check where the shortage that causes the glitch is.

Who is most likely to get seasick?

Technically, anyone can experience seasickness or any other kind of motion sickness, no matter whether it is the first experience on a cruise or in the car or you have already been in a similar situation. Seasickness seems to come from nowhere and may disappear unexplainably as well.

However, statistically, women and children under the age of 12 are most vulnerable to this notorious condition. It is pretty explainable as seasickness has certain “boosters” that make it most probable. And most of them are common exactly for women and young children.

  • Hormonal misbalance, treatment or birth control method;
  • Pregnancy;
  • Menstruation;
  • Changes in weight and health condition;
  • Ear disorders;
  • Migraines.

All those factors significantly increase your risk of getting seasick.

How do I know if I am seasick or have any other condition?

One of the biggest problems with seasickness is that it can often be confused with other conditions with similar symptoms. For example, food poisoning, certain allergic reactions as well as exhaustion, and even cancer and brain tumors have nausea, vomiting, headaches, and cold sweat in their standard list of symptoms.

It can also take you to buy surprise, and therefore you may not even understand that you are seasick. For example, you can already be an hour into your Hawaiian boat tour and then suddenly get dizzy and start vomiting, although you felt perfectly fine until then.

Except for the common physical symptoms, this condition may have a certain psychological effect that may suddenly make you “act weird.” For example, you may become particularly irritable, find it hard to concentrate or even speak, feel symptoms of a panic attack or get paranoid.

However, unlike most of the conditions listed above, seasickness disappears as soon as you stop moving or get off the boat. It is the most important sign that shows that you fell victim to this unpleasant but pretty normal condition.
If the symptoms stop and there are no signs of dehydration that might have been caused by vomiting and sweating, there is no need to address medical help.

However, suppose you continue to feel dizzy or exhausted or experience severe motion sickness in any kind of vehicle or long after you finish the trip. In that case, you should address a doctor a soon as possible to determine the true reason for your condition and possible ways to treat it.

Can you manage or prevent seasickness?

The fact that you may belong to one of the risk groups or have already experienced any kind of motion sickness before does not mean that you have to deprive yourself of a breathtaking boat tour in Waikiki.
Here are several practical tips that will help you prevent seasickness or even manage it once you feel that the first symptoms occur:

  • Take a good nap before the sail – a tired brain is more likely to get confused and glitch causing the symptoms of seasickness;
  • Take a snack – certain tastes can hack your brain and soothe symptoms of seasickness. Pretzels, crackers, or any other salty snack are a perfect way to distract your body. Ginger and peppermint a famous for their soothing effect on the digestive system that helps overcome nausea. Just don`t eat too much before the sail, or the effect may be quite the opposite;
  • Avoid alcohol before and during the sail – despite being a trigger for nausea, alcohol dehydrates your body, which will significantly worsen your condition if seasickness occurs;
  • Put your smartphone or book away during the sail – reading or concentrating on certain visual or text information during movement may cause a condition called “reading hypnoses.” Leading to disorientation and fatigue, this condition contributes greatly to the risk to get seasick;
  • Keep away from direct sunlight – overheating is another scenario that can cause or worsen sea sickness;
  • Look at the horizon – once you start feeling dizzy, try to concentrate on the line of the horizon. It will “anchor” your brain and help it adjust to the controversial feeling;
  • Get outside – once you feel seasick while sitting in the boat cabin, get outside as soon as possible. As soon as you start “seeing” the motion, the message that your brain gets from the body, inner ear, and eyes become less controversial, and the symptoms of seasickness recede.

Are there drugs that can treat or manage seasickness?

Since seasickness is a pretty complicated condition that can be caused by different factors, there is no particular magic pill that will help you avoid seasickness.

However, certain drugs tend to ease the symptoms and help your body overcome the condition. Antihistamines, drugs normally used to treat symptoms of allergies, may appear helpful with seasickness. They can distract your body from faulty signals between different systems and therefore minimize symptoms of motion sickness.

Although antihistamines are usually available over-the-counter, it is essential to consult a doctor before choosing them as your means to prevent seasickness. They may have certain side effects or come into conflict with other meds you may be taking at the moment.

Also, antihistamines are not a “magic pill.” You should not rely on them entirely. It is best to still keep in mind the non-medical ways to avoid the seasickness that we have mentioned above.

Conclusion

Seasickness is an extremely unpleasant condition that can easily ruin your carefully-planned vacation or romantic getaway. Keeping in mind the tips from this article, you minimize the risk of falling victim to this notorious “buzzkill.”

Another way to make sure that seasickness won`t destroy your experience is by choosing a reputable company to organize your sea trip. Well-maintained boats with a qualified and experienced crew on board are your guarantee for a smooth, safe, and exciting cruise.

Contact Hawaii Ocean Charters next time to plan your vacation, and we shall make sure that your cruise will bring you the best memories without any unfortunate side effects.

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