Motion sickness in flight - otherwise known as airsickness - is a real problem for many people. The most common symptoms of this condition are nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and dizziness. This condition is caused by the movements and oscillations of the plane whilst it is in flight. Once the plane has taken off, the human eye notes the apparent lack of movement inside the cabin whilst the ear detects the oscillations of the aircraft. So the brain receives conflicting messages from its sensory apparatus and induces a feeling of loss of balance and general malaise. To help ease this disorder, there are a few methods that you can try out both before and during the flight.
Here are 5 simple things you can do to prevent and combat the symptoms of airsickness:
• Eat a light meal before boarding the plane: flying on an empty stomach, contrary to popular belief, does not help to avoid airsickness - in fact, it exacerbates it. We would therefore recommend having a few light snacks before the flight, such as fruit, vegetables or some crackers. It is a good idea to avoid coffee, alcohol, nicotine and fatty foods that could take a long time to digest, causing nausea.
• Choose the right seat for you: pick a seat close to the window and try to focus on a point on the horizon to give your brain an external reference. If you are travelling after sunset, choose a seat in the middle of the plane where the movements and oscillations of the aircraft are less dramatic. Finally, ensure that you know where the airsickness bags are located, just in case you need them.
• Avoid reading or staring at the screen of an electronic device for a long time: just as with carsickness, concentrating on an object in your hands or inside the cabin contributes to a loss of orientation, causing nausea. Try to look out of the window and only concentrate on details in the cabin for short periods of time.
• Chew some minty chewing gum and focus on your breathing: the action of chewing stimulates digestion and relaxation. Mint flavouring also has a soothing effect on the stomach, alleviating the sensation of nausea and indigestion. In the meantime, try to take slow, deep breaths to ease yourself to sleep.
• Use anti-nausea drugs or natural remedies: there are various commonly-used, over-the-counter drugs for airsickness, including sedative antihistamines, which you should take half an hour before the flight, and the hyoscine patch, which you should place behind your ear. Remember to take note of any possible side effects, including dry mouth and blurred vision. There are also some very effective natural remedies for airsickness, such as ginger, which is widely believed to have an anti-nausea effect, or lemon, whose pungent flavour encourages the brain to pay more attention to the information coming from the body.
We hope that these tips will help you to combat airsickness. We would like to remind you that if you need anything at all, our cabin crew will be more than happy to help. Enjoy your trip with Air Dolomiti!