Seasickness: at first you are so sick you are afraid you will die, and then you are so sick you are afraid you won't die.
- Mark Twain
Barf, blow chunks, chunder, chuck, ralph, heave, puke, spew, upchuck, and yack are just a few colorful words that many use when they are talking about someone vomiting.
Being sea sick can be a miserable, annoying and just down right uncomfortable condition to experience...
So what can you do about it?
What is sea sickness?
Essentially sea sickness is a form of motion sickness. There is no difference between being air sick, car sick and sea sick, it is all technically motion sickness.
Many different forms of transport can cause motion discomfort, with symptoms ranging from dizziness, fatigue and nausea to vomiting. These symptoms are collectively known as motion sickness. Each one of them can have a dispiriting effect on professional sea personal, especially when they have guests on board or they have a long journey ahead.
For most people sea sickness is just a matter of putting up with a little discomfort and can be quite annoying, yet for others it can have crippling effects.
What Causes Sea Sickness?
Irwin (1881) recorded the term “motion sickness” as follows:
"Seasickness, or motion sickness as it might be more correctly named – for not only does it occur on lakes and even on rivers, but, as is well known, a sickness identical in kind may be induced by various other motions than that of turbulent water – is essentially a disturbance of the “organs of equilibration”
The actual cause of seasickness is quite complex, and as I am not a medical expert, I will give you the short reason; Seasickness is caused by repetitive motion that disturbs the inner ear and is related to the sense of balance.
Signs and Symptoms of Sea sickness
The tell-tale signs of motion sickness are paleness and /or flushing of the face, cold sweating, vomiting or dry retching.
These effects commonly occur in the following order:
- Stomach awareness
- Cold sweating
- Feeling of bodily warmth
- Increased salivation
"Yachtie"remedies for sea sickness
We all know how colourful the “yachtie” character can be. Here are a few remedies that I heard over the years on how to cure sea sickness:
- Don’t get on a boat
- Sit under a tree
- Look at the dolphins
- Lie down
- Have a bacon sandwich
- Eat a lot
- Don’t eat at all, then you won’t have anything to throw up
- Sit outside in the fresh air
The best place to be on a yacht is to sit on the aft deck in the fresh air according to an Amels project manager (and ex super yacht engineer).
How to ease the effects of motion sickness
Sea sickness is normally not a big deal; however prolonged lapses of vomiting, retching and dizziness can lead to dehydration and exhaustion which can result in a dangerous drop in blood pressure. So it is very important to take quick and effective measure against this.
There are three types of remedies, this are over the counter medication, natural remedies, and behavioural measures that can be taken to help ease this discomfort of sea sickness.
As seasickness is actually not an illness these remedies are more for preventative measures rather than curative. Most popular brands are:
Over the counter medications:
- Nei Kuan
- Sea Sickness Relief band
- Reduce anxiety
- Take preventive measures
I was lucky in the sense that I didn't get really sick; instead I had to put up with a terrible headache and found the simplest tasks took all my efforts resulting in me feeling sluggish.
On the occasions when I did succumb to the rolling and pounding of the ocean I found sitting out in the fresh air help a lot. Also, I found sucking on hard candy really helped.
We all know how uncomfortable it is, the worst thing that you can do is moan about it, as this the quickest way to “P….. Off” your fellow crew.
Just keep busy or if you are unfit to work, then try the above remedies to make yourself feel better.
Thank you for reading my article on sea sickness.
I hope it can offer some relief when mother nature kicks off and the seas start to give you a glimpse of what they really can do.