Motion Sickness

Motion Sickness is a topic covered in the CDC Yellow Book.

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Risk for Travelers

Motion sickness is the term attributed to physiologic responses to travel by sea, car, train, air, and virtual reality immersion. Given sufficient stimulus, all people with functional vestibular systems can develop motion sickness. However, people vary in their susceptibility. Risk factors include the following:

  • Age—children aged 2–12 years are especially susceptible, but infants and toddlers are generally immune. Adults >50 years are less susceptible to motion sickness.
  • Sex—women are more likely to have motion sickness, especially when pregnant, menstruating, or on hormones.
  • Migraines—people who get migraine headaches are more prone to motion sickness, especially during a migraine.
  • Medication—some prescriptions can worsen the nausea of motion sickness.

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Risk for Travelers

Motion sickness is the term attributed to physiologic responses to travel by sea, car, train, air, and virtual reality immersion. Given sufficient stimulus, all people with functional vestibular systems can develop motion sickness. However, people vary in their susceptibility. Risk factors include the following:

  • Age—children aged 2–12 years are especially susceptible, but infants and toddlers are generally immune. Adults >50 years are less susceptible to motion sickness.
  • Sex—women are more likely to have motion sickness, especially when pregnant, menstruating, or on hormones.
  • Migraines—people who get migraine headaches are more prone to motion sickness, especially during a migraine.
  • Medication—some prescriptions can worsen the nausea of motion sickness.

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