My child vomited in the car. What to do? What chair should I take? Rear-Facing, Forward Facing? Is the car seat the cause?
There are dozens of parents who have been asking us this question in recent months and who want to know what they can do to prevent this situation, that is, turning a car trip into an unpleasant experience for the whole family.
Car sickness is part of the category of ailments classified as “motion sickness” or “motion sickness” in English.
The plane river or the sea river also belong to this category of movement river.
It is not known exactly why certain children or adults are more likely to develop such symptoms, none of the studies conducted so far do not provide conclusive information in this regard.
What actually happens: The symptoms of car sickness are triggered when the brain receives conflicting information from the inner ear. eyes, proprioceptive receptors in the articular and muscular system (proprioceptive system)
When a small child travels by car, sitting in the back seat, unable to see through the window, or when an older child reads a book, or keeps an eye on the tablet or phone, although the inner ear perceives the movement of the car and transmits it information, the brain, the eyes and the rest of the body do not transmit the same data. Basically, although the inner ear says, “We’re moving,” the eyes and proprioceptive receptors in the joints and muscles say, “It’s not true, we’re actually standing still.” >.
What are the symptoms of this car sickness in the order in which they occur:
- Cold sweats
- Unjustified fatigue
- Loss of appetite
Although the problem does not appear to affect most infants and toddlers, children between the ages of 2 and 12 are particularly affected by this type of motion sickness.
An extensive study conducted in 2019 showed that motion sickness is rare in children under 1 year, most commonly among children between 4 and 13 years, the most severe symptoms being children between 6 and 9 years. After puberty, the incidence of this condition decreases significantly.
To start on a less dramatic note, you should know that motion sickness was first described in 300 AD, in ancient China, being in that case “cart evil”.
If we have found that our children are affected by car sickness, here are the methods of prevention and treatment we have available.
- Reduce sensory overload by encouraging your child to look out the window and not focus so much on books or the tablet or phone era.
- Try to drive near the child’s sleep time because sleep seems to alleviate the effects of car sickness.
- Make sure that the car seat offers a position high enough for the little one so that he can look out the window properly – that is, on (the rear window of the car in the case of small children traveling Rear-Facing). In other words, both a Forward-Facing and a Rear-Facing seat must provide good visibility for the little passenger so that the car seat does not install.
- Carefully plan your meals before your trip. Do not give your child a substantial meal immediately before or during the car trip. If it is a longer trip or your child needs to eat, offer a light snack (plain biscuits, water) before leaving.
- Good ventilation of the car, especially in summer, prevents motion sickness. Avoid smoking in the car.
- Distracting the little one while traveling is another great way to prevent car sickness. Listening to appropriate songs or singing children’s songs with the little one have been shown to have miraculous effects in fighting car sickness.
- Very important: do not panic and do not transmit negative fears or anticipatory feelings to the little one if he suffers from motion sickness. Treat things calmly, as something insignificant and somehow normal, thus inducing a feeling of well-being for the little one.
We recommend that you opt for such treatment methods only if the methods outlined above do not work for your child and only on the recommendation of a pediatrician.
Antihistamines are usually used, which are given one hour before driving and then every 6 hours .
You must follow the dose prescribed by your pediatrician and keep in mind that drowsiness is one of the most common side effects of this medicine.
The recommended antihistamines in this situation are of the type Dramamine (Dimenhydrinate) or Diphenylhydramine (Benadryl) .
- Ginger has a role demonstrated by clinical studies to slow the movements of stomach muscles, thus having a proven effect in combating motion sickness. You can try giving the baby ginger syrup half an hour before the trip starts.
- Lavender oil aromatherapy can also have positive effects in combating motion sickness
- Acupuncture bracelets such as Sea Band are framed as medical devices and act by stimulating areas that control the vomiting reflex, nausea . These bracelets should be positioned on both wrists of the baby’s or baby’s hands, at 3 finger widths from the little one’s finger) to the wrist joint.
If, despite these prevention methods, the child begins to show symptoms of car sickness, we recommend that you stop the car as soon as possible (safely – parking, gas station) and let the little one out and walk. , or lie on your back for a few minutes, eyes closed. If you can, it’s good to put a compress soaked in cold water (scarf) on the little one’s forehead.
Another useful tip would be to avoid long trips by car if the child is being treated with drugs that have known side effects such as nausea, such as antibiotics (azithromycin, metonidazole, erythromycin, biseptol), antiparasitics, analgesics (ibuprofen, codeine), antidepressants (fluoxetine, sertraline)
If these prevention tips do not work for your baby and nausea and vomiting while driving continue to be a problem, we recommend that you consult your pediatrician to see if there is another cause responsible for these symptoms.
For more advice on transporting children by car, please contact the specialists Child Safety Centers < / a> Romania.
We wish you pleasant and safe roads with the little ones!