Pass the bag – 1 in 5 motorists suffer car sickness.
Here’s a happy thought for you as you hire a car for the half term. If you have children and one or more of them suffers from car sickness, there’s a good chance they’ll still have it long after they get behind the wheel of a car.
And just to balance things out (and give our car valeting teams food for thought) that means one in five of the people hiring our cars and vans get motion sickness too.
That’s just one of the findings of a new survey by the RAC, which looked not only at numbers, but the profile of the people most likely to get car sick, and the activities most likely to trigger sickness.
Roughly one third of children get car sick (a stat which suddenly has us realising why just so many families hire our cars for their family holidays). Yet 1 in 5 adults suffer from the condition too. 75% of sufferers say sitting in the back seat is most likely to trigger an attack. More than a third of drivers say they’ve had to stop a vehicle as a result of someone feeling unwell (from a quick straw poll, that seems a very low figure). And by far the most common triggers for car sickness are reading or using a tablet or smartphone (with a lack of fresh air and winding country lanes also common causes).
So what can you do if you or one of your passengers feels in danger of recoating the upholstery of your rental car? The NHS provides the following tips:
- Minimise motion. Sitting in the front of the car, or at the very least in the middle of the rear passenger seat, may help.
- Look out of the window and focus on a fixed point on the horizon.
- Open a window and breathe fresh air.
- Close your eyes, breathe slowly and focus on your breathing.
- Take a break. Get out of the car, stretch your legs, take in some fresh air and drink water.
- Try ginger – in tea or in a biscuit. Studies vary, but it may be that ginger can help alleviate vomiting, if not nausea.
- If children are feeling ill, try distraction techniques, by playing a game (not video games) lis-tening to music or singing songs.
Planning your next (hopefully sickness-free) break? Hire family cars from TJS and cut the wear and tear – and cleaning.