Motion Sickness: Its Psychological Perspective

Hi folks! Do you feel nauseated, fatigued or pukish while traveling? If yes, then you might be experiencing kinetosis or motion sickness. It is caused when there is a discrepancy or disagreement in our visually perceived movement and our sense of balance or vestibular sense.

Some of the important symptoms of motion sickness are:

Symptoms of Motion Sickness

  • Nausea
  • Restlessness
  • Feelings of worry and tension
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Weakness and head reeling

Motion sickness sometimes gets so disturbing that it makes some to stay indoors and not prefer much traveling. It gets aggravated when one is traveling in hilly areas, during summer times and stomach ailments. Depending on the causal aspect of the motion, Kinetosis is also referred to as car sickness, seasickness, airsickness, or simulation sickness. Now let us see some of the causes of motion sickness:

CAUSES OF MOTION SICKNESS

The causes of motion sickness are classified into three broad categories. They are:

  • Motion sickness that is caused when motion is felt but not seen
  • Motion sickness that is caused when motion is seen but not felt
  • When the motion stimulus is felt both by your vestibular and visual systems, but they do not correspond to each other.

Confused??? Let me explain each one of the causes by giving some examples:

Causes Examples
Motion sickness that is caused when motion is felt but not seen Car sickness, airsickness, etc. We see the interior portions of the cars and airplanes as being static. But, when we see outside the roads, trees and the other shapes seem to be moving. So this causes a discrepancy in what we are watching and feeling, thus motion sickness is caused.
Motion sickness that is caused when motion is seen but not felt Video or simulation sickness. When we play games on the simulators, video games or when you watch videos on larger screens (movie halls), the animation of fast objects, flying objects, larger objects, etc tend to cause motion sickness. Here you are just seeing something and feeling sick.
When the motion stimulus is felt both by your vestibular and visual systems, but they do not correspond to each other. While driving in badly maintained roads. This causes a discrepancy between what we are seeing and feeling. O one hand, we would be seeing the vehicle and outside objects move slowly, but our balance/vestibular sense would be sensing severe jerks and movements that are irregular due to the bad roads.

So, now the question is – Is motion sickness related to our psyche in some form? The answer is “YES”!!! Motion sickness that psychological connection too. An interesting and important part of the brain, the area postrema is responsible for causing vomiting when it detects poison It also resolves the conflicts between vision and balance. When you feel or experience something while in motion, if you cannot see the moving objects but still feel the motion… Then your inner ear/vestibule sense signals the ear that it is sensing motion. But, your eyes on the other hand signal that everything is still (since you cannot see the outside objects moving – in case of a ship with no windows, or in case you are seeing the inside of a car and not out of the window). This results your brain to sense that you are hallucinating and moreover, the hallucination is caused due to poisoning. Therefore, to flush out the toxins of your body, as part of the defense mechanism your brain signals your reflux system to throw up. And this ends up in “motion sickness”.

Hope you got the whole idea now. Motion sickness may seem silly at first, but for some it is really frustrating and disturbing. To know about some useful psychological and alternative techniques to deal with motion sickness, check out my next blog coming up shortly!

2 thoughts on “Motion Sickness: Its Psychological Perspective

  1. Gech

    if u wanna avoid this sickness
    -use earphone and listen to songs you love
    -think about critical things in ur life just to forget that u r travelling.
    -close ur eyes get sleep.
    -smell lemon
    -get mint

    Reply

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