Aromatherapy for Motion Sickness and Travel Anxiety

Summer is a wonderful time for car trips and boat outings ,but if you or a family member suffers from motion sickness, travel can turn from exciting and fun to uncomfortable and stressful in a hurry!

Motion sickness can result from travelling in cars, boats, trains, planes, amusement park rides, and even playground swings. Travel by car is the most common cause of motion sickness, and can be made worse for sensitive children by general road pollution or leakage of fuel fumes from the vehicle itself.

Motion sickness is caused by the delicate mechanism in the inner ear, and fluids contained in it, becoming out of balance by repeated movement of head and body. Fast-moving conflicting messages being received from the eyes to the brain don’t help.

In some children, the very thought of having to travel makes them tense and anxious and they begin to get symptoms of motion sickness before they’ve even stepped outside the front door!

Signs and Symptoms:

  • vomiting, feeling unwell, feeling faint, dizziness , perspiration
  • drowsiness, yawning, breathing more heavily
  • a cold, clammy feel to the skin, or unusual pallor to skin
  • in some cases earache

If a child vomits make sure to give them plenty of liquids so they don’t get dehydrated.

Aromatherapy can calm the emotional center of the brain and is useful for soothing travel jitters as well as full blown motion sickness. Essential oils can be used in vehicles using a car diffuser like the one shown. Peppermint, spearmint, or ginger essential oil creates an uplifting and refreshing aroma that can curb nausea and also helps drivers stay alert on those long hauls.

Motion Sickness Preventative:
2 drops Peppermint EO
2 drops Ginger EO
5 drops carrier oil like grapeseed or jojoba

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Rub 1-3 drops (kids) or 3-5 drops (adults) of the above blend on chest and stomach one hour before traveling. One to three drops of this mix can also be used 2-3 times hourly massaged behind ears or put one drop on a tissue and tuck it down in the seat behind the child.

Flying Anxiety:

Before traveling add one drop Lavender EO and one drop Geranium EO to a small amount of carrier oil, and put it in the bath. It will float and can be collected in the hands and massaged into the child’s skin, under the water. An older child or adult can massage it in themselves.

During the flight use a prepared mix of 5 drops each of Roman Chamomile EO, Lavender EO, and Geranium EO, diluted in one ounce of carrier oil. Younger children will allow you to massage a little of this into their feet, while for older children, place 2 drops of Lavender EO onto a tissue and place it behind them, on the seat. If the child feels sick, put 2 drops of the Motion Sickness mix on a tissue, for them to sniff. For a very convenient aromatherapy application method on the go, use Young Living’s Tranquil Blend roll on.

Want more information about the amazing healing benefits of therapeutic grade essential oils? Click HERE to subscribe to the Oils For Wellness e-newsletter.

These tips are for educational purposes only and are not intended to diagose or treat any illness. If you are experiencing serious discomfort please consult with your health practitioner.

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  • Life Moto , August 3, 2009

    nice info you have here maybe we will try it sometimes.

  • darlene , August 4, 2009

    It's true. Aromatherapy worked for me. I was so sad because my kids were having fun and they were eating delicious stuff, like Pinwheel Italian Calzones. I have read on Project Weight Loss the recipe – it's great for traveling. Since usually kids don’t like veggies, these calzones are a great way to sneak them into their diet. Another good thing is the calzone snacks come in small sizes, making it easy to pick up and eat them. Pinwheel Italian Calzones tastes like pizza – my kids are crazy for it.

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