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Old 23-08-2013, 22:16   #1
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Sea Sickness Thread....Again

I am a 50 ton captain who makes his living on the water and man do I get sea sick. It has actually gotten worse in the last three years. I really want to sail around the world some day, or at least do some major offshore work but I am really spooked by how disabled I get by it.

How is it that the military who has fighter pilots that pull major Gs and navy captains who go through rough weather not come up with a cure to seasickness? This is a major ailment that can make people incapable of completing basic tasks.

I am pretty bummed about this. I definitely once thought I would make a living out of delivering yachts and now after a dozen coastal deliveries doubt my ability to execute my job were the seas to kick up.

Isn't there a cure other than lying under an apple tree? Doesn't it exist?
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Old 23-08-2013, 22:38   #2
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

I get seasick once or twice a year. Usually just suffered through it, but this year stocked the first aide kit with dramamine. Does the trick for me. Lots of other folk remedies out there. I read that the in the olden days they would plug one ear with cotton.
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Old 23-08-2013, 23:00   #3
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

Meclizine works for me. 6 -10hours before then as needed. Seas were down this last delivery but so far so good.
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Old 23-08-2013, 23:41   #4
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

I haven't found a medication yet that doesn't get me so dopey that I would be able to be a captain. Dramamine is a heavy duty drug. Knocks me right out.
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Old 23-08-2013, 23:42   #5
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

I get seasick just reading the 4,593,421,345th one of these questions about...seasickness.
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Old 24-08-2013, 00:56   #6
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

We carried this combination on our boat for fifteen years. It's called "The Navy Cocktail" or sometimes "The Coast Guard Cocktail". It was the only thing that stopped seasickness for someone once they had gotten sick. It worked for every person who took it and no one experienced any significant side effects. Some doctors may not want to prescribe it though. We had one who was also a sailor and became an enthusiastic proponent of the remedy.

  • Phenergan combinations - Doug Cheeseman uses the combination of Dexedrine span (Dextroamphetamine) 15 mg combined with Phenergan (promethazine hydrochloride) 12.5 mg. The Phenergan inhibits motion sickness but causes drowsiness, counteracted by the Dexedrine. Apparently the two together have a synergistic effect. Familiarly known as the "Navy Cocktail," this is the remedy recommended by the US Navy. Take no more than twice per day and take only as needed in rough seas. Another combination is Phenergan (promethazine hydrochloride) 25-50 mg combined with Sudafed (ephedrine) 25-50 mg. And another choice is a combination of dextroamphetamine 5 mg and scopolamine .5 mg. These combinations should be taken one hour before sailing. Please be warned that these are strong drugs, not to be used casually. Dexedrine is an amphetamine, in the family of drugs known as psychostimulants. Amphetamines have a high potential for abuse and your doctor may not be willing to prescribe these. Administration of amphetamines for prolonged periods of time may lead to drug dependence and must be avoided. Read more about Dextroamphetamine.
Here's the link to the entire article. Cheesemans' Ecology Safaris: Seasickness Prevention
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Old 24-08-2013, 03:58   #7
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

Quote:
Originally Posted by unbusted67 View Post
I am a 50 ton captain who makes his living on the water and man do I get sea sick. It has actually gotten worse in the last three years. I really want to sail around the world some day, or at least do some major offshore work but I am really spooked by how disabled I get by it.

How is it that the military who has fighter pilots that pull major Gs and navy captains who go through rough weather not come up with a cure to seasickness? This is a major ailment that can make people incapable of completing basic tasks.

I am pretty bummed about this. I definitely once thought I would make a living out of delivering yachts and now after a dozen coastal deliveries doubt my ability to execute my job were the seas to kick up.

Isn't there a cure other than lying under an apple tree? Doesn't it exist?

It is my understanding that fighter pilots are tested for this sort of thing. I *know* our astronauts were. You haven't mentioned any methods you have tried to handle it. I know how incapacitating seasickness can be (thank goodness, not personally). I have a good friend who races, and during one race her crewmates put her in a harness and actually tied her to the mast to keep her safely in the place that would minimize it the most, and just cleaned up after her, but they were not only down a crew member but had a huge problem to handle as well. Needless to say they did dismally in that race.

What this friend of mine does is take Bonine the night before. It is supposed to work for 24 hours. This particular day, she had forgotten to take it the night before (a phone or watch alarm would probably fix that).

I follow her habit, and if the weather report reports rough weather, I take Bonine the night before. I've only been seasick once (before I tried the Bonine), and for me, it passed after one impressive demonstration of just what it can do to you. I know I'm lucky.

So what have you tried to prevent it?
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Old 24-08-2013, 04:01   #8
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

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Originally Posted by Neo View Post
I get seasick once or twice a year. Usually just suffered through it, but this year stocked the first aide kit with dramamine. Does the trick for me. Lots of other folk remedies out there. I read that the in the olden days they would plug one ear with cotton.

I don't tolerate dramimine well. It makes me extremely groggy and un-alert. *For me,* the Bonine does not do that, but I stock my first aid kit with a variety of choices. I had friends who sailed to my marina and back on someone else's boat but spent the night on mine. The weather report said rough seas for the trip back, so I had the mother and her children (at their choice, after reading the box themselves) take Bonine the night before, and even though they were beginners, they did not get sick. I'm quite sure it doesn't work for everyone.
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Old 24-08-2013, 04:03   #9
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
I get seasick just reading the 4,593,421,345th one of these questions about...seasickness.

Then skip it, and be glad you don't realize that it can be a very real problem for some people. And for those who think the poster should just go back through the archives, I'm going to say that when it's your problem sometimes someone else's twist on it might not be precisely what will help you. It's not the same as talking with other people about it yourself.
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Old 24-08-2013, 06:15   #10
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

If its gotten worse in the last 3 years there may be a medical problem with your ears. How is your HEARING? So a trip to an Ear Nose and Throat quack may be an idea.

My other idea, and this is serious althought most think I am being stupid when I say it, seasickness is a middle ear problem and I got over it with alcohol. Go out to sea and get plastered! The idea is to make your brain think you are drunk, not seasick.
Obviously you need someone with you to be the skipper.
Its worked on a number of my firends... but a notable exception was a few months ago when a girl on board got very happy... and then turned green... but had a happy coma.

Its worth a try because I have never been seasick since. It may take a couple of tries, but what a fun thing to repeat


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Old 24-08-2013, 06:25   #11
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

I buy the meclazine from Drugstore.com $5.99 for 100 chewable tablets. We have found no drowsy side effects from it but man does it help! I routinely give it to all on board on longer passages no matter the conditions. Even my very sea sick prone kids are fine below all day if they take just the one pill in the morning.
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Old 24-08-2013, 07:00   #12
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

My wife has thrown up in every ocean, and swears by the 24 hr Bonine. The other drugs wear off just about the time she needs them, and she can't keep the next dose down.

How long are you staying out?? Most people get adapted to the motion after 24-48 hours. I would suggest that you try a 4-5 day trip, and taper the Bonine off after 2 days. If you don't feel fine after 4 days at sea, you'd better give up your dreams of circumnavigating.

I used to feel queasy the first day or two and would use a scopolamine patch. Now my body just thinks that being tossed around is normal.

There is a lot of psychology in being seasick. I remember the first night out on one Transpac race where over half the crew was seasick in conditions that they usually had no problems with (25k of wind and 10' seas on a close reach). It was the thought of going out on the blue water that got to them. Same deal with the very experienced Volvo ocean racers--one of my friends did the leg from Auckland around the Horn, and he said the first night the the back hatch opened and Chris Dickson and the navigator stuck their heads out, threw up, then went back down below.

That's why I recommend the longer trip--right now, your mind worries about getting seasick and makes things worse. If you have successfully adapted once, you can tell your body that its a temporary condition.
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Old 24-08-2013, 07:02   #13
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

Suck on a couple of lemons and yes I am serious, I was skeptical at first but boy does it work wonders for my crew.
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Old 24-08-2013, 07:12   #14
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkJ View Post
If its gotten worse in the last 3 years there may be a medical problem with your ears. How is your HEARING? So a trip to an Ear Nose and Throat quack may be an idea.

My other idea, and this is serious althought most think I am being stupid when I say it, seasickness is a middle ear problem and I got over it with alcohol. Go out to sea and get plastered! The idea is to make your brain think you are drunk, not seasick.
Obviously you need someone with you to be the skipper.
Its worked on a number of my firends... but a notable exception was a few months ago when a girl on board got very happy... and then turned green... but had a happy coma.

Its worth a try because I have never been seasick since. It may take a couple of tries, but what a fun thing to repeat


Mark

I agree about having your ears, but not your hearing unless they want to do that also.

Do a few little tests (i've had several kinds of inner ear problems and they could all be mistaken for mal de mer on a boat). Sit straight up and turn your head rapidly from side to side. Do you have the slightest *hint* of dizziness?

Now look straight up, as if you were lying at the foot of the mast looking at the top. Only stay in that position for a second or two, and then bring your head back down. Any hint of dizziness?

A couple of things can happen. You can get fluid in there (there's already fluid, but too much), and it could just slosh around enough when you're sailing to confuse the little hairs in there that send balance signals to your brain. When this happens, dizzines and nausea rapidly follow.

Other people (like me) have what they call "top shelf" vertigo. There are little sacs in the inner ear that periodically drop little crystals down into those hairs. They're supposed to settle to the bottom of the hairs. I'm not sure what they do there -- but if they float freely, again, they can agitate those hairs and have them send false signals to your brain. If that's the case, a trained physical therapist can easily teach you the exercises you do to get the crystals to settle down where they belong.

I have to be very careful not to tilt my head back and keep it there, because it causes crystals to fall out of that sac and make chaos out of my life.

It can all be very subtle.

There are also medications that can help with this, but they make you pretty groggy and it's not a good idea to take them for more than a couple of days for other reasons realated to the dizziness and nausea.

Do you notice any change in your eyes when you get sick? The first time I had this, my eyes quickly into rapid nystagmus. That is, they shifted left and right multiple times each second, trying to adjust to the apparent lack of balance. Your eyes and your inner ear work together to help you stand upright. It affects in particular your depth perception, and when it happened to me, I wasn't able to drive for a couple of months.

I had "early warning signs" like I'm describing here but didn't pay attention to them. Now, when it happens, I can do the exercises (head turning is all it is, but in very specific ways) and fend off an episode.

This kind of thing can sneak up on you. That's why I'm heartily endorsing a visit to the ENT guy (or gal ).
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Old 24-08-2013, 07:34   #15
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Re: Sea Sickness Thread....Again

LABYRINTHITIS is a cause of seasickness of increasing intensity over time--you might want to get it checked out, as it will affect your ability to stand up on dry land.

there are more than one kind of seasickness...sleepiness is one form. when in motion, if you become drowsy and sleep a lot--you are suffering seasickness.

you may want to check out the wrist band solutions before trying drugs.
even ginger is a good try before drugs.. there are many remedies that are not drug related, therefore fewer side effects and better activity level on the part of the individual complaining of this malady.

there is much seasickness associated with unconscious or subconscious fear of --unknown, ocean, sailing, boats, etc...this will cure with booze and good day out on water..lol....or avoidance....


oh yeah--i nearly forgot to add ----but i wouldnt ever be accused of knowing this, especially since i worked over 30 yrs troubleshooting humans.....lol
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