For many parents, car trips with a toddler can be an anxiety-inducing experience. For some toddlers, the motion of being in a car can cause them to become nauseous and start vomiting.
This can make for a stressful situation for both parent and child, but there are ways to help your toddler cope with the feeling of nausea while in the car.
In this blog post, we’ll look at how to help reduce your toddler’s nausea during car trips. With these strategies in place, you should find that your next family road trip goes smoother than ever before!
Why do toddlers vomit during car trips?
- They’re not used to the motion. Different kids have different thresholds for how sensitive they are to motion.
- The motion of a car ride can cause some kids to become nauseous and even vomit.
- The conditions of the car ride also matter. A bumpy ride in traffic with lots of starts and stops can induce vomiting.
- Ventilation matters too. It can get stuffy inside the car, especially during long rides if there are many people riding at the same time.
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How to deal with toddler nausea during car trips?
1. Get the right car seat.
Be sure you have the right car seat and position for your age. This is necessary not just to help prevent nausea, but also for safety.
The car seat must be installed correctly to be sturdy. While some may suggest using a cushion or pillow, it is not recommended to add these since they may compromise the car seat’s safety.
Also, make sure that your child is not too warm, and that the car seat straps are adjusted for the child’s current size. Toddlers can grow fast, so the adjustments made a couple of months ago may be too tight already!
2. Give light snacks, but avoid heavy meals.
Avoid heavy meals before a trip. Light snacks such as a banana or a slice of bread are great. Light snacks, such as fresh or dried fruit, may also help reduce nausea during the ride.
3. Have distractions ready.
Keep your child’s attention focused on something other than the motion of the car.
Music or audiobooks can be a great way to distract them, as well as engage them in conversations about what they see out the window.
You can also try giving them small toys or books to play with.
Some would use a mobile phone or tablet as a distraction during a car ride. However, this can worsen nausea since the child needs to focus closely on the screen (which is also moving during the ride). Most videos for toddlers also have fast motion which can worsen nausea. Personally, even as an adult, I get nauseous trying to look at my phone while in a moving car!
4. Encourage your toddler to look out the window.
Looking at something in the distance such as mountains or trees may help reduce nausea. Use car games such as “I Spy” to encourage your toddler to look at something in the distance.
5. Speak with your pediatrician.
If none of these tips work and your child still experiences severe nausea and vomiting, then it may be time to consider medication. If this is the case, speak to your pediatrician to determine the best course of action.
By following these tips, you can help reduce your toddler’s nausea during car trips and make family travel smoother than ever before. Remember that every child and every situation is unique, so it may take some trial and error as you figure out what works best for your child.
Good luck and happy travels!