Motion sickness can happen when you are on a roller coaster ride, on a boat, or sitting in the backseat of a car. Common symptoms can range from mild to serious, and can include dizziness, generally feeling unwell and tired, excessive production of saliva, headache, nausea, vomiting, burping and sweating (1). Most people nerve ask why, but rather take the magic pill.
Motion sickness occurs when there is a mismatch between the three key system within the body. “Balance is comprised of an integration of three main senses: visual senses, inner ear senses and proprioception or information from the joints. In terms of where in the body the proprioceptive system is most important, or where we can have the most influence, the cervical spine and particularly the top two joints in the neck have an exponential amount of leverage. That influences this. Straight away, chiropractors can have a great impact just on that.” said Dr Rinaudo(2).
Dr Carlo Rinaudo’s (PhD candidate on the topic of vestibular rehabilitation) work is focused on balance and dizziness conditions. He said evidence is now showing us that the connection between the vestibular system and the spine is huge(2).
On top of a Chiropractor’s work on the upper cervical spine, feedback from all joints on the body are being sent and processed by your brain. When there is an error in the joint position there is an error in the feedback. We have research showing spinal adjustment have great impact on balance improvement and falls prevention in older population(3).
With limited research we have to date, we cannot claim chiropractic can cure motion sickness. However, chiropractic may help improve your overall body balance.
A quick challenge is to stand on one leg for 10 seconds, like how a flamingo would, with eyes closed. If you are struggling with the challenge, maybe it’s time to have a chat with us and see how we may be able to help.
1. Goverment VS. Motion Sickness 2020 [Available from: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/HealthyLiving/motion-sickness.
2. Foundation ASRF. Motion Sickness: More Than Nausea And Vomiting 2016 [updated 29 March 2016. Available from: https://spinalresearch.com.au/motion-sickness-nausea-vomiting/.
3. Holt KR, Haavik H, Elley CR. The effects of manual therapy on balance and falls: a systematic review. Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics. 2012;35(3):227-34.
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