Why do some people get it and others don’t?
Much of what there is to know about motion sickness is fairly well-established, but why some people get it while others don’t remains a bit of a scientific mystery. All we know for sure is that some people are more sensitive to the dissonance between what the body is sensing and what is actually happening in terms of motion, according to Susan Besser, MD, who practices primary care and family medicine at Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore. Some scientists believe that sensitivity may run in families. Others believe the sensitivity may be acquired, or eliminated, as the case may be. For example, babies and children often grown out of car sickness. And Murray Grossan, MD points out that while Chinese natives tend to get train sick, Chinese-Americans tend not to; he explains that in China, there is less opportunity to acclimate to the sensations that cause motion sickness than there is in America. He also points out that ice skaters are less likely to experience car sickness. What all these theories have in common is dissonance, Tom Stoffregen, PhD, a professor of kinesiology at the University of Minnesota, pointed out to the Atlantic, between what the body is used to and what it’s experiencing.
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