I'm with ODwyerPW on this topic.
If a boat starts heaving, then so do I, but I also cannot tolerate the side effects of medications, so I deal with it in the same manner.
And even though I've been on close to 300 flights, the effects of motion sickness are still random and do not diminish. Rough chop and sudden drops in altitude don't seem to bother me, and of course smooth flights are just fine, but continuous rolling, yawing or pitching motions of an aircraft first make me cold sweat and then my mouth starts watering - and I know what comes next!!
Although motion sickness has only resulted in me puking on about 4 out of 300 flights, after my first disastrous experience, I have a plan:
- ensure there is a sickness bag available at my seat when I board an aircraft
- ask for one if there is not
- have the bag ready in my hand if the aircraft starts to sway
What has to be considered, is often the motion (turbulence) associated with causing the sickness for an individual also results in the seatbelt light going on, or for someone like me, the motion caused by crosswinds during approach or hold patterns are both situations where pax must remain seated, so heading for the lav is not an acceptable option.
If there is another pax sitting beside me and I start to feel sick, I will tell them what to expect. This is only fair. If I do throw up, I usually feel too dreadful to be embarrassed, but don't need pity either. I dispose of the used bag in the lav trash receptacle myself at the end of the flight. As an adult, I don't expect an FA
to do this for me.
As for pax throwing up on seats, in the aisle, on window sidewalls, overhead bins, or on other pax, sometimes airsickness is sudden, unexpected and there wasn't time to react. Years ago, I learned the hard way when I experienced airsickness the first time and tried to ignore the symptoms and then threw up all over the unoccupied aisle seat and aisle carpet on a brand new B767-300 during approach to YVR
I felt tremendous shame and guilt for the mess I made of the cabin of that new aircraft, especially with the 767 being my favorite plane, and this just compounded the feeling of dread and prolonged the sickness. I can hardly begin to explain how embarrassing this was. When we reached the gate, an FA
sprinkled the areas with some kind of disinfectant and tried to assure me everything was fine, but I just could not stop apologizing for the mess I made. The FA
refused to let me clean it up. I still feel enough guilt from that experience that I will do everything I can to prevent it from happening again.