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Air Sick


Sparker
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Well, I searched to see if anyone has discussed this and "air sick" only brought up results of Delorean saying he is sick of back to the future jokes. :P

 

So, here it goes. I have about 18 hours now in the R22 and 3-4 times I have gotten a little woozy at take off for the first 2-3 minutes of the flight. Not enough to make me throw up, but just uncomfortable.

 

Have any of you went through this? Is it just a phase? I don't want to get into this really far and have it get worse where I need to pop a Dramamine before every flight. If it is like this when I have the controls, how bad will it be when I have a new student as a CFI?

 

Thanks

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I have only experienced mild airsickness one time. I was solo and came into some pretty solid turbulence when crossing some mountains. It wasn't enough to make me throw up, but it was certainly uncomfortable. I have heard from several people that your body will adjust.

 

I vividly remember my first few flights and I'm sure my CFIs resistance to airsickness was tested... ;)

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If it only happens the first 2-3 minutes of flight it is not motion sickness. It is more likely to be some anxiety about flying. I think you are feeling nausea because of the excitement about your flight as the flight continues you start to feel more comfortable about the situation you are in an then you start to relax enough that the nausea goes away. If this is the case then I would say that if you continue your training this feeling will eventually go away as you develop your confidence in your instructor and yourself.

 

Motion sickness is something that usually happens sometime into the flight. Flying on a day when the air is hot, it’s bumpy, and you are making sudden movements with your head (i.e. looking around a lot). The only real cure at this point is to focus outside the cockpit and minimize your head movement, vent in some fresh air, and discontinue the flight as soon as practical. There are some other things that work also but it depends on your experience with motion sickness and how you can deal with it.

 

This is just my opinion about what you are experiencing. I wish you good luck and I hope you continue your training. I think you will do fine with more experience.

 

MHF

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I got some really hardcore spatial disorientation under the hood at night on a ridiculously windy and turbulent night flight once. Got kind of sick to my stomach after 1.8 hours of getting bumped around, but that's about it.

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I once got vertigo inside a stationary IFR sim... nearly chucked all over the dash lol. Had to pause the thing and get out and walk around for a few minutes. Was the first time the instructors had ever seen that before, motion sickness in a non-motion sim. :lol:
Oh man, if I'm in our sim for a long time and NOT IFR just flying around in it, I get sick. Everything around you is moving but since the sim is stationary I get sick most times. It's fine for IFR work cause the screens are just grey and don't change, but VFR when everything is moving and my body isn't gets me everytime. Never thought I was going to upchuck, but it will get me queesy.
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Non-motion sims are far worse than full-motion sims for inducing nausea. You see movement but feel nothing, and lots of people have problems with it. Every time I've been in one, the instructor has made it clear that if you feel it coming on, quit and get out. In one we got the pressure bracelets which are supposed to help, but I'm sceptical. Rapid out-of-sync movements can cause dizziness and worse.

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Oh man, if I'm in our sim for a long time and NOT IFR just flying around in it, I get sick. Everything around you is moving but since the sim is stationary I get sick most times. It's fine for IFR work cause the screens are just grey and don't change, but VFR when everything is moving and my body isn't gets me everytime. Never thought I was going to upchuck, but it will get me queesy.

 

 

Yepp 45 minutes, maybe an hour max in the sim is plenty for me. Then at least take a break and walk around a bit.

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Yeah I thought it was odd my instructors said they'd never seen anyone get ill from the sim. I thought it made sense, but that doesn't mean much haha.

 

In flight I've never been ill or even close. But I tell ya, a 35 minute IMC flight in rough turbulence... I've seen many green faced passengers. Lucky though, none blessed us with the smell of their half digested breakfast. I can only imagine that scene from Stand by Me.

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Been there, done that. I can't offer and remedies except dramamine, and maybe one of those bands that go on your wrist.

 

Ever try to barf throught the little window opening on a Cherokee?

 

Fuel fumes on a hot day aren't the best to breathe before a flight, try to stay upwind.

 

Later

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I've never been sick in flight, but I've come close. Back in the day, in the back of a C130 filled with paratroopers from the 82d Airborne, when one guy got sick it was a chain reaction, and the smell could get really bad. Never hurled, but it was close a couple of times. In helicopters, I've only had 2 pax hurl. One was a drunk cook, and the other was medicated. I took him in to the hospital for removal of debris in his eyes, and they told him the meds they gave him might make him sick. He got in with a full garbage bag, and did fine as we flew through a major cold front, all sorts of turbulence, but lost it after we punched out into the heat ahead of the front. He just put his head way down in the trash bag, and I never smelled a thing, even though he was in the front seat beside me. :o

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Sparker, I think it may be a phase. I did my Private and Commercial in the S300...when it came time for Instrument training, I suffered thru nausea while under the hood. I popped Dramamine to help but then sufferd its drowsy effects toward the end of each flight, NOT GOOD!

 

I began to cut the Dramamine pills in half, then thirds, then 4ths to wean off them. And I believe its frowned upon by FAA to use such drugs anyway. So just prior to checkride I found and used an electronic wristband. It used to be called a ReliefBand, but is called something else now after changing manufacturer/owner and was improved upon as well. IT WORKED, and what a boost of confidence that gave for the last few IFR training flights! It cost me like $80 on sale online. When you overcome this, keep it handy for your passengers. I think it cures as well as prevents motion sickness/vertigo.

 

Then nausea came back during Fly-It Sim use like so many others have said. I've not been in a sim since.

 

Then I suffered mild nausea the first couple minutes of the first few VFR flights in an R-22. That soon passed, now no problem.

 

In any case while in flight, if you can not land, or if you have no bag or container to puke into...put it down your shirt. I'd hate to endure something like that Seinfeld episode where he just can't get that stink out of his car.

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Generally, I try to bring at least one 1-gallon size ziplock bag & a small bottle of H2O for yack-attacks...I can't say that I/pax had even a close call in the helos (yet), but just a carry-over from the F/W world.

 

The only time I felt airsick was early in my F/W instr. training... ~2 hours into an IFR training flight from KEMT to KIFP, summer, late morning & a few years back... we were about 1/2 hour out from Laughlin, and, UH OH, went something like this after flying high altitude (8k) with consistent, moderate chop for the previous hour:

 

:mellow: <_ src="%7B___base_url___%7D/uploads/emoticons/default_huh.png" alt=":huh:"> :o .

 

 

He took controls for 20 minutes, I did the approach, got out and was :D.

Gotta love the instructors who actually LET you reach your LIMITS.

 

Had to deal with the aftereffects of first-time anxious passengers a couple of time tho...a lovely job.

 

For somebody else like the aircraft detailer.

 

 

-WATCH FOR THE WIRES-

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The first time I had a passenger get sick was in a glider, funny enough he was a helicopter pilot.

I have the electronic wristband from Sporty's and it works pretty well, if I have someone that gets motion sickness I'll strap that on them before we go flying and they all have come through fine.

 

Jerry

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I've never been sick in flight, but I've come close. Back in the day, in the back of a C130 filled with paratroopers from the 82d Airborne, when one guy got sick it was a chain reaction, and the smell could get really bad. Never hurled, but it was close a couple of times. In helicopters, I've only had 2 pax hurl. One was a drunk cook, and the other was medicated. I took him in to the hospital for removal of debris in his eyes, and they told him the meds they gave him might make him sick. He got in with a full garbage bag, and did fine as we flew through a major cold front, all sorts of turbulence, but lost it after we punched out into the heat ahead of the front. He just put his head way down in the trash bag, and I never smelled a thing, even though he was in the front seat beside me. :o

 

 

I've lost my lunch twice on military flights. Both times were in CH-47's. Those things just funnel terrible fumes through the entire airframe and when you're right around the middle, you have no reference on top of that. The first time was my first combat op and I was lucky enough to make it off the chopper only to puke when I hit the ground. The second time was a 3 hour flight from Kandahar to Bagram with a fuel stop on the way. I ate about 3 of those little mini pre-made omlets from the chow hall before we went. Made it to the fuel stop and started feeling better. Back on the aircraft... Lasted till about 15 minutes out of Bagram. All over my gear, all over some MP chick's assault pack, everywhere. Talk about a chain reaction...... Yikes! I've never seen a crew chief so pissed off in my entire life!!!

 

J-

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LifeApresMil, With my wife lasting no more than 1/2 hour in the helo (or 1/2 hour in an airplane or 20 seconds on a roller coaster, or any roundabout as a passenger in a car, etc) before she gets motion sickness, I'm looking for something. You really do like and recommend the wristband?

 

http://www.sportys.com/acb/showdetl.cfm?&a...product_id=4170

 

Does the dramamine work better than the wristband or should I go go right to morphine and knock her out?

I do try to get her mind off the motion issues by "hey, look at that", tracking the GPS, or changing frequencies for me, "get a picture of that" suggestions, or whatever, but that only works for that first 1/2 hour...

 

Dramamine pills

 

used an electronic wristband. It used to be called a ReliefBand, IT WORKED, It cost me like $80 on sale online. I think it cures as well as prevents motion sickness/vertigo.

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I do try to get her mind off the motion issues by "hey, look at that", tracking the GPS, or changing frequencies for me, "get a picture of that" suggestions, or whatever, but that only works for that first 1/2 hour...

 

 

Having someone look at things inside the cockpit or taking pictures is probably the worst thing you can have someone do to prevent motion sickness. Those things will just speed it up. The best way I have found to prevent or minimize the symptoms are to vent in fresh air and focus on something outside the cockpit at a distance. Minimizing the movement especially the head reduces the symptoms of motion sickness. Also you don't want to eat a big meal before flying.

 

I have never tried the wrist band and unless I am mistaken, Dramamine is not allowed to be taken by pilots because of the effects of drowsiness that can occur.

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Well, I searched to see if anyone has discussed this and "air sick" only brought up results of Delorean saying he is sick of back to the future jokes. :P

 

So, here it goes. I have about 18 hours now in the R22 and 3-4 times I have gotten a little woozy at take off for the first 2-3 minutes of the flight. Not enough to make me throw up, but just uncomfortable.

 

Yeah, very sick of the BTTF jokes when rollin' in the Delo.

 

Air sick though? Yep, 3200 hrs and 15 yrs of flying and I will get sick as a dog after 5-10 minutes in the back of a helicopter or small airplane. I get really sick in non-motion sims too. Not so much if I'm flying, but if I'm running the computer or standing behind it. Seeing that big screen move, but not the wall around it will mess you up!

 

I got sick my first 100+ hrs in airplanes. All the stalls, s-turns, ground ref stuff wreaked havoc on me. Never got sick flying the helicopter though (but that was after that first 100 hrs).

 

Just make sure you're looking out in front of you and not at the ground. That's the number 1 culpret of airsickness from what I've seen with students. Hot weather and nerves, doesn't help either. Train in the morning, keep the air vents open, and keep you eyes on the horizon. You might try one of those wirst bands--works for some people.

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In fixed wing the best remedy I found is fresh air and letting them fly. It keeps them looking outside and from making fast head movements but you have to catch them before they turn green.

 

Jerry

Edited by IFLYEVERYTHING
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Thanks for all the replies everyone! My last few flight have been better, the only time I felt a little woozy was after a few patterns, turning cross-wind after takeoff from a taxiway I looked down at the runway for a long time because we were about to cross it. The combo of entering the turn as I turned my head and leaned as far as possible must have messed with me. Anyway I think it is getting better, and it is great to know I'm not the only pilot to deal with it :wacko:

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You might be holding your breath. Try talking even when there is no passenger. It is impossible to talk and not breathe.

 

My wife would sometimes hold her breath when concentrating on slow rolls.

 

I fly airplane acrobatics. I am very rarely inertially affected. Sometimes 1-1/2 snap rolls or rolling turns can get to me. When I ride through aerobatics, I can suffer some beginning of nausea.

 

Be very sensitive when taking passengers for rides. Watch carefully if a person stops talking, or has a stiff body position. My old flight instructor, Crazy Dave, taught me many bad things but he did have some good advice in this area: "It is the pilots responsibility to clean up any mess made by a passenger." Make sure that you bring your passengers back in good shape, leave them feeling that it was a good experience.

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I am a brand new student, although I have been up with others many times. I have never felt even close to sick until.....I started to learn how to hover myself. I think fresh air, keeping my horizon focus in the right place and relaxing should help - my instructor was too busy laughing to feel sick haha..

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