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Pediatrics/Anti-nausea medication (for motion) for not quite 2 year old



My daughter will be 2 in January.  We are going on a cruise.  I don't like to give her medicine unnecessarily (I've given her Tylenol only about 4 times in her life).

My husband gets very seasick and uses patches behind his ear and is fine.  I don't know if my daughter will have any motion sickness, but I wanted to be prepared with something just in case.

I've looked at Gravol (used in Canada - drug name dimenhydrinate) that always worked well for me as a kid.  However, the labelling indicates it can't be used by children under 2 unless advised by a physician.  She'll be 2 months short of 2 at the time we cruise.  I'm guessing it may not have been tested on younger children so the safety of the drug can't be guaranteed in those under 2.  Although she will be close to that age, it is probably best to abide by the labelling and not chance it.

Is there anything I could take with me that might help her in case she does get seasick?  She has never been carsick, but my husband feels awful without his patch, so I wouldn't want my daughter feeling that if she does get sick.

Thank you for your input!

Hi, Lisa,

I think that if you responded to the dimenhydrinate as a child, this would be a good place to start with your daughter.  I would do a test dose, maybe like that for a three year old, and make sure it doesn't unduly sedate her or paradoxically agitate her.  The testing hasn't been done, but this in no way suggests it will be harmful.  We use a lot of meds like this.  Diphenhydramine or Benadryl, 1 tsp or 12.5 mg is another thing that may work.  Always try to be sure no side effects that will interfere with your trip.  

Have fun!  Dr. Olson


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David Olson, MD


I would be happy to attempt to answer any questions about general pediatric topics, either medical issues or behavioral issues. This would include all the various questions one receives in a busy pediatric practice. I`m a board certified pediatrician in northern Michigan and have been in practice for over 15 years. I enjoy the teaching role I have in our practice and would enjoy the opportunity to help others with their pediatric problems.

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