Stugeron for seasickness

I’ve been deeply reluctant to take any western medicines in my minor struggle with seasickness. Not because I am opposed to western medicine – indeed, I ingest a veritable cocktail of drugs of varying scheduling status every morning before getting out of bed – but because I didn’t want to add another chemical dependency to my life! Before our recent trip to Gansbaai for some shark cage diving (or “shark cave diving”, as my sister repeatedly refers to it), however, I decided that the length of the trip (four hours at sea in winter) and the cost (not insignificant) were compelling arguments in favour of some strong drugs.


Following the advice of the cage diving operator we originally booked with, I took one Stugeron tablet the night before our trip, and one again about an hour before we climbed on the boat. Stugeron is also known as Cinnarizine and is safe for scuba divers to use, and is available over the counter at the pharmacy.

The only side effect that was noticeable was intense grumpiness, apparently worse than my usual morning funk – according to Tony. I don’t remember feeling specially drowsy (aside from the normal sleepiness associated with it being 0530 – a full two hours before I usually wake up).

I didn’t have any problems with seasickness in Gansbaai at all. I was acutely aware that the circumstances were such that I’d usually have gotten sick – large swells, stationary boat with the engines running, and often no clear horizon to look at because of the number of people standing around looking for sharks- but I was fine. Even the deathly gurglings and litres of vomit produced (in neat little white paper bags) by the only other South African on board, a gentleman from Durban who was almost paralytic for the entire trip, did not set me off.

I took Stugeron again two weekends ago, in preparation for the long boat ride out to the SS Lusitania off Cape Point. It definitely enhanced my feelings of grumpiness, but this was resolved as soon as I got into the water. Clearly this is a side effect to bear in mind.

I’m quite pleased about this development in my attempts to appear a normal human being (and maybe one day a proper pirate) whilst on the water. I’ve been reluctant to try Stugeron and other drugs of its ilk, hoping that apples, crackers, ginger and positive thinking will make future trips to Sodwana less physically taxing, but now that I have tested it (twice) with success I’m willing to try it again.

Published by


Lapsed mathematician, creator of order, formulator of hypotheses. Lover of the ocean, being outdoors, the bush, reading, photography, travelling (especially in Africa) and road trips.

Leave a Reply