Motion sickness is one of the most common ailments that passengers suffer from, worldwide. But it could be soon a thing of the past owing to some remarkable innovation.
A British farmer seems to have developed special sunglasses that can end the ill effects of traveling in a constantly moving vehicle. The farmer, by the name of Tim Flaxman, who himself suffered from severe motion sickness, got so sick of the feeling that he decided to investigate the causes behind the same and eventually came up with such a simple, yet brilliant concept of altering the visual inputs to reduce effects of vehicular motion.
His discovery is simple. He realized that the ill effects of motion ceased when he allowed only one of his eyes to see. By blocking out one eye completely, he was able to virtually eliminate all forms and symptoms of motion sickness including nausea, vomiting and so on.
Nicknamed TravelShades, the sunglasses have one of the eye blacked out or opaque, while allowing complete vision in the other. This ensures the ability to see, but eliminates motion sickness. The sunglasses essentially prevent the wearer from ‘seeing’ motion. The design of the sunglasses is symmetrical. In other words, these sunglasses can be used to cover either of the eye. Simply flip the glasses to cover whichever eye the wearer wants and motion sickness will be taken care of, the farmer claims.
This might have seemed as a prank, but Flaxman claims he has serious investors. Though presently unnamed, a British company has already shown interest. Additionally, Lloyds Pharmacy is claimed to have expressed the desire to stock the glasses, which needless to say, can be bought without any prescription. If that’s not all, his invention was recently featured on Make Me a Millionaire Inventor, where test subjects claimed to have felt a huge difference.
Flaxman claims to have traveled extensively wearing the glasses to test the effectiveness and claims they work on all modes of travel, including, any land, sea or air transport.
“I have flown to France, which was fantastic, traveled round Europe in the car and tested them at sea. I am thrilled. It has liberated me,” he said to The Sunday Times.
Scientifically, the glasses make sense. Travel, or motion, sickness is caused by the disconnect between what the body is feeling and the visual signals that are being sent to the brain at that time. An area of the brain which controls vomiting, called postrema, is abnormally activated when there is an imbalance between these two signals and this triggers nausea and sickness.
TravelShades simply stop the conflicting signals by blocking off the visual motion signals. It does so by cutting vision from 3D to 2D. Covering one eye restricts the vision to 2D and that, Flaxman claims, is how the sunglasses relives people from motion sickness. Wonder the glasses will help iOS 7 users?
[Images via Bing]