sea-bands for motion sickness, better than sleeping pills, acupressure wrist bands

If you sleep well, you may not realize how lucky you are. Those who have difficulty sleeping are faced with a tough dilemma. Sleep deprivation is bad for your health, as many studies have shown. On the other hand, people who take sleeping pills are susceptible to a range of side effects, from heartburn to dementia. Could inexpensive acupressure wrist bands help solve this problem and offer sleep without side effects?

Acupressure Wrist Bands for Insomnia:

Q. I read in your column about a mother who purchased Sea-Bands for her son who had trouble sleeping. These elastic wrist bands are sold to counteract nausea and motion sickness, but they helped her son sleep.
Having had trouble sleeping myself, I bought a pair of Sea-Bands and tried them out. They worked the first night and have kept on working.

Of course, I know this quick remedy won’t work for all insomniacs. I told my doctor about it and he shrugged and said nothing. But I hope that others will try it and benefit.

A. Sea-Bands are elastic wrist bands with an embedded plastic button that is supposed to be placed over an acupressure point. For getting to sleep, the point is called the Inner Gate. It is located between the two tendons on the inner side of the wrist, about three finger widths from the crease where the hand meets the wrist.

Studies of Acupressure Wrist Bands:

A review of four studies on acupressure suggests that this technique can improve sleep for some people (Sleep Medicine Reviews, Feb. 2018). The acupressure wrist bands are cheap and readily accessible. As a result, scientists may not have the incentive or funding to study their effectiveness further. Consequently, you may need to do your own research.

To find out if they work for you, you might need to do an “N of 1” study. That’s a trial in which you try them out and attempt to keep other variables the same as when you are not wearing acupressure wrist bands. If you do the experiment, please let us know in the comments below what results you get.

Get The Graedons' Favorite Home Remedies Health Guide for FREE

Join our daily email newsletter with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies AND you'll get a copy of our brand new full-length health guide — for FREE!

  1. Mary
    Milton, WA

    They work for me now. At first I was putting them in the wrong spot, then started moving them around until I found the right spot and now they work every night.

  2. Roy

    where do you get these bands?

    • Ginny

      Any pharmacy has them.

  3. Jean

    The acupressure bands did not work for me. If anything, the pressure made it harder to get to sleep.

    I hope this does not deter others from trying these inexpensive bands.

  4. Kate

    I have used these bands since reading about them here two or three years ago, and they really seem to help. I have no trouble at all going to sleep, but usually wake up sometime in the middle of the night. That’s when I put the bands on, and most of the time I am asleep again in five or ten minutes. Also used them for seasickness on a ship. Great little product.

  5. mary 3

    I know nothing, but would think worn before bed for some time perhaps? Then through the night?
    Wearing all day does not sound reasonable.
    Good luck

  6. Dr. Richard
    Calabria, Italy

    This is a great point for calming the nerves and is also used on flights for those suffering from motion sickness. Clearly with no contraindications, I support the use of the points. Unfortunately, the doctor was not interested, and that is why we support the People’s Pharmacy., even from Tropea, Calabria, Italy. And we can also just stimulate this point gently or apply some vicks vapor rub to the point for a good effect as well.

  7. Antoinette
    New York

    I too have issues falling and staying asleep! I tried the bands! I found they were of no help what so ever! But thank you for providing other options other than medications.

  8. Connie

    I’ve used these bands (two different sets) for motion sickness in cars as well as airplanes, and they do work. I didn’t like the side effects of pills and really needed relief, especially while flying. You do have to put the bands on correctly, but after that you can forget about them and enjoy your travel. I would recommend them for everyone.

  9. Pat

    I used bands on both wrists and at first it was WONDERFUL — I’d sleep more hours, through the night without waking, woke up refreshed, for the first time in several years. Thought it was a miracle!

    But over time (months) they became less effective and no longer gave me the sleep benefit. I wondered if the acupressure point got “worn out” from the over-use?

    So now I only use them, and on one wrist, periodically — maybe once a week — and I alternate arms so that I’m only using it every other week or so. And I DO get the sleep benefit . I’m just sorry I can’t do it all the time!

    • Marilyn

      Did you buy new ones to see if the old ones were worn out??? To me, maybe they did get worn out so get new ones. It’s not a big investment to get good sleep.

  10. Linda K

    Will try the bands. I have had some success with Instasleep, an OTC melt from some CVS stores. I try not taking Temazapem prescription drug

  11. Joanna

    when do you wear the band just before bed? or all day

    • Patty

      I think most folks just wear them to bed, but they can be worn during the day for motion sickness as well. You don’t need to buy the Sea Band brand. There are many inexpensive knock-offs around. I got multiple pairs for the same price.

      The band mimics what was used for ages by tying a pebble or dried bean tightly against your wrist. Be sure to look online for instructions for exact placement. There is an exact spot on the wrist where it goes, and I have to look it up each time.

      Beware that the bands are quite tight in order to keep the button pressed into the right spot. Some people find them very uncomfortable, but they are cheap enough to try out. You could actually make them yourself from elastic and a dried bean if you sew.

What Do You Think?

We invite you to share your thoughts with others, but remember that our comment section is a public forum. Please do not use your full first and last name if you want to keep details of your medical history anonymous. A first name and last initial or a pseudonym is acceptable. Advice from other commenters on this website is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. Stopping medication suddenly could result in serious harm. We expect comments to be civil in tone and language. By commenting, you agree to abide by our commenting policy and website terms & conditions. Comments that do not follow these policies will not be posted. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Your cart

Shipping and discount codes are added at checkout.