People often get confused with words Nausea & Vomiting. Nausea is an uneasiness of the stomach that often comes before vomiting. It is that feeling of discomfort that we might vomit, but are not actually vomiting. In nausea, people urge to vomit whereas; vomiting is the forcible voluntary or involuntary emptying of stomach contents out of a mouth. It is an uncontrollable reflex that expels the contents of the stomach through the esophagus and out of the mouth. It is also called “throwing up.”
Causes of Nausea & Vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are not diseases, they are symptoms. The most common causes of nausea are an intense pain due to injury or illness and the first trimester of pregnancy. Many other common problems may cause nausea and vomiting, including:
- Food allergies
- Infections of the stomach or food poisoning
- Medicines or medical treatments, such as cancer chemotherapy or radiation treatment
- Migraine headaches
- Morning sickness during pregnancy
- Severe pain, such as with kidney stones
- Seasickness or motion sickness
- Emotional Stress
- Exposure to chemical toxins
The causes of vomiting differ according to age. For children, it is frequent for vomiting to occur from a viral infection, food poisoning, milk allergy, motion sickness, overeating or feeding, coughing, or blocked intestines and illnesses in which the child has a high fever. In adults a bacterial or viral infection or a type of food poisoning usually causes vomiting. Elderly people who start to vomit unpredictably may have an underlying problem such as a urinary tract infection or pneumonia. Repeated vomiting can cause dehydration, especially among the very old and very young. In some cases, vomiting can also be the result of other illnesses, especially if they lead to a headache or high fever. Intense menstrual pain also creates nausea and vomiting. Furthermore, the timing of nausea or vomiting can indicate the cause. When appearing shortly after a having meal, nausea or vomiting may be caused by food poisoning, gastritis, an ulcer etc.
Nausea and Vomiting during pregnancy
As we may have already heard and seen, most of the women have nausea and vomiting during the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. In most cases, it is mild and does not need any specific treatment. In more severe cases, an anti-sickness medicine is sometimes used.
Since vomiting mostly happens due to food allergies and food poisoning, we should make sure that we are not having those unsafe foods. Persistent nausea and vomiting may require medical help.
Treatments for Nausea & Vomiting
As nausea is a common condition, we may treat it at home. Some methods are helpful which are included below.
- Consuming only light, plain foods, such as bread and rice
- Avoiding any foods that have strong flavours, are very sweet, or are greasy or fried.
- Drinking cold liquids.
- Drinking a cup of ginger tea.
- Eating smaller amount of meals frequently
In case of vomiting, following ways might be helpful. Drinking a large number of clear fluids to remain hydrated is crucial because dehydration further worsens the condition. Similarly, we should avoid solid foods of any kind until vomiting stops. We should not use medications that may upset our stomachs, such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, and blood thinners and in this case, it is better to consult with a doctor. Oral rehydration solution can be used to replace lost electrolytes.