What causes you to vomit?
Vomiting is an essential response your body has to poisons and toxins. Stop yourself from vomiting by washing your hands regularly, throwing out old food, and taking preventive medication to avoid seasickness and migraines.
Vomiting is not the most pleasant experience. It is difficult and does not feel good. It can also be an essential response your body has to poisons and toxins, though. That said, if you find you are vomiting regularly or in a way that feels out of control, you may need to learn strategies to stop vomiting: Cures are discussed below.
Vomiting happens when your body perceives a threat. It then empties itself protectively from something it may see as a poison. It does this by emptying the contents of your stomach.
Depending on the situation, your body may perceive different things as threats. For example, a threat could be something you eat, too much alcohol in your bloodstream, a bacterial infection such as E.coli, or a variety of other triggers. Some of the leading causes of vomiting are:
- Gastroenteritis. Also known as the stomach flu, this is a widespread virus. It is spread through touching your nose, mouth, or eyes after being exposed to the infection. You can also get it from eating food with the virus in it. It usually results in one to three days of nausea and vomiting. There is no treatment other than waiting for it to end and staying hydrated.
- Food poisoning. This common term refers to instances when you experience the symptoms of an extensive array of non-specific symptoms such as E. coli, listeria, or salmonella. You may get food poisoning after you eat food that is infected by these bacteria. Typically, the only cure for it is to vomit out the bacteria, which will usually happen within 48 hours of getting food poisoning. Some cases, though, may require you to go to a hospital and receive antibiotics.
- Motion sickness. Some people experience intense nausea and the need to vomit when reading in a car or on a boat. This is caused by the discrepancy between motion detected by your inner ear and what you see.
- Pregnancy. Nausea and vomiting is a common symptom throughout pregnancy. Little is understood about why or what causes this need to vomit in pregnant women. Usually, symptoms of nausea and vomiting start after four weeks of being pregnant and end around fourteen weeks of pregnancy. There is not much you can do for symptom relief for nausea and vomiting while pregnant other than resting and hydrating.
- Acid reflux. This is a condition where your digestive system does not function as it should. It causes stomach acid and food to come up through your esophagus. The taste of the stomach acid can then cause you to vomit. Treatment for this condition usually means lifestyle and diet changes. You can also take antacids for short-term relief.
- Stress. You may be familiar with the feeling of queasiness before an important event or public speaking engagement, or perhaps this feeling comes about during specific meetings or personal conversations. Either way, events in your life that cause intense emotion affect your body in a way that makes you feel nauseous and makes you throw up. The only way to prevent or treat this is through stress management.
Does vomiting make you feel better?
Even though vomiting can feel stressful and seem to be a cause for concern, it often is not. Vomiting can help you feel better, but there are certain situations in which seeking out a doctor may be imperative. These could occur when you have the following symptoms:
How do I stop myself from vomiting?
There are no definite “stop vomiting” cures because vomiting occurs for so many reasons. Vomiting also can help you and save you from being poisoned.
However, some ways to reduce the chances that you will want to vomit are:
- Wash your hands regularly. Use warm water and soap to scrub your fingers and hands regularly. To properly clean your hands, do this for at least 30 seconds at a time, and make sure to also scrub underneath your fingernails. This is one of the best defenses against viruses and bacteria.
- Be mindful of your food. Make sure to throw out any food that may be too old for consumption. This will help you to reduce the risk of getting food poisoning.
- Get medications. If you are particularly sensitive to motion sickness or seasickness, there are preventative medications you can take to help with your symptoms. Similarly, if you frequently experience migraines, taking your migraine medication at the onset of migraines helps you not to feel as nauseous.
Medically Reviewed on 11/22/2021
Cleveland Clinic: “Vomiting 101: Why You Throw Up and the Best Way to Recover.”
GoHealth Urgent Care: “What Causes Vomiting? 7 Reasons Why and How to Ease It.”
NHS inform: “Vomiting in adults.”
Queensland Health: “Spewing 101: Why am I vomiting?”