How To Not Throw Up: 8 Tips To Avoid Vomiting

By ReGain Editorial Team|Updated July 12, 2022
CheckedMedically Reviewed By Kelly Kampf, LCSW

If you are vomiting, your brain has told your body that there is something harmful in your stomach, and it needs to be expelled.

Vomiting is not an illness. It is a symptom. There are various causes of vomiting, but it’s important to remember that the message to vomit comes from your brain as well as your gut. The causes for vomiting, and the tips to avoid vomiting, can be mental and physical.

Why Am I Vomiting?

Before covering ways to avoid vomiting, let’s consider the causes of vomiting in adults.

The primary reasons that an adult may be vomiting include the following:

Could Your Vomiting Be Related To Your Mental Health?
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  • The early stages of pregnancy
  • Food poisoning
  • Stomach bugs, which are viral or bacterial infections
  • Motion sickness or seasickness
  • Migraines
  • Chemotherapy
  • Medication
  • Alcohol
  • Anxiety
  • Severe Pain
  • Concussion
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Gallstones
  • Acid Reflux
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Overeating
  • Some forms of cancer
  • Bulimia
  • A reaction to unpleasant smells, images, or tastes
  • Heart attack
  • Appendicitis

As you can see, there are many reasons, both serious and non-serious, that a person can be vomiting. But luckily, the ways to avoid nausea are relatively universal, so our tips apply to vomit as a result of almost all these conditions.

8 Tips To Avoid Vomiting

1)    Avoid Acidic Drinks

When you vomit, you lose a lot of fluids. When your stomach is upset, there is a high likelihood that you are dehydrated.

You should drink water and avoid acidic drinks. Acidic drinks can aggravate upper gastrointestinal issues like ulcers and acid reflux.

Fluids to avoid include lemonade, pineapple juice, apple juice, orange juice, and soda. Instead, drink water, sports drinks, and broths.

2)    Stick To Safe Foods

Even if you don’t have an appetite, you still need food for sustenance and energy.

Stick to bland, easy-to-digest foods. Eat very small meals and eat them slowly. Some safe foods include crackers, pretzels, and toast.

Ginger has also been shown by multiple studies to aid with nausea from chemotherapy and pregnancy.

If you are experiencing an aversion to the smell of food, which is particularly common in pregnant women, then try sticking with cold foods like Jell-O, yogurt, pudding, and custard, which don’t produce strong odors.

3)    Try Wrist Acupressure

This traditional Chinese method of handling nausea was later confirmed to be effective by modern medicine.

To try this method, apply pressure to the upper part of your wrist, underneath your palm, and massage in small circles for about three minutes. Many patients report feeling significantly healthier after trying this acupressure.

4)    Aromatherapy

Certain smells can be quite calming, both for nausea and relaxation.

Essential oils or room diffusers may emit smells of clove, lemon, lavender, chamomile, rose, or peppermint.

Some studies have suggested merely cutting open a lemon and inhaling its scent if you don’t have the tools or oils.

5)    Anti-Nausea Medications

If the vomiting has become such a nuisance that it’s interfering with your daily happiness and quality of life, various antiemetics might help relieve your problem.

Good medications for vomiting include Pepto-Bismol and Kaopectate, which contain bismuth subsalicylate. These are especially effective if your vomiting is caused by food poisoning.

If your vomiting is caused by motion sickness, Dramamine and other H1 blockers work by blocking the receptors responsible for stimulating vomiting.

For all guidance regarding medication, please consult a licensed medical professional.

6)    Speak To A Counselor

Sometimes vomiting is a symptom of a mental health condition. These mental health conditions could be anxiety-related or perhaps are contributed to by an unhealthy relationship with food.

Even if you’re unsure if you’re experiencing a mental health condition, speaking with a licensed counselor can help tremendously in helping you work through the physical and emotional stress you may be experiencing from vomiting.

There are plenty of options for counselors, both online and in person. Online counseling has become quite popular in recent years because it offers privacy and the comfort of having sessions in your own home.

7)    Speak To A Counselor About Anxiety

Nausea is a very common symptom of severe anxiety. The nervous system and the chemical responses between the mind and the stomach are very closely linked.

When anxiety triggers your fight or flight response, it causes nausea in the stomach. Increased focus on this nausea may lead to vomiting. This does not mean that the vomiting is intentional. In fact, it’s a typical response to anxiety to focus on the perceived problem.

A counselor may help you with anxiety or at least offer tips to not control you.

You can also try specific home remedies for vomiting from anxiety. Some options to prevent anxiety-induced nausea include:

  • Eating Healthy
    • Avoid fried foods and acidic drinks. Your stomach knows when it’s full of nutrient-rich food that it needs to stay healthy, and it’s less likely to reject foods and drinks that are good for you. If you are constantly vomiting and have no appetite, it’s best to eat bland foods like toast, pretzels, crackers, Jell-O, soup broth, and pudding. Replenish your lost fluids with water and sports drinks.
  • Distractions
    • It’s a normal reaction to focus on your nausea. Perhaps you are panicking about throwing up or subconsciously believing that you can solve it by focusing on a problem. But when it comes to nausea, the best thing you can do is take your mind elsewhere. This may mean focusing on your breath or distracting yourself with a book or a movie. We always feel worse when we’re thinking about how bad we think.
  • Exercise
Could Your Vomiting Be Related To Your Mental Health?

  • Maybe you’re not in the mood, but exercise can be the perfect distraction, and it can keep your heart rate and breath steady. Exercise is also an effective stress reliever. Consider yoga, which includes the added benefit of meditation. You could also take a session, dance, or follow an online video. Exercise can be social, silly, calming, and confidence-boosting. You don’t need to become a fanatic overnight. Sometimes a simple walk is enough to increase your heart rate and remove you from a stressful situation.

If you worry about an anxiety disorder affecting your relationship health or the mental health of your loved ones, consider a free consultation with ReGain.Us. After one free class, the counselor will tell you if you should invest in further psychological help.

Sometimes anxiety stems from a chemical imbalance, and sometimes it stems from a negative work or home environment. A counselor can help you spot the difference between the things inside and outside of your control and help you find resources to get out of adverse situations.

8)    Stop Drinking Alcohol

Drinking until you vomit is an example of binge drinking, and it can have very adverse effects on your physical and mental health.

Remember, you don’t need alcohol to be social, fun, and calm. You can enjoy social events, dance, and relax without drinking. Just sip on a soda or ginger ale, and you’ll end up saving money anyway.

However, binge-drinking and anxiety are closely linked. While there is a social concept of drinking to ‘unwind’ after a long day, these calming effects are only temporary. Alcohol changes the chemicals in your brain and body and can often lead to severe anxiety the next day, especially if you drank excessively.

Do not drink to manage social anxiety. A very common result merely is enduring more anxiety once the alcohol wears off.

Over time, binge drinking can lead to brain damage, liver damage, depression, obesity, and cardiovascular damage.

If you find it difficult to stop binge drinking, it may help speak with a counselor, either online or in person. Many online therapists offer a free consultation, in which they will honestly assess your current situation and advise you about whether you need further help or not.

Plenty of things can cause vomiting, but there are also many options to prevent vomiting in the future.

Vomiting is an unpleasant experience, especially when it’s accompanied by excessive nausea. Fortunately, there are extensive home remedies and professional remedies that can offer you some relief.

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