Nausea is an uneasiness of the stomach that often comes before vomiting. Vomiting is the forcible voluntary or involuntary emptying ("throwing up") of stomach contents through the mouth.
What Causes Nausea or Vomiting?
Nausea and vomiting are not diseases, but they are symptoms of many conditions such as:
- Motion sickness or seasickness
- Early stages of pregnancy (nausea occurs in approximately 50%-90% of all pregnancies; vomiting in 25%-55%)
- Medication-induced vomiting
- Intense pain
- Emotional stress (such as fear)
- Gallbladder disease
- Food poisoning
- Infections (such as the "stomach flu")
- A reaction to certain smells or odors
- Heart attack
- Concussion or brain injury
- Brain tumor
- Some forms of cancer
- Bulimia or other psychological illnesses
- Gastroparesis or slow stomach emptying (a condition that can be seen in people with diabetes)
- Ingestion of toxins or excessive amounts of alcohol
The causes of vomiting differ according to age. For children, it is common 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.
The timing of the nausea or vomiting can indicate the cause. When appearing shortly after a meal, nausea or vomiting may be caused by food poisoning, gastritis (inflammation of the stomach lining), an ulcer, or bulimia. Nausea or vomiting one to eight hours after a meal may also indicate food poisoning. However, certain food- borne bacteria, such as salmonella, can take longer to produce symptoms.
When should you seek care at Accelerated Urgent Care?
- Repetitive nausea with vomiting
- Unable to hold down fluids
- Feeling like passing out
- Associated chest pain
- Any other symptoms listed above in the “What causes Nausea and Vomiting” section
Accelerated Urgent Care will treat your nausea, vomiting, and other symptoms such as dehydration and investigate the underlying cause of your symptoms. You may or not get an injection to stop vomiting or even receive fluids through an IV to feel better.
Other tests may be performed to determine the cause of your nausea and vomiting.