see also Travel Sickness, Vomiting in Infants, Abdominal Migraine (Cyclical Vomiting)
Bouts of nausea, with or without vomiting, which last less than 24 hours are often associated with Migraine (one-sided headache, visual disturbances), Gastroenteritis (diarrhoea), acute Gastritis (after fatty foods or bingeing on alcohol), Food Poisoning (after eating contaminated food), Labyrinthitis and Meniere's Disease (disturbed balance), Jaundice (whites of eyes turn yellow), Whooping Cough (repeated spasms of coughing), and urinary tract infections (pain or frequently passing water). If nausea, with or without vomiting, occurs frequently or lasts, on and off, for more than a day or two, the cause is more likely to be a drug, Hiatus Hernia (heartburn, worse bending or lying down), chronic Gastritis (especially if nausea follows alcohol), Cholecystitis (fever and pain under right ribs), Gallstones, or pyloric stenosis (stomach very distended, foul belching).
Nausea and vomiting can also be indicators of more serious conditions such as a Peptic Ulcer (especially if it bleeds or perforates), severe Gastric Erosion, Appendicitis, a brain injury, a subarachnoid or subdural brain haemorrhage, a brain tumour, acute Glaucoma, Meningitis, and cancer of the stomach (see Cancer), all of which require prompt medical attention.
If nausea and vomiting are accompanied by severe abdominal pain lasting for more than 1 hour, or if they follow a head injury, or if vomit is blood-stained or contains 'coffee grounds', contact Emergency Medical Services.
If, in addition to feeling nauseous and vomiting, person is suffering from sleepiness, Confusion, intolerance of light, and Headache made worse by bending forwards, consult your doctor if there is no improvement in 2 hours and give Belladonna 30c every 5 minutes until help arrives. If person is nauseous and vomiting, and has a severe pain in one eye and blurred vision, appropriate action is also to consult your doctor if there is no improvement in 2 hours. If there is recurrent vomiting without nausea, and a headache in the morning, consult your doctor if there is no improvement in 12 hours. If there is recurrent vomiting and constant pain in stomach, or frequent vomiting and weight loss of more than 0.5 kg (1 lb) per week, consult your doctor if there is no improvement in 48 hours.
Other causes of nausea and vomiting include intense emotion, radiation, food Allergy, deficiencies of zinc and Vitamin B6 (especially in pregnancy), and also of sodium, magnesium, and biotin, and sometimes and excess of Vitamin D, calcium, or lithium.
Specific remedies for use in 999 emergencies, to be taken every 5 minutes for up to 10 doses
- Vomiting and severe abdominal pain lasting for 1hour or more, pain not relieved by vomiting, burst ulcer or appendicitis suspected Aconite 30c
- Vomiting of dark red blood or 'coffee grounds', bleeding peptic ulcer suspected Phosphorus 30c
- Vomiting follows head injury Arnica 30c
Specific remedies to be taken 1/4 -hourly, or less frequently depending on severity, for up to 10 doses
- Vomiting occurs 2-3 hours after eating, with painful retching, tendency to wake around 4 am and not be able to get back to sleep for 2-3 hours, person feels 'hung over', especially after reckless eating or if he or she has a peptic ulcer Nux 30c
- Craving for cold water, which is vomited up as soon as it becomes warm in stomach, blood in vomit and burning pains in pit of stomach, suspected peptic ulcer Phosphorus 30c
- Vomiting after rich fatty food, yellow-green discharge from nose, person feels better in open air, but generally tearful Pulsatilla 30c
- Vomiting occurs very soon after meals, especially after very large meals, lack of hunger after vomiting, tongue white and furred, weighed-down sensation m stomach, person feels worse in hot stuffy rooms Antimonium 30c
Self-help: Repeated vomiting can be very dehydrating, so drink plenty of fluids (especially boiled cooled water), a little and often to begin with; avoiding solids for a day or two will also give your stomach a rest. If you smoke, try to stop. If you are taking prescription drugs of any kind, and suspect that they are having side effects, consult your medical doctor.