Vomiting occurs when the contents of the stomach come out of the
mouth in a forceful manner. Nausea is a queasy sensation felt in the
stomach and is usually present prior to vomiting. An upset stomach
is the most common cause of vomiting. Often the cause is just
something that "does not agree with you" but may include: bad food
or food poisoning; alcohol; food allergies; certain medications
including chemotherapy; infection; migraine headaches; morning
sickness during pregnancy; motion sickness; digestive diseases; in
infants, a milk intolerance or immature digestive system; or forced
vomiting as in bulimia.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
To avoid dehydration:
• Take in as much fluid as possible without further upsetting the
• Wait an hour or so after vomiting before taking anything. Then
take small amounts of water, ginger ale, simple fruit juices, or
• If able to keep the fluid down without vomiting, increase the
amount slowly (every hour or two) and begin to work back to a full
• A good diet in between liquid and regular is the BRAT diet. This
diet is easy on the system and helps restore lost nutrients. It
consists of B=bananas, R=rice, A=applesauce, T=toast (dry)
WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT:
• Complications may include dehydration (not enough fluids in one's
system) due to excessive vomiting which can lead to other problems.
• In infants and the elderly, this could be a very serious problem.
• Prolonged vomiting can also cause abdominal pain.
CALL 1061 OR SEEK IMMEDIATE MEDICAL
If you vomit blood, have severe abdominal pain, are unable to
retain any fluids for 12 hours or more, have nausea for a long
period of time, or have signs of dehydration (increased thirst, low
urine output, sunken eyes, skin that is not elastic but sludge-like,
no tears when crying, and lethargy.