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UncategorizedNausea and Vomiting

Nausea and Vomiting

Vomiting is the forcing of the contents of the stomach up into the oesophagus and out of the mouth. It is one of the body’s more ostentatious methods of elimination. Nausea is the stomach-churning sensation that usually precedes retching or vomiting.

Symptoms

  • To feel nauseous or queasy is to have sense of unease or discomfort in the upper abdomen.
  • You feel like vomiting, although this may not occur.

What causes it?

Nausea is an unpleasant symptom of various conditions (see below).

Food poisoning

Food poisoning occurs when you have eaten contaminated food. Vomiting is nature’s way of promptly ridding the body of toxic pathogens before they are absorbed. The contaminant may be bacterial, viral, or the toxins made from these pathogens. Food poisoning can occur immediately after eating the contaminated food, or up to 12 hours afterwards. Symptoms usually resolve within 24 hours, but can continue for 3–4 days. Common pathogens include salmonella, E coli, enteritis and campylobacter.

What causes it?

  • Food poisoning is most often caused by poor hygiene practices such as not washing hands after going to the toilet.
- Poor food hygiene. cross-contamination from raw meat to vegetables; not washing vegetables; not allowing food to defrost at the correct temperature; undercooking food.
  • Travelling. Food poisoning is more frequent when travelling to countries with less stringent food-hygiene laws.

Other symptoms

  • Abdominal cramps.
  • Diarrhoea.
  • Fever.
  • Headaches.
  • Weakness.

What to do

Diet

  • Generally, you won’t be able to keep any food down, however, try to eat a little dry toast, white rice, banana or a cracker.
  • Dehydration is the greatest risk with food poisoning. Sip warm ginger tea with honey, peppermint tea with honey, ginger ale, lemonade, black tea with honey and/or diluted sports electrolyte replacement drinks.

Remedies

  • Symptoms should resolve within a day. The offending pathogen is better outside your body than within so best to allow nature to take her course and keep hydrated.
  • After the storm has passed, take a good quality probiotic to restore microbial harmony. Take for at a least a week.
  • The homoeopathic remedy arsenicum album can be useful in food poisoning.

Other

  • Avoid dodgy restaurants and food outlets.
  • Take a prophylactic probiotic before and during travel.
  • Soak a hand towel in cold water with about 5 drops of spearmint oil or a cup of cold spearmint tea. Wring out the cloth and place it on your upper abdomen. If you don’t have spearmint, use peppermint instead.
  • Place an ice pack (or unopened pack of frozen peas) on the back of your neck.
  • Press the acupuncture point He-Gu or ‘Joining of the Valleys’ which is situated at the vortex between the thumb and first finger. Dig deep into this spot with the opposite thumb and massage in a tight circle for about a minute. Then for another minute, massage the scalp deeply as a good hairdresser does when shampooing you.
  • Food poisoning can be very severe. If it continues more than 24 hours, seek medical help.

Chemotherapy

The drugs used for chemotherapy in cancer treatment commonly cause nausea and vomiting. Very often, anti-emetic – or anti-vomiting – drugs are given concurrently with the medication.

Symptoms

  • Lack of appetite.
  • Nausea and vomiting.

What to do

Diet

  • Even though you may not be hungry, try to eat small meals frequently, such as a boiled egg on a cracker, steamed chicken breast and a salad, or a few nuts. Each meal needs to contain a little protein, which has been shown to reduce the feelings of nausea during chemotherapy.
  • Avoid sugar.

Remedies

  • Ginger tablets have been shown to reduce nausea in addition to nausea medication.
  • Sip on warm ginger or peppermint tea.
  • The homoeopathic remedies nux vomica, arsenicum album or ipecacuanha can be helpful. They will not interact with your other medications.

Other

  • Speak to your doctor or cancer nurse if nausea is affecting you severely. An adjustment in dosage or an alternative medicine may be needed.
  • A spearmint or peppermint hand towel on your upper abdomen, an ice pack on the back of your neck or pressing the acupuncture point He-Gu (‘Joining of the Valleys’) can also be helpful (see above).
  • Marijuana is illegal in many states however, THC (found in marijuana), can be helpful in relieving nausea and pain. I’d really like to include this, have mentioned that is illegal

Morning Sickness

Morning sickness occurs during pregnancy. It usually reaches its peak by week 9, but for some women, the nausea may extend to week 20 or more. Unfortunately, it can occur at any time of the day. Take solace in the knowledge that morning sickness coincides with a lower rate of miscarriage.

Symptoms

  • Nausea at the smell of certain foods.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Nausea is often felt more at the beginning of the day.

What to do

Diet

  • Keeping blood-sugar levels steady is one of the most important factors in reducing morning sickness. Eat small meals frequently. Even before you get out of bed, eat something. A dry cracker or a piece of toast. Each meal should contain a little protein.
  • Avoid food and drink with strong smells.
  • Avoid sugar.
  • Keep your fluids up but avoid drinking more than a glass of fluid with meals.

Remedies

  • Vitamin B6 is excellent for reducing morning sickness. Take in combination with ginger.
  • Ginger, cinnamon, chamomile, peppermint, black horehound and chen pi can all be safely taken during pregnancy to reduce nausea.
  • Homoeopathic remedies that may help morning sickness include sepia and pulsatilla.

Other

  • Rest up.
  • Acupuncture and acupressure can be very helpful for reducing the symptoms of morning sickness.
  • A spearmint or peppermint hand towel on your upper abdomen, an ice pack on the back of your neck or pressing the acupuncture point He-Gu (‘Joining of the Valleys’) can also be helpful (see above).

Motion Sickness

Motion sickness can occur in boats, cars, trains, planes as well as the big dipper and crazy mouse.

What causes it?

Motion sickness is caused by mixed messages to the brain. Your sense of equilibrium is sensed via fluid in the inner ear and by sight. The brain takes in both messages and then judges one’s position in space. If, for example, you are looking at the horizon while sailing, your eyes are resting on a still point, while your body is lurching from the swell of the sea. Vomitsville. Just why the mixed message to the brain should involve the stomach at all is open to speculation. One theory is that the brain decides one of the senses is hallucinating due to a toxin and orders the stomach to eject the poisonous substance.

Symptoms

  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Sweating.
  • Hyperventilating.

What to do

Diet

  • If you are particularly prone to travel sickness, don’t eat before the journey, and if it is a short trip, avoid eating at all. Try small meals that are not fatty, spicy or strongly flavoured.
  • Avoid alcohol before and during travel.

Other

  • Feeling sick and the process of vomiting are intrinsically frightening. Vomiting can make even the strongest person feel vulnerable. A few drops of Rescue Remedy will take the edge off fearfulness.

Remedies

  • Sip sweetened ginger tea or suck on crystallised ginger.
  • The homoeopathic remedy ipecacuahna is good for motion sickness.

Other

  • Can you not walk there instead?
  • Open the window and grab some fresh air (not recommended on planes).
  • Sit where there is least movement in the craft. Over the wings in a plane, mid-ship on a boat.
  • Drive rather than be a passenger. If this is not possible, bags the front seat and keep your eyes on the road and scenery.
  • A spearmint or peppermint hand towel on your upper abdomen, an ice pack on the back of your neck or pressing the acupuncture point He-Gu (‘Joining of the Valleys’) can also be helpful (see above).
  • When going to a fairground, avoid the rotor. If you ignore this advice in addition to eating a pluto pup, you will garner no sympathy from this quarter.

Gall Stones

Rich foods such as creamy sauces or a roast dinner may trigger a gall-bladder attack, with nausea and vomiting a common symptom. If a stone is lodged in the bile duct, the pain is acute and surgery to remove the gall bladder is often indicated.

What causes it?

A stone lodged in the bile duct.

Symptoms

  • Upper abdominal pain.
  • Diarrhoea.
  • Jaundice.
  • Fever and chills. 
### What to do

Diet

  • Drink plenty of water. At least 2 litres daily. This is most important to keep the bile from becoming too concentrated.
  • First thing each morning, drink a cup of hot water with the juice of half a lemon squeezed in it. Good for liver; good for gall bladder; good for you.
  • Eat plenty of high-fibre foods including vegetables, legumes and wholegrains.
  • Avoid fatty food.

Remedies

  • Take a teaspoon of herbal bitters in some water before each meal.
  • St. Mary’s thistle, globe artichoke, turmeric, chelidonium, calendula, ginger and peppermint can all help the gall bladder and liver. Take a tincture or tablet of one or more of these herbs once or twice a day.

Other

  • To treat the painful abdominal symptoms, apply a heat pack to the area. A ginger or castor-oil compress will add to the soothing effect.
  • Acupuncture is an effective treatment for gall-bladder disease.
  • A spearmint or peppermint hand towel on your upper abdomen, an ice pack on the back of your neck or pressing the acupuncture point He-Gu (‘Joining of the Valleys’) can also be helpful (see above).

Other causes for Nausea

  • Helicobacter pylorus. Nausea is a common symptom of peptic ulcers and gastritis, and a symptom of the presence of helicobacter pylorus, the bacteria that is a major cause of these conditions
  • Low blood-sugar levels. If you feel nauseous, ask yourself when last you ate. If it was more than 4 hours ago, your blood-sugar levels may be low.
  • Migraines
  • Hangover.
  • Food allergies
  • Swallowing mucus from a cold or sinusitis
  • The presence of gallstones may cause nausea, particularly in response to a fatty meal
  • Anything that ticks off the liver. Overburdening the liver with too much fatty food or alcohol can often cause nausea. The remedies for this are similar to those recommended for gall bladder ??? gallstones
  • Stress affects everyone differently. Some people respond to stress by feeling nauseous
  • Overeating. Simply overfilling the confines of the stomach may make you vomit. The Romans, 2 000 years ago, had specially built vomitariums so that they could more conveniently empty their stomachs to keep on eating.
  • Annoying people – as in, ‘You make me sick.’
  • From an esoteric view, vomiting might be viewed as a resounding rejection of an idea or an experience.

Aromatherapy

This calming anti-nausea blend can be used as a dry inhalation and sniffed as needed. Simply sprinkle the drops onto a tissue and smell deeply. Alternatively, you can blend into 5 ml of sweet almond oil and gently rub on to the abdomen.

  • 1 drop of ginger oil
  • 1 drop of peppermint oil
  • 1 drop of cardamom oil
  • 2 drops of mandarin oil

At a glance

Diet

  • If your nausea is a passing phase, then it is best to eat nothing for a day or so, until you feel hungry.
  • Avoid fatty foods – they will only make matters worse. Keep to bland, non-smelly foods.
  • Eat a little food every 2–3 hours, whatever you can stomach.
  • Drink. Vomiting frequently can cause you to become dehydrated very quickly without realising it. Some rehydrating fluids to sip slowly include plain, room-temperature water as well as the old faithful flat lemonade or ginger ale, Chinese green tea, black tea, ginger or mint tea or soda water. Diluted sports drinks can also replace lost electrolytes.

Remedies

  • Ginger is an excellent herb for nausea for all reasons. Take as a tablet, tea, tincture, crystallised or in a syrup.
  • Homoeopathic remedies such as the following can work very quickly for nausea and are safe in pregnancy:
– nux vomica – nausea that is worse in the morning, irritability.
    • sepia – nausea that is worse for thinking about or smelling food.
    • pulsatilla – nausea worse for a stuffy room or fatty foods.
    • arsenicum album – vomiting and diarrhoea, food poisoning.
    • ipecacuanha – motion sickness.

Other

  • A spearmint or peppermint hand towel on your upper abdomen, an ice pack on the back of your neck or pressing the acupuncture point He-Gu (‘Joining of the Valleys’) can also be helpful (see above).
  • Feeling sick and the process of vomiting are intrinsically frightening. Vomiting can make even the strongest person feel vulnerable. A few drops of Rescue Remedy can take the edge off your fearfulness.
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