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Nausea, Motion & Morning Sickness

Causes
Tips
Remedies


Causes

Gastroenteritis, caused by a virus that has entered the digestive tract or contaminated food or water, causes inflammation, cramping, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Severe cases can lead to dehydration, so be sure to drink fluids and balance your electrolytes (take Pedialyte for young children and the elderly, and sports drinks for everybody else.

Do you have nausea and a new car? Well, that "sweet smell of success" could be the cause of your nausea, as the glues, paints, upholstery and plastics used in new car manufacturing produce VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds). The fumes emitted from these products can cause throat irritation, headaches, drowsiness, dizziness, as well as visual disorders and memory impairment. See our headache section for more information on VOCs.

Tips

  • Basic method to alleviate motion sickness: while in a moving vehicle, steady your head against the back of your seat; fix your eyes on the horizon; do not allow your head or eyes to roll around.
  • Eating a small protein-rich meal before being subjected to motion causes less hyperactivity in the stomach, according to a study done at Penn State University.
  • Acupuncture may be helpful in relieving nausea. The acupuncture point is on the inside of the forearm, two thumbs up from the inside of the wrist crease between the two tendons. Get between the tendons with your finger and apply pressure for a few minutes on each arm. This method is good for other forms of nausea, too, such as nausea caused by pregnancy and chemotherapy. If you have trouble using this method go to an acupuncturist for some instructions.

If you are having surgery and feel you will be nauseated afterward, ask for an acupuncturist to treat you immediately following the procedure. The pressure point is called P6. Electro-acupuncture (no needles) may be easier to administer in the operating room. This remedy will also reduce the pain.

Wearing an acupressure wristband following surgery lessens nausea from anesthesia and reduces vomiting. These bands are sold over the counter for motion sickness.

Remedies

Folk

Bananas Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep up blood sugar levels and avoid morning sickness.

B-vitamins Take a high-dose B-complex vitamin with at least 100 mg of B-6, morning and night, for both motion sickness and morning sickness.

Cloves Chew five whole cloves.

Cola syrup The age-old standby for nausea and upset stomach has been cola syrup. For adults take 1-2 tablespoons every 15 minutes until the symptoms subside (no more than six doses in a 24 hour period). For children it's 1-2 teaspoons. There is caffeine in cola syrup, so it is best not to take it before bedtime if you are affected by caffeine. Warning: Also, don't take cola syrup if you are a diabetic.

Ginger To help prevent motion sickness take two to four gingerroot capsules (500 mg each), 1/4 inch slice of fresh ginger or 1/2-1 teaspoon of powdered ginger in some juice three times daily, depending on the circumstances. Best results will probably occur when the gingerroot is taken an hour or two before departure on your trip, with one or more capsules every four hours while traveling; can be used as either a preventative or remedy. Ginger has also been found to significantly reduce post-operative vomiting for women who have undergone major gynecological surgery, and helps alleviate chemotherapy-induced nausea. If you use standardized extract, take 1,000 mg. This remedy has proved to be more effective than Dramamine. Another way to get ginger is to eat candied slices.

  • Ginger/honey Make a tea by mixing 1 teaspoon fresh ginger juice and 1 teaspoon honey in a cup of boiling water; drink as needed.

Ice Research at Penn State University suggests that applying a cold-pack to your forehead may alleviate the symptoms.

Lemon Suck on a lemon wedge.

Peppermint Put a small drop of peppermint essential oil under your nose. It will help stop your stomach from churning.

Red raspberry leaf tea helps relieve morning sickness.

Soda crackers. Eating some crackers will help relieve morning sickness. Remedy courtesy of Shantel Marie from Hawaii.

Water Morning sickness is a thirst signal of both the mother and the fetus. Be sure that you are drinking enough water. Normally, people should drink eight 8 oz. glasses of water a day. Consult your doctor to discuss the proper amount for you if you have morning sickness.

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