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Can Anxiety Make You Throw Up

How To Take Control Of Your Stress

Does Your Anxiety Make You Feel Like Throwing Up?! (Emetophobia: Learn how to get rid of it)!

The good news is that you can avoid health problems associated with chronic worry by learning how to manage your stress.

Dr. Borland suggests the following steps to help you cope with stress:

  • Exercise each day. Do some form of exercise each day, whether strength training, aerobic exercise or walking your dog.
  • Meditate and breathe deeply. Repeat a calming mantra or visualize a serene setting.
  • Eat healthy. Focus on a balanced diet. Also, limit your caffeine and sugar intake, which can key you up and contribute to anxiety and insomnia.
  • Stay in contact with people who support you. Get support from your spouse or significant other, parents, siblings and friends.
  • Take part in fun activities with family and friends. Smile, laugh and be as emotionally present as you can.
  • Seek calming, creative activities. Try painting or drawing, gardening or cooking.
  • Be grateful. Focus on areas of life for which you are appreciative. Pay attention to what makes you feel grateful.
  • Talk to your doctor and, if necessary, seek professional mental health treatment. Dont hesitate to reach out to your doctor, especially if you are coping with depression or anxiety.

Worry is a part of life for everyone, and this past year has been extra stressful for many. But by taking steps to proactively manage your stress, you can help make sure that your daily worries dont end up hurting your health.

Fear Of Vomiting Or Emetophobia

If you have a fear of vomiting, just reading the title of this article might make you a bit queasy. The mere mention of the “V word” might send you into a state of anxiety. If you can relate, I encourage you to press on despite your worry, so you can take the first steps to overcoming it.

If you suffer with this type of phobia , you are not only repulsed by the idea of vomiting, you fear it. And you probably have at least one of these fears, too:

  • Not being able to find a bathroom in time
  • Vomiting over and over and being unable to stop
  • Choking on vomit and suffering physically
  • Embarrassing yourself in front of others
  • Being admitted to a hospital

Many people say that the anticipation of vomiting is often worse than the act itself.

Can Anxiety Make You Throw Up

HomeCan Anxiety Make You Throw up?

When someone gets anxious part of his or her body called the sympathetic nervous system is activated. The degree of activation depends on the perceived level of threat. The greater the threat the stronger the activation. This activating response can be extremely fast and very dramatic. Many physical reactions take place but in terms of the stomach, digestion is not that important and the bodys resources are redirected. The stomach constricts and if the activation is strong enough the body attempts to expel undigested food. This can lead to vomiting. However, unless the anxiety is extraordinary it is unlikely. Almost always there is some stomach distress but involuntary throwing up rarely happens.

Read Also: What Can You Do For Anxiety

How Anxiety Causes Nausea

Stress and anxiety are often linked as the latter can be caused by stress and can create it. But there are also ways in which anxiety can lead to nausea independently of stress. They include the following:

  • Anxiety can make someone “hypersensitive” to the way their body feels. This means they give more attention to the body. When you become hypersensitive, a small amount of “normal” nausea that you otherwise could ignore can feel like severe nausea that is difficult to control.
  • Anxiety is a known trigger of and contributor to issues like motion sickness, so some people with anxiety tend to have worse nausea during car rides and similar movement.
  • Anxiety may change the bodys levels of neurotransmitters like serotonin. Serotonin also plays a role in the reactions of the gut. Thus, it is possible for changes in these neurotransmitters levels in the brain to trigger nausea signals in the gut.

Of course, anxiety itself also causes and is caused by stress, so all of the stress responses are similar to the responses of those that have frequent or chronic anxiety.

Treatments And Coping Methods

Emetophobia: When Kids Fear Throwing Up or Seeing Someone ...

In most cases, anxiety is not a cause for concern because it is part of the bodys natural response to stress, threat, or danger.

The Anxiety and Depression Association of America offer several tips for managing everyday stress and anxiety. These include:

  • Taking time to relax: Activities such as yoga, meditation, and listening to music can help a person reduce their stress levels.
  • Trying to maintain a positive attitude: People can practice replacing negative thoughts with positive ones.
  • Getting plenty of sleep: The human body needs additional rest during times of stress.
  • Exercising daily: Daily exercise releases chemicals called endorphins, which can relax a person and lift their mood. Exercise can also help by promoting sleep.
  • Limiting caffeine and alcohol intake: These can aggravate anxiety and may even trigger panic attacks in some people.
  • Talking to someone: A person may find it helpful to talk to a trusted friend or family member about their anxiety.

The ADAA recommend that people experiencing an episode of anxiety try taking slow, deep breaths in and out, as well as counting to ten slowly and repeating this as necessary.

Some people who experience anxiety find it beneficial to understand their specific triggers. Triggers are situations or events that can bring about episodes of anxiety.

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Can Stress Cause Vomiting

Your fight or flight response can easily be triggered by your anxieties. When this happens your body is helping you to prepare for dealing with crisis. It is actually the bodys natural response to stress and stressful situations, and when activated, can actually aid in your survival.

When youre experiencing stress or anxiety, a rush of hormones is released in your body, and messages are sent throughout your body from neurotransmitters in your brain. These messages tell your body to increase your breathing rate, to tense your muscles, to send more blood to your brain, and to get your heart to pump faster.

Stress and anxiety can effect almost all of the systems of the body including, the respiratory system, the nervous system, the endocrine system, the cardiovascular system, the reproductive system, and the musculoskeletal system. In addition, within the digestive system, stress and anxiety can cause nausea, vomiting, heartburn, acid reflux, gas, bloating, stomach ache, diarrhea, constipation, and bowel spasms.

Meanwhile, according to various studies, ten to twenty percent of Americans have either Irritable Bowel Syndrome or Chronic Upset Stomach. And feeling stressed or anxious can bring on symptoms such as nausea and/or vomiting.

Related Questions Answered On Yanswers

Is it possible to throw up from stress?
Q: My friend has been talking about how shes been throwing up from stress lately but me and my other friends are worried it may be something more i just want to know if you really can throw up from stress she talks about how shes up all night getting sick and idk im just worried about her a doctors opinion would be great
A: Itd be weird if stress didnt cause that. So yeah, my answer is yes, I believe stress can cause you to throw up.
When i made my self throw up there was blood in my vomit is that from putting stress in my stomach?
A: Maybe your throat was irritated enough to bleed

Read Also: What Does An Anxiety Attack Feel Like Physically

How Did I Get This Way

Vomit phobia can develop spontaneously or following a traumatic vomiting experience. Once it starts, your fear can escalate. Step by step, you avoid places and things you associate with vomiting, you become increasingly more hypervigilant, and the fear soon dominates your life. The more you avoid, the greater your fear becomes. Dietary habits usually grow strict, and anything unfamiliar or with the slightest possibility of causing sickness results in compulsive checking and avoidance.

People who suffer with this phobia often experience significant social and occupational impairment, going to great lengths to make sure they dont vomit . Kids refuse to go to school or visit a friends house, and adults miss work and stop eating at restaurants. Much of life is avoided all due to a fear of vomiting. This means missing out on much of life and a great deal of worrying and strategic planning all to avoid something uncomfortable that seldom happens. The uncertainty of not knowing when it will happen is what causes so much distress.

And because you dont know when it will happen, you are constantly on guard, rearranging your life to ward off any possibility of puking.

If this sounds like you, these protective behaviors may be familiar, too:

How To Cure Nausea Due To Anxiety

Handling Anxiety that Makes You Feel Sick to Your Stomach

In the case of nausea due to anxiety, the nausea itself isnt dangerous. As long as you have ruled out other health problems and your doctor or therapist has confirmed that anxiety is causing your nausea, it is helpful to know that your body is not in any serious danger. Instead, to control your nausea, you need to manage your anxiety. Chances are your body is experiencing a great deal of stress related to persistent anxiety.

Several strategies for fighting anxiety include the following:

These are all quick strategies for reducing anxiety nausea. However, fighting anxiety is a long-term issue. If you experience a great deal of anxiety at home, at work, at school, or in social situations, then you need to learn effective ways of controlling it. Once your anxiety is managed, the likelihood of nausea will decrease.


Nausea can be caused by multiple issues that may or may not be related to anxiety, including changes in neurotransmitter levels, stress to the gut, blurry eyes, and more. Anxiety can also make a person more sensitive to feelings of nausea, so mild nausea feels more intense. Walking, drinking water, and light eating can be helpful, but anxiety reduction will be the only way to stop anxiety-related nausea.

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Managing Stress Anxiety And Over

  • Breathe deep. Close your eyes and take a deep breath, then another. Let each breath out slowly. Repeat as needed.
  • Light exercise. Walking and stretching can soothe a stressed-out body or an over-excited mind.
  • Meditate. Focus on your breathing and whats happening around you right now.
  • Take a time out. Distract yourself with something you enjoy, like TV, gardening, playing with pets, or a visit with friends.
  • Visualize. Picture yourself facing and conquering fears. For example, see yourself succeeding in that meeting.
  • Get support. Call up a sympathetic friend or family member and talk.
  • Make a plan. Just thinking about how youll handle a problem can help you begin to feel in control.
  • Eat and drink right. Alcohol can make stress and anxiety worse. Overeating can pile guilt and nausea onto an already overwrought situation.
  • Rest up. Whether its stress, anxiety, or excitement taking your body on a roller-coaster ride, the unchangeable fact is you need to rest and recharge. So daydream. Take naps. And, always get a good nights sleep.

Sometimes you need a little more assistance to manage the stomachache, nausea, or other physical symptoms of stress, anxiety, and excitement. Heres a few expert tips that may help.


What To Do When Work Stress Makes You Sick

High-pressure jobs can create psychological stress that is severe enough to have physical effects, from chronic headaches to nausea to insomnia. Severe stress has even been known to cause strokes. If we find ourselves in the kind of job that is resulting in a hit to our health, we must take intentional steps to better our body and mind. First, try to identify the source of your stress. At the onset of your physical symptoms, write down whats happening to you and around you. Second, make sure youre getting enough exercise and mental downtime, voicing your concerns to others, and setting healthy boundaries. Finally, if none of these things seem to be working, consider finding a new job.

Alyson was 35 when she had a stroke.

The ambitious attorney awoke one morning unable to move, the left side of her body paralyzed. She was due in court later that day, so before calling for help, she reached for her phone and dialed her assistant.

The stroke was the match in the powder barrel. For days, Alyson had ignored the warning signs, including ringing in her ears, visual impairments, and exhaustion. Her doctors had trouble pinpointing the source of her stroke after all, the vast majority occur in those over 65 but they all offered their best guess: stress.

So if we find ourselves in the kind of job that is resulting in a hit to our health, we must take intentional steps to better our body and mind.

Recommended Reading: How To Cope With Relationship Anxiety

Why Do Some People Experience Nausea While Others Dont And Why Is Some Peoples Anxiety

While the basic structure and behaviour of each human body is mostly similar, no two people will react to stress and anxiety in the same way and that means the physical symptoms we experience are also different, Harper explains.

The way each of us deals with anxious situations depends on a number of factors, including the make-up of your personality and your coping mechanisms, she says. As we all react to anxiety in our own way, some people may experience nausea and other physical symptoms, like trouble sleeping, stomach ache or constipation and others may not.

Harper adds that some medical conditions, like irritable bowel syndrome, may make it more likely for a person to experience symptoms like nausea when theyre feeling anxious.

How Does Nausea Caused By Anxiety Feel

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Youve probably had nausea many other times in your life from causes other than anxiety. Stomach bugs, food poisoning, eating a lot of junk food over the holidays, and so on.

Anxiety-induced nausea can feel similar to those.

But it can also feel different, and that can make it scarier than standard nausea. To help you to identify your nausea as a symptom of your anxiety it might help if you learn how anxiety-induced nausea can feel.

If your anxiety causes nausea, you may:

  • feel like your stomach is cramping
  • feel like your stomach is churning
  • feel like your stomach is bloated
  • feel like youre about to throw up
  • feel like your stomach is full of trapped wind
  • feel like you have butterflies in your stomach
  • feel like you desperately need to use the bathroom
  • feel like moving makes the sickness worse

On top of these feelings, anxiety-induced nausea also has a few other characteristics that make it different from standard nausea:

  • it can appear quickly without warning
  • it can disappear quickly like nothing was ever wrong
  • it can get worse the more you focus on it
  • it can occur at the same time as dizziness
  • it often doesnt get better with standard nausea medicines

If a lot of these symptoms and feelings sound familiar, you can be pretty sure that what youve been experiencing is anxiety-induced nausea.

Now that youre aware of how this type of nausea can feel, take note of your symptoms whenever you feel nausea in the future.

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