You may feel like your breakfast is coming back up to say hello the next morning after dealing with something that raises your anxiety — such as a tense work meeting, a quarrel with a partner, or keeping your cat from tumbling out of your third-floor window.
Nausea is a typical side effect of anxiety, but why would worrying make you want to puke?
Why does nausea happen with anxiety?
There are two types of nausea: central and peripheral.
Central nausea is caused by something going on in your brain, like a problem with your inner ear or vestibular system (which controls your sense of balance), migraines, or labyrinthitis (inflammation of the inner ear).
Peripheral nausea is caused by things outside of your brain, like food poisoning, pregnancy, and motion sickness.
Anxiety can cause both types.
For central nausea, anxiety affects the part of your brain that controls vomiting. This area is called the chemoreceptor trigger zone (CTZ).
The CTZ is like a control panel for all things queasy — it gets information from your inner ear and stomach and sends signals to your brain when it’s time to hurl.
Anxiety can also cause peripheral nausea. This is because when you’re stressed, your body goes into “fight-or-flight” mode. This is the body’s natural way of preparing to protect itself from danger.
The fight-or-flight response causes physical changes, like an increase in your heart rate and blood pressure, as well as releasing stress hormones like cortisol.
For some people, anxiety can also cause an increase in stomach acid production. This can lead to indigestion, which can cause nausea.
Anxiety can also cause muscle tension, which can make you feel nauseated. When you’re tense, you may also hold your breath or take shallow breaths.
This can cause carbon dioxide to build up in your blood, which can lead to feelings of nausea.
Read also: How To Overcome Social Anxiety
How do I know if my nausea is from anxiety?
If you’re not sure whether your nausea is caused by anxiety or another health condition, there are a few things you can look for:
- Do you feel nauseous when you’re not eating?
- Do you feel better after vomiting?
- Do you have other symptoms of anxiety, like a racing heart or sweating?
- Do you feel better after taking medication for nausea?
If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, it’s likely that your nausea is due to anxiety.
Read also: Why Does One Person Cause Me Anxiety
How do you get rid of nausea from anxiety?
There are a few things you can do to ease nausea caused by anxiety:
Take deep, slow breaths.
When you feel anxious, your body responds by increasing your heart rate and breathing faster in an effort to supply more oxygen to your muscles. This can sometimes lead to feeling lightheaded or dizzy, as well as causing nausea.
One way to help reduce these symptoms is to take deep, slow breaths.
This helps to slow down your heart rate and allows your body to take in more oxygen. Deep breathing also has the added benefit of helping to focus your thoughts and clear your mind.
If you find yourself feeling anxious or nauseous, try taking a few deep, slow breaths and see if it helps to reduce these symptoms.
Try relaxation techniques like yoga or meditation.
Yoga and meditation are two popular relaxation techniques that can help to reduce anxiety and alleviate nausea. Both practices involve focusing on the breath and slowing down the racing thoughts that can trigger anxiety.
Yoga also involves physical movement, which can help to release tension from the body.
For some people, yoga or meditation may be helpful in reducing anxiety on their own.
Others may find it helpful to use these techniques in conjunction with other treatments, such as therapy or medication.
If you are experiencing nausea from anxiety, talk to your doctor about whether yoga or meditation may be right for you.
Drink clear or ice-cold drinks.
For many people, drinking clear or ice-cold drinks can help to ease nausea. This is because cold liquids help to settle the stomach and relieve nausea.
Additionally, sipping on drinks slowly can also help to prevent nausea from becoming worse. If you are feeling nauseous from anxiety, try drinking a cold glass of water or eating some ice chips.
You may also want to avoid drinking caffeinated beverages, as they can aggravate nausea.
Eat light and bland foods.
When you’re feeling nauseous, the last thing you want to do is eat. But in order to calm your stomach, it’s important to consume small amounts of bland foods.
Think plain toast or crackers, clear broth, or plain rice.
Avoid anything greasy, spicy, or acidic, as these can make nausea worse.
It’s also important to stay hydrated by sipping on clear fluids like water or ginger ale. If drinking makes you feel queasy, try sucking on ice chips or popsicles instead.
By following these simple tips, you can help ease nausea and get back to feeling yourself again.
Sit up and avoid crunching your stomach.
To get rid of nausea from anxiety, sit up and avoid crunching your stomach. This will help to ease the feeling of nausea and prevent it from getting worse.
You may also want to drink a glass of water or eat a small snack to settle your stomach. If the feeling of nausea persists, see your doctor to rule out any other possible causes.
Move slowly and carefully.
When you feel nauseous, it is important to move slowly and carefully. Sudden movements can make nausea worse, so it is best to get up slowly and avoid any jarring motions.
It is also important to drink plenty of fluids and avoid any fatty or fried foods. However, if you are feeling very nauseous, it is best to lie down in a dark and quiet room until the feeling passes.
If nausea persists for more than a few days, or if you are also experiencing vomiting or dizziness, it is important to see a doctor as these could be signs of a more serious condition.
Read also: Why Do I Feel Broken
Anxiety can cause a variety of symptoms, including nausea. If you are feeling nauseous from anxiety, there are several things you can do to ease the symptom.
Try drinking clear or ice-cold fluids, eating light and bland foods, and avoiding fatty or fried foods. You may also want to sit up and avoid crunching your stomach.
If the feeling of nausea persists, see your doctor to rule out any other possible causes.
Anxiety is a normal emotion that everyone experiences at some point in their life. However, for some people, anxiety can become a chronic condition that interferes with everyday life.
If you are struggling with anxiety, it is important to seek professional help. A therapist can help you to understand and manage your anxiety in a healthy way.