Vomiting, or throwing up, can be an extremely uncomfortable experience. Generally speaking, throwing up is a normal response to harmful substances in the gut. It is a helpful and natural response in the body. However, the downside is that it can leave you feeling weak and tired. If you’re experiencing persistent vomiting, it can be a sign of something more serious.
It is important to know that vomiting is a symptom and not a disease or condition. Rather, is an indication that there is an underlying problem that should be addressed. Vomiting can be either acute (an isolated incident) or chronic (continuous and recurring).
In most cases, vomiting will clear up on its own. It is rarely considered a life-threatening problem. However, if it persists for more than 2 days, it is best to visit Urgent Care and contact your doctor.
Vomiting Causes, Side Effects, and Treatment
Several illnesses can cause either vomiting or diarrhea. These symptoms can also occur if an individual abuses substances such as marijuana, alcohol, or other drugs.
Vomiting is defined as a forceful discharge of stomach contents through the mouth, with several potential causes.
Causes of Vomiting
- Excessive consumption of alcohol
- Excessive marijuana use
- Prescription medications
- Motion sickness
- Food poisoning (Bacillus cereus and Staphylococcus aureus)
- Infections (both bacterial and viral)
- Headaches (such as migraines)
- Pregnancy-related (morning sickness)
- Crohn’s disease
Side Effects of Excess Vomiting
It’s important to monitor your side effects if you’re experiencing excess vomiting. Those experiencing persistent vomiting may experience the following:
- Tooth decay
- A tear in the esophagus
- Abdominal pain
Vomiting and Diarrhea: Causes, Side Effects, and Treatment
Similar to throwing up, diarrhea is usually a symptom of another underlying issue. Diarrhea is known as loose, watery stool discharged through the anus.
If you’re experiencing vomiting and diarrhea in tandem, there are some conditions to be on the lookout for.
Causes of Vomiting and Diarrhea
- A virus or bacterial infection
- Trouble digesting certain foods (food intolerance)
- Food allergies like celiac disease or gluten allergy
- Reaction to medications
- Intestinal disease or inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Reaction to surgery on the stomach or gallbladder
- Metabolic conditions and thyroid problems
- Radiation treatments
Side Effects of Diarrhea and Vomiting
Patients may experience the following side effects of diarrhea and vomiting:
- Stomach pain
- Belly or abdominal cramps
- Swelling (bloating)
- Upset stomach (nausea)
- Bloody stools
- Leaking stool or uncontrollable bowel movements
- Fast heart rate
- Not urinating as often
- Feeling thirsty
- Feeling lightheaded (like you may pass out)
Treatments for Vomiting and Diarrhea:
While the experience of vomiting and diarrhea may be drastically different, the treatments are largely the same.
- Refrain from drinking alcohol, fruit juice, caffeine, or fizzy drinks
- Avoid dairy
- Drink water to avoid dehydration
- Use the BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast)
- Apple sauce
- Lots of rest
- Wash your hands with soap and water regularly
Blood in Vomit: Is This Serious?
Blood in vomit, also known as Hematemesis, is a sign of internal bleeding in your digestive tract. Specifically, it means you are bleeding from the esophagus, stomach, or small intestine. The color may be bright red, or potentially darker, with a similar appearance to coffee grounds. If the blood is bright, it means there is an active bleed.
This is a sign that the issue may be more urgent. If the blood is darker, it means it’s an older bleed that may have stopped. While blood in vomit may not always be serious, it certainly isn’t normal. There may be trace amounts of blood caused by the intensity and trauma of vomiting. However, it is important to contact your doctor and seek medical assistance with any signs of blood.
Causes of Hematemesis:
- Bleeding ulcers
- Acute inflammation
- Enlarged blood vessels that rupture
- Chronic pancreatitis
BASS Urgent Care is Here to Help
If you are experiencing persistent vomiting or diarrhea that has lasted for more than two days, go to BASS Urgent Care today. We have qualified doctors and nurses that can help.