28 thoughts on “How Can I Treat Anxiety-Related Nausea?

  • June 13, 2013 at 9:03 pm

    The anxiety/nausea are the symptoms not the cause, they are the effect of having the fears you have stated namely emetophobic and agoraphobic.
    Simply remove the fears and the symptoms will go.
    I would ask when did you decide to be emetophobic and agoraphobic?
    There are simple 100% effective ways of removing a phobia. After all a phobia is a learnt habit, not something you were born with consequently if you learnt how do do it, you can un-learn it.
    How much happier would you be and all those around you without these phobias that effect your Life?
    Cure the problem and stop dealing with the symptoms.

    Reply
    • June 13, 2013 at 11:27 pm

      I definitely understand your argument, but that wouldn’t explain why feeling sick to my stomach — from something organic, like a hangover or a stomach bug — gives me such high anxiety that it often leads to panic. “Simply remove the fears” is easier said than done.

      I do NOT believe that emetophobia and agoraphobia can be called “decisions”. That sort of language washes away the severity and life-disrupting power that each phobia holds. Did I want these phobias? No, but they crept up on me as I was battling ever-increasing anxiety levels. That’s like asking me when I decided to develop hay fever or migraines. Frankly, I think it’s insensitive to call these phobias a “decision”.

      There aren’t any 100% effective ways of removing a phobia. If you’re trying to hawk a cure, you may want to consider a good re-write of your marketing copy. I don’t mean to offend, but it’s language like this — “100% effective” and “cure the problem” — that irritate me. It flashes false hope to people who are truly suffering, and doesn’t acknowledge the fact that true recovery, if such a thing exists, take time, effort, and energy.

      Reply
      • June 14, 2013 at 6:43 am

        I am sorry you feel offended by my words and feel that the severity of your phobias has been minimised.

        I appreciate you do not like me asking “when did you decide…” but as you said these phobias crept up on you and at the moment a decision was made to their importance. This moment does not lessen the importance it acknowledges the time.

        You may be curious to discover that there are simple effective ways to remove phobias and I amongst many other people like R Bandler, A Robbins, T H Eker, T James I could keep going, would all guarantee that they could remove a phobia.

        I was wondering if you had considered that even eating something organic can be a trigger to the nausea, anxiety and phobia.

        Again I respect that you are very angry at my belief that phobia removal is 100% possible as you stated your problems are so severe that” true recovery, if such a thing exists, take time, effort, and energy.” and that what I have said is too simple, however change can sometimes come more easily than you first imagine.

        Am I trying to use this post to “hawk a cure”? – No – It was my intention to give you the power of knowledge of other proven options, as you were obviously suffering. May I engage you in the possibility that there are in fact “cures” for phobias that is the removal of the phobia and if this is what you really want a bit of time researching what I am saying may well change you.

        Had I wanted to make a sales pitch, my wording would have been very different. It was worded this way for a good reason.

        When you know something you know, so now you know there are other solutions. Just imagine yourself free of these problems. All the best.

        Reply
    • August 13, 2014 at 1:47 pm

      You know, why not offer some actual solutions here rather than telling people (who have most likely been suffering for years) that there is some miracle cure. Why not point us to some websites or articles that we can read about this phobia therapy that exists. One problem I can already see is that therapy and counseling are expensive. My Psychologists rate is $110 an hour! If I could afford to go once a week I would, but I can’t so I settle on going whenever I can afford it.

      Now on the other hand, Summer has provided some ideas and products that can help you in a pinch. Yes, they only treat the symptoms but they can help you if you are in misery. I have no doubt that all people who suffer from anxiety WANT to get better, it just is easier for some than others. I personally, after a recent episode, am determined to beat it. With a combination of therapy, self therapy, drugs and some of the suggestions made here by Summer. Let’s be positive shall we!

      Reply
  • June 13, 2013 at 11:08 pm

    Hi there,
    I’m 17 years old. And, I’ve had bad anxiety for most of my life. However, it became severe sometime last summer. It makes enjoying my life beyond difficult. I have missed out on so many opportunities because of my anxiety. I believe I’m also, I forget the word, the fear of puking. I get so terrified that I’m going to vomit in front of anyone. I get the stomach nausea way too often. I’m so glad I found this post, though! I’m definitely going to tryout some of these techniques.

    Reply
    • June 13, 2013 at 11:34 pm

      Emetophobic. πŸ™‚ You’re totally not alone. It’s a very common phobia! Good luck with the techniques. πŸ™‚ Don’t forget that if your nausea is based in anxiety, you might also benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy that teaches you to accept your bodily sensations as normal and not harmful.

      Reply
  • June 14, 2013 at 12:04 am

    I have suffered from anxiety related nausea for a large period of my life, certainly since my teen years, and it can really wear you down, and increase your anxiety and depression and panic symptoms. I didn’t think there was anything you could do to control it as I was not informed by doctors or medical professionals for a lot of years. The only thing I have found to help as prescribed by a doctor is a combination of Lansoprazole (a proton pump inhibitor (PPI))http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lansoprazole OR ranitidine (a histamine H2-receptor antagonist) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ranitidine AND aN SSRI anti depressant http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Selective_serotonin_reuptake_inhibitor both taken over a long term basis to control the symptoms. It really is worth addressing the issues by seeking the advice of a medical professional as I have found it can have a majorly crippling effect on your life.

    Reply
    • June 14, 2013 at 12:06 am

      Really? Zantac? (That’s ranitidine, for anyone reading who doesn’t know.) I’m honestly surprised. Is your nausea caused by acid reflux? I’ve been told in the past that I do have acid reflux, but it doesn’t bother me nearly as much now as it used to.

      Reply
  • June 16, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    Would echo peppermint as helpful. I’m in the UK and polo mints (hard peppermint sweets) seem to provide relief within 5-10minutes for me. Cheap and easy to get hold of in most shops, Prescribed anti-nausea medication would take over an hour to start having an effect but weren’t as effective as the mints for me.

    Reply
  • June 19, 2013 at 9:04 am

    BInspired2 is right – to a point. All these anti emetic meds are treating symptoms and not the cause. Unfortunately, therapy-speak “when did you decide to be phobic” etc, gives the wrong impression. As though you really wanted these symptoms! (Strangely, psychotherapists learn that many people like to hang on to their symptoms for various reasons, hence this expression). Similarly ‘100% effective’ is dangerous as it can be perceived as 100% guaranteed. Which isn’t so. There are however ways to unlearn all these phobias. A phobia is learnt behaviour caused by thought patterns which cause emotional symptoms leading to physical symptoms. I’ve actually seen these things from both sides having been a sufferer and now a hypnotherapist (having been cured using hypnotherapy). A good hypnotherapist and CBT practitioner should be able to help you with your generalised anxiety, and once you start to break the cycle you stop fearing the fear and the whole negative pattern unravels. Would love to hear if you take the plunge with this and how it goes for you.

    Reply
  • June 19, 2013 at 4:19 pm

    I must say that I had all these symptoms for several years before they affected me psychologically. They just eventually wore me down and I didn’t really know what they were. Eventually I sought therapy but it was not very helpful. The only thing that worked was Celexa. I waited too long to try an SSRI but I’m not even sure they existed when I started having these symptoms decades ago.

    It is hard for me to understand how SSRI’s don’t help this blogger but I suppose that the organic origins for our anxiety disorders are different and not treatable in the same way. I know for that for me this is not a psychological problem alone but became one eventually after years of suffering.

    I will once in a while have all the symptoms of a panic attack but without any panic. I can lie down and breath properly until the cows come home and it won’t make the symptoms go away. It’s like I’m a car with a stuck accelerator. I have to take an Ativan to make it stop. I can then fall asleep but will wake again in a couple hours and have to take another. Thankfully this happens only once every few years and I am used to it so it doesn’t frighten me. It feels uncomfortable as hell but I survive.

    Reply
  • August 23, 2013 at 4:27 am

    Summer, I am not sure if you will see this comment but I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate this article. I have been dealing with emetophobia since I became sick in a public setting nearly twelve years ago, and I am somewhat relieved to know there are folks facing the same issue.

    The suggestion to create an ‘Emergency Nausea Kit’ has been a valuable tool to me as I attempt to overcome other social phobias that developed as a result of my emetophobia.

    I wish you the best of luck in your continued battle against anxiety, and I sincerely thank you for your story and suggestions.

    Reply
    • August 23, 2013 at 11:31 am

      Thanks Erik. That means a lot to me! In an ideal world, yes, we “ought” to be working toward functioning out in the world without our “safe” items. But I sincerely think that functioning WITH safe items > not functioning at all.

      Best of luck!

      Reply
  • May 27, 2014 at 7:39 pm

    Summer!!! I can’t believe I didn’t google this years ago, because your article described me perfectly!!! In 2010 two major events happend to me. 1) I started traveling A LOT for work. I would fly across the country (USA) every other week and I would stay anywhere from 1-3 weeks. My scheule was always changing and I never knew which coast I was on when I woke up in the mornings. 2) My husband (boyfriend at the time) and I went to Mexico for New Years and both of us got really really sick (thanks Montezuma’s revenge!!!). I had never seen my husband projectile vometing before and I think it seriously traumatized me. So now whenever I fly or if I’m the passenger in a car, I get nauseous! I usually at night, after I eat, I get cold sweats, have very liquidy bowl movements and I have to urinate a lot! I went to the doctor several times over the course of the year and even had an endocope shoved down my throat to see if I had an ulcer. But medically there was nothing wrong with me. I think now I will try to attack this from a mental side and see if I can conqure my anxiety, because I am so tired of feeling sick when anything fun happens in my life! I am going on a cruise in a few months and just thinking about it makes me sick to my stomach. But I have told myself that if I can make it through that trip (it’s only 3 days), that I will conqur one of my fears, and maybe won’t feel sick as often. Wish me luck!

    Reply
  • August 13, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    This was great! Surprisingly, there is so little information about the connection with anxiety, panic attacks and nausea. Everyone always seems to think they are having a heart attack while people like you (and me) get nausea! This has always been my staple symptom of anxiety since I was a kid. I’ve read books on panic where they devote entire chapters to “heart attack” symptoms and “sweaty palms” but no mention of nausea. Thank you so much for sharing this! I will be taking a Dramamine when I get on a boat tomorrow! πŸ™‚

    Reply
  • August 19, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    Anxiety-based nausea started from a young age for me. Now it’s at the stage where any major change in my life has me physically throwing up and then out of commission (to recuperate) for days. I still live at home with my parents and have never moved house… (I’m 20…) So leaving for overnight stays (or either of my parents not being in the house overnight) triggers it big time. I think somewhere down the line I’ve learnt to associate that being away from home/familiarity = being sick… now I dread ever having to leave the house to stay away from it for any longer than a few hours.

    The reason I found this article in the first place is because I’m due to go on a trip with friends which I’ve been really excited about up until now… it’s fast approaching. And I know for sure that the first night will be horrible for me. I’ll most likely end up crying and there’s a 99.9% chance I’ll vomit… I’m absolutely terrified… so far, I’ve found no way of stopping the attack once it comes. It’s always so sudden, too. Throughout the day I’ll be fine, but as night draws in it’s like a rock drops in my stomach and then I have to throw up. I feel helpless against it and all I have to protect me from that inevitability are self-learnt calming techniques and a cocktail of over-the-counter remedies that may or may not work. Right now, I’m closer to backing out of the trip altogether as opposed to putting myself through the terror of having to be sick.

    I just don’t want my anxiety to continue ruining my life like this though… I can’t do normal things or look forward to holidays without the looming fear of throwing up casting a huge shadow over all of it.

    Thank you for your suggestions though… I really plan to give all of them a try… Something really has to work or I don’t know what I’ll do πŸ™

    Reply
    • August 21, 2014 at 10:46 am

      Lillie, don’t lose hope! I go through this same thing in my life. When I am outside my daily “routine” things get difficult. Have you tried taking any different medications? Lexapro helped me out A LOT. You still have episodes on occasion, but for the most part it makes you able to function.

      Also, a technique I have been trying that seems to be working is simply facing my fears. It’s extremely difficult at first but with practice it really starts to help. When I fear my anxiety creeping in I stop what I am doing and literally talk to the panic in my head as if it were a person. I tell it to give me it’s best shot and that I’m ready for it. And 9 times out of 10 I start feeling better. It takes practice, and a bit of bravery, but it helps.

      I know it’s hard but you can do it! Go on that trip! Even if it means discomfort, it will be a milestone if you can make it! Good luck πŸ™‚

      Reply
  • October 21, 2014 at 3:13 pm

    Oh my gosh!! I have found you all! I seriously wish I could kiss all of you.

    About six months ago my body apparently decided to hate me and I started waking up around 4 am with repetitious thoughts, heart pounding, and vomiting. At first I thought they would be hangovers (even though I wouldn’t have over-indulged) but then they would happen on days I hadn’t even had any alcohol! I didn’t think it was anxiety because there was no chest-tightness or inability to breathe. I’ve concluded that it must be anxiety.. and now I have a university conference scheduled for Thursday-Sunday where I will be away from my home and my husband and I honestly feel like there’s no way I will be able to go.

    I’ve always been such a normal person and I do not understand why this is happening to me! The only thing I can think of is that I’m in graduate school and got married this year.. but why would that manifest into not being able to travel?

    I’m prescribed to Xanax but it makes me so sleepy I hate taking it. I also will not take permanent anti-anxiety meds because I have had a bad reaction to about three “daily” anti-anxiety meds.

    When did your symptoms start? Have you had therapy and was it beneficial? What do you tell people when they ask why you’re freaking out? I’m so embarrassed at myself.

    Reply
  • May 13, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Hi,
    Good Post!!Past one year I was suffered from the anxiety disorder…..At that time I took the xanax drug…regularly 1.5 year…Now,comopletly cured fronm the anxiety disorder…..

    Reply
  • May 27, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    I have no clue if you still keep up with the comments on this, but I’m glad I stumbled across this. I was literally just googling “Will dramamine help my anxiety” because I’m desperate. I was agorophobic (I missed an entire half of my senior year in highschool but ended up graduating because I made up the work and got really good grades) and didn’t have a job after graduating until after I got married. My husband was really my saving grace in getting me out of the house. It’s been 12 years but I still suffer from general “not wanting to go” places. By dumb luck, I ended up with a work at home job recently, and while I’m so happy I don’t have to go out for work, I feel like I’m regressing a little bit. I have to make myself go places so I don’t fall back into old habits. My biggest problem is nausea. I hate throwing up and I hate seeing or even hearing someone else throw up. I don’t even like to have someone MENTION throwing up to me. My main anxiety symtom is always nausea. It’s the worst thing ever.

    Reply
    • June 26, 2015 at 3:41 pm

      I have no idea if anyone reads this blog entry anymore, but i’m glad I stumbled upon it. I too suffer from nausea and anxiety, and I too, take anti-nausea (motion sickness) medication to help alleviate those symptoms. My husband sometimes expresses concern about the Dramamine, but i’ve spoken to my doctor about it in the past, and they have assured me it is okay for me to use it on an as-needed basis – but obviously each person should check with their doctor for individual opinions. I hope that I will one day be in control again and the nausea no longer dictating how I do things, but until then, I just want you to know, you’re not alone.

      Reply
  • October 9, 2016 at 5:22 am

    I am only 11. I suffer from the same thing that sh does. I am afraid of anything puke, saliva and food related. When I feel anxious, I feel sick, when I feel sick I sweat, when I sweat I collapse and when I collapse I cry. I know how hard it is to cope with anxiety sickness and being only 11 I can’t take certain tablets medicines or sweets. I am still waiting for CAMS to get in contact with me and I am hoping counselling will help. Throughout my life, I have always held everything in and been really quiet but I ding the best thing to do when feeling anxious or sick is to let it out( not the puke) the words. Tell someone how you feel. This really helped and I hope that you frel better soon X

    Reply
  • December 16, 2016 at 12:22 am

    Finally someone who understands what I’m going through. My parents were abusive freaks and my school life was hell. As I progressed to adolescence, instead of improving in physique and mentality, I became weaker as did my immune system. My intelligence declined due to prolonged stress and my anxiety increased dramatically. So many days in high school I felt nauseous and couldn’t concentrate.

    I had severe emetophobia so my body eventually adapted to severe nausea by eventually pooping my contents out. Due to this, I often had an upset stomach after a period of nausea.

    Reply
  • March 8, 2017 at 5:13 am

    Stomach ache is a very uncomfortable and painful feeling. There are lots of reasons behind getting this disease and i must tell you that this is very nice piece of information. If anyone wants to know about the reason behind you suffering from frequent stomach pain, you can get an idea after reading this article. You must be thinking that there are already lots of medicines for stomach pain then why I am supporting the writer of this article. Well, you will get all your answers if you read this article.

    Reply
  • April 24, 2017 at 12:42 pm

    Almost in tears reading this. I would never wish this on anyone but knowing I’m not alone is so comforting. Thank you for sharing your story. Ordering peppermint & lemon oil now! Stay strong, we are in this together!

    Reply
  • September 19, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    I’m glad i found this today i dont know how i didnt stumble upon it sooner. I’ve been suffering with anxiety since i was 13. Its was triggered at 12 long story. And it would only happen 3 time a year for a specific and similar event. Then it started spreading out happening more and more often until it began happening when anything got me a little stressed. It really is a big weight on me because whenever i make new friends they will invite me to parties and i always feel the nausea creep up and i immediately have go tell them that i have already made plans. There’s only so many times a can say that before they begin to feel like i just don’t want to go. But its not that its just ive developed the fear of throwing up and so my anxiety always makes me throw up. Thats the worst part. That i do in fact throw up. I just feel so overwhelmed most of the time. I just started a my first job and the first day i threw up 2 times before getting there. I was fine the rest of the day but working with food just might make it worse sometimes. Also might i add that I get anxiety around guys (part of the trigger) so if there are any around i am a mess and i have to rush out to the bathroom and let it all out. It feels like im always running away scared of perfectlt normal things and i cant live life how i wish to. Sorry that this is so long but i just needed to let it out and whi knkws maybe it will help someone else know that they arent alone I always find comfort in sharing the same pain with someone because they understand me when no one else ive ever met can. Also sometime i feel like im a burden to my parents and siblings because of this since when I’m feeling sick I tend to get irritable and well it just ruins things. I know they love me but i just wish i wasnt the cause for many trips that were ruined or not as great because i spent a lot of time throwing up. Also the nausea stops me from eating especially in the mornings but if I dont have anything in my stomach its just bile/stomach acid and it burns. So i usually eat a pear and some ginger tea or grapes because it its sweet (i know it sounds weird but that way you arent left with such a weird gross taste and burning feeling) any way thanks for your post and i enjoyed reading most comments of others and what helps you guys

    Reply
  • October 16, 2018 at 10:53 pm

    Hi I am 40 years old and never have had anxiety in my life until about 6 months ago I started feeling nauseous all the time and it got so bad I made several trips to the ER, saw several specialists and had a million tests including MRIs, CT scans , Endoscopy and more only to be told I’m fine!! Healthy!!!! Ok then why nauseous every single day? Why am I wanting to stay in bed all day because I’m sick? Finally I broke Down and was so depressed about being nauseous I wanted to die and went to the ER once again but this time they told me I was suffering from Anxiety and stress.. I am since on Xanax and Buspar but I have tried 3 other meds that I hated!! The nausea is better but not completely gone!! The Xanax has beeen the best but the Buspar helps with nausea and anxiety but makes me feel weird! I’m going back to the Dr tomorrow so we will see… I also take Zofran and Dramamine daily

    Reply
  • February 15, 2019 at 7:55 pm

    This post hit the nail on the head for me. Nausea is probably the worst and most dreaded symptom of my anxiety–well maybe diarrhea is first lol. But it is comforting to know that other people understand. I haven’t found anything that will help with it so I am going to try the dramamine and see how that goes. I have had fairly severe travel anxiety for almost 30 years. I have missed out on a lot of things over the years. I am supposed to leave tomorrow to see all my kids and grandkids and I am struggling and it’s soooo frustrating that something so fun and exciting is terrifying to me. My head gets so overwhelmed with thoughts and emotions–and then the physical symptoms from all my overthinking set in–it makes me just want to shut down. I know all the rational reasons why I don’t need to feel the way I do and that makes it a hundred times worse because no matter how much I pump myself up with positive self-talk and Xanax and whatever else, at the end of the day I feel too damaged to end the cycle. I know I am sounding so defeatist right now….I am so tired of fighting with my brain that it just seems easier to lay down and give up.

    Reply
 

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