Vomiting is the forcible voluntary or involuntary emptying of stomach contents through the mouth or, less frequently, the nose. It is also known scientifically as emesis and colloquially as throwing up, retching, heaving, hurling, puking, tossing, or being sick. But why do People vomit?
Vomiting is caused by a complex chain of chain-link reactions in your body that connect to a “vomit center” in your brain. In cases of suspected poisoning, the lower digestive system shuts down and causes the stomach to convulse to bring everything back up.
What Causes People to Vomit?
Vomiting serves an important purpose. It cleanses your body of potential toxins or health risks. In fact, your stomach is given marching orders by a specific area of your brain.
The desire to puke is a multi-step process: the chemoreceptor trigger center is directly connected to the vomiting center in the brain and is the first to notice something wrong. It could be motion sickness, a foul odor, or that leftover Pad Thai that smelled a little fishy but looked fine. We feel the beginnings of nausea and are allowed to correct ourselves if possible.
Our digestion slows down depending on what is causing the unrest. If the source of our discomfort is toxic, such as potential botulism, the upper portion of the stomach will convulse while the lower exit snaps shut. There’s only one way out, and it’s time to make a mad dash to the bathroom for the unavoidable.
We’ll feel queasy for a while if the nausea is caused by something mental rather than something physical such as a bad smell, a bumpy plane ride, or an emotional shock. Usually, the brain will communicate with the stomach to indicate that there is no danger, and nausea will fade away on its own.
Everyone’s tolerance level for nausea varies, but one thing experts agree on, as unpleasant as vomiting is, you’ll feel much better afterward, thanks to the endorphins released during the process. (Source: Mental Floss)
How Can We Prevent Vomiting?
A person suffering from nausea has the uneasy feeling that they will vomit. Gagging, retching, choking, involuntary stomach reflexes, mouth-filling with saliva to protect the teeth from stomach acid, and needing to move or bend over are signs of vomiting.
If you feel nauseous, resting in a sitting or propped lying position can help; activity can worsen nausea and vomiting. (Source: Everyday Health)
What Are the Complications of Vomiting?
Dehydration, which occurs when the body loses more water than it takes in, is one of the most severe complications of vomiting. When a person is dehydrated, their body lacks sufficient water to perform its normal functions.
Vomiting can be fatal in certain circumstances. During vomiting, the gag reflex prevents the liquid contents of your stomach from entering your respiratory tract and suffocating you. People who vomit while high on drugs or alcohol or lying on their backs are at risk of choking on their vomit because their gag reflex is compromised. (Source: Everyday Health)