Most people have experienced the urge to vomit at some point in their lives. Maybe it was from food poisoning, a stomach bug, or one too many tequila shots. Whatever the cause, the experience is universally unpleasant. But for some people, the urge to vomit can be a near-constant feeling.
This condition is called cyclic vomiting syndrome (CVS), and it can be extremely debilitating. Thankfully, there are treatments available that can help lessen the frequency and severity of CVS episodes.
What is Cyclic Vomiting Syndrome?
Cyclic vomiting syndrome is a disorder that causes recurring episodes of nausea and vomiting. These episodes can last anywhere from a few hours to several days. Episodes typically occur in cycles, with long periods of symptom-free remission in between. CVS most often affects children and young adults, but it can occur at any age. The exact cause of CVS is unknown, but it’s thought to be related to factors like migraines, anxiety, stress, and food allergies.
How to Vomit Without a Gag Reflex
There are a few things you can do to help lessen the severity of your CVS episodes:
Get Plenty of Rest: When you’re in the throes of a CVS episode, all you’ll want to do is curl up in bed and sleep it off. And that’s actually not a bad idea! Getting plenty of rest can help shorten the duration of an episode.
Stay Hydrated: Dehydration can make CVS symptoms worse, so it’s important to drink plenty of fluids when you’re feeling ill. Try sipping on clear liquids like water or broth throughout the day. Avoid sugary drinks or alcohol, as they can make dehydration worse.
Eat Bland Foods: When your nausea subsides enough that you’re able to eat solid foods again, stick to bland options like toast or crackers. Steer clear of spicy or greasy foods until you’re feeling better – they’ll only make your nausea worse.
Apply Pressure: Applying pressure to the P6 point – which is located three finger-widths above your wrist, on the outer side of your forearm – can help calm an upset stomach and lessen nausea. You can use your fingers to apply pressure or wear a bracelet specifically designed for this purpose.
Take Medication: If lifestyle changes and home remedies aren’t providing relief, your doctor may prescribe medication to help ease your symptoms. Antiemetics like Zofran or Phenergan can help control nausea and vomiting during a CVS episode. These medications are typically taken before symptoms start or at the first sign of nausea.
Cyclic vomiting syndrome is a disorder that causes recurrent episodes of nausea and vomiting. These episodes can be extremely debilitating, but there are treatments available that can help lessen their frequency and severity. If you think you may have CVS, talk to your doctor about treatment options.
In the meantime, there are some things you can do at home to help ease your symptoms: get plenty of rest, stay hydrated, eat bland foods, apply pressure to the P6 point on your forearm, and take over-the-counter medications like Zofran or Phenergan as needed.