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DesireeCassandra's avatar

How do I help someone stop vomiting?

Asked by DesireeCassandra (1130 points ) December 6th, 2010

My gf has been sick all morning. She has vomited about 5 times today, she felt cold, but now feels hot, and is weak. I have given her flat ginger ale, water, and gatorade. Nothing seems to stay down. What can I do?

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14 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

ER maybe the best bet. You tried all the things i would do.

BarnacleBill's avatar

There is a stomach virus going around; it’s nasty and lasts about 3 days. The vomiting usually stops after 24 hours, but then you feel like crap for 2 days after that.

JLeslie's avatar

She should not eat or drink anything. Nothing! For a few hours. If it does not stop and she continues to dry heave, think about going to the doctor. After a few hours try some water or ginger ale. She may throw up a couple of more times, but things should calm down after 12 hours or so. Mild food poisoning and/or the 24 hour flu should not last more than 24 hours. If she has a fever or is very fearful somethng is very wrong, the doctor or hospital can prescribe antinausea drugs.

Seelix's avatar

Vomiting is the body’s way of saying that it doesn’t want something in there. So, unfortunately, she may just have to deal with it for a little while. I’d suggest the same thing that @JLeslie did – she shouldn’t try to take anything for a few hours. As soon as she is able to keep liquids down, though, she ought to work on rehydrating herself.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I’m with the nothing crowd, but watch for dehydration. Pinch a little skin on her arm and if it starts getting less elastic, head to the Dr or ER.

guitargirl93's avatar

She should sit in a dark, quiet room with a cold cloth on her head and try to relax and try having her suck on ice chips every so often, it’ll help her stay hydrated. It shouldn’t last more than 24 hours and if she is throwing up constantly around 30 minutes apart, I would go to the ER.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I think @Adirondackwannabe has the best advice so far. Don’t try to ‘prevent’ vomiting unless a particular poison has been ingested for which vomiting is not recommended, such as lye or other strong base, or an acid. (If you suspect any kind of poison, then contact Poison Control immediately and take their advice.)

But if she’s just ill with the flu, hung over, pregnant with morning sickness, ate something iffy from the fridge, etc., then all that’s required is to make her as comfortable as possible, give her fluids if she wants them, and monitor hydration. “A day of vomiting” for an otherwise healthy person, though it may make her feel like she’s dying (or wants to) won’t hurt her long term.

It also helps – a lot – to have a clean bath towel laid out on the bed (and maybe one on the floor, too) and a clean bucket or large bowl right there for when the run to the bathroom is just too much.

JLeslie's avatar

I wanted to add that the big fear of dehydration is for infants and young children. Adults don’t dehydrate quickly, and she can communicate to you if she is thirsty, unlike children, who don’t know better, and don’t take care of themselves well when sick. A few hours without fluid should not be dangerous.

Trillian's avatar

If you really want her to stop hurling, I think that Meclizine is the only OTC anti emetic left. It’s in a little round container and is ostensibly for motion sickness.

tigress3681's avatar

As someone mentioned, don’t consume anything. Maybe 1 simple cracker (saltine type simple) and sip fluids after an hour after she stops hurling. Do not drink large quantities until the vomit stops. From what I have experienced, large amounts of water/food in the stomach seem to make the nervous system think there is more of the bad stuff still present.

Jwtd's avatar

There are electrolytic drinks at the pharmacy that have helped me during similar sickness. The best after all the vomiting is to stay warm and sleep.

Winters's avatar

Reminds me of when I had old sailor’s disease (except I vomited once every hour for a solid day whether or not there was anything to vomit), but best bet is to go see a doctor.

spykenij's avatar

Since I throw up all the time now due to a jacked up condition called Central Sensitization that conveniently for me no one has ever heard of before, here’s what the ER will do. She should not have anything to drink if she’s just bringing it back up again. If it’s really acidic, let her take small sips of ice-water. Trust me, I filled a 2000ml emesis bag in less than an hour because of this. They don’t want her to drink because they don’t want to throw off any tests. She’ll have to give a urine specimen, they will place an IV if she’s lucky enough for them to find her veins and take blood for testing. Once that is all over, they are going to want to give you an anti-vomit drug. Phenergan works the best (for me personally), it comes in suppository form too, so that’s helpful when you keep upchucking. Zofran is a newer one they’ve been using and that comes in sublingual (under the tongue) form, so she doesn’t throw it up. If she is in pain, most hospitals refuse to give you Phenergan for nausea and Dilaudid for pain together because “it causes breathing problems”...I would say, they stopped giving it together because it’s somewhat euphoric. The best combo for me is Dilaudid and Phenergan. They can pack my ass full of phenergan and I won’t stop vomitting until my pain is gone… 3+years of this and I still haven’t figured out how to live like this myself because when I throw up, I will throw up until my lips are blue and I’m passing out, in shock… :P Good luck!

JLeslie's avatar

Is the worst over? Is she feeling better?

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