General Question

le_inferno's avatar

Why do we salivate a lot when we're about to throw up?

Asked by le_inferno (6154 points ) May 22nd, 2010

You know the feeling of when you’re just on the verge of puking… paired with the gagging feeling, you get that watery saliva. Why does that happen?

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7 Answers

FutureMemory's avatar

I can only assume it’s to ‘lubricate’ your mouth and throat area so it all comes out as cleanly, smoothly and quickly as possible.

gailcalled's avatar

Distant early warning system to allow you several seconds to find an appropriate spot?

RedPowerLady's avatar

I had always assumed the same as @FutureMemory . It’s our body’s way of lubricating ourself so that the acid from the vomit does not cause pain and so that everything comes out smoothly.

Is it okay I feel a bit grossed out for answering this?

InspecterJones's avatar

Protecting our throat and mouth from stomach acid does seem to make the most sense.

Oh and yes, its gross, I always feel like a hungry wolf.

perspicacious's avatar

I always have considered it my warning to get to the bathroom quickly.

netgrrl's avatar

I have no medical training, but I always assumed it was part of the adrenaline rush that often goes with nausea (which is why we break out in a cold, clammy sweat.)

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