It is absolutely normal for babies and children to vomit occasionally. Generally, it will last for no longer than one to two days and is not considered a sign of anything serious.
Vomiting is most often a symptom of an underlying condition.When the body consumes anything that is unwanted or infected, the body’s defense mechanism causes it to throw out the undigested substances in the form of puking or vomiting. Though the stomach is being cleaned the natural way, frequent bouts of vomiting should get you worried. During a vomiting bout, your kid will expel the contents of the stomach through the mouth. In this article, you will know about some foods and home remedies of vomiting that can help.
Types of Vomiting in Children:
This type of vomiting is very common among babies who are being breastfed. Posseting means throwing up small amounts of milk by babies following each feed.
2) Projectile Vomiting:
If your child throws up the contents of his/her stomach forcefully out, it is known as projectile vomiting. The volume may seem quite large, but the vomit generally consists only of the last feed your child has had. This type of vomit may happen intermittently but can be a matter of concern if it happens after every feed.
Most babies face this type of vomiting. When the valve at the top of the baby’s stomach opens up unintentionally, it causes the stomach contents to travel in a reverse manner up the oesophagus/food pipe. This is called Reflux. Usually reflux in babies is harmless and will stop by the time they begin sitting upright or walking.
Causes of Vomiting in Children:
The following are some of the common reasons that could cause vomiting in children:
1. Food Allergies
If your child is allergic to certain foods like milk, wheat, eggs or fish, this could cause a reaction when he/she eats it. Food allergies often cause severe abdominal pain and this could be followed by nausea and vomiting. (What are some common food allergies in kids?)
The most common cause of vomiting in children is gastroenteritis. It is a gut infection usually caused by bacteria,virus and parasites and can lead to diarrhoea.
3. Digestive Issues
If your child’s appendix is infected or there is a blockage in the digestive system, he/she can suffer from vomiting. Sometimes, overeating may also cause vomiting. Overeating means consuming food which is beyond the ability of the stomach to digest easily. (What are some foods that help in proper digestion?)
4. Food Poisoning
Food poisoning is often the result of the harmful bacteria present in stale or under-cooked food. It can cause severe nausea and vomiting, which can even lead to dehydration. Common signs of food poisoning include nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhoea.
5. Stress and Emotional Disturbance
Sometimes stress or emotional disturbance may also cause nausea and vomiting in children. If you have recently moved to a new city or if your child is now attending a different school, these changes can cause excessive stress. Your kid might also feel stressed before or during exams or while competing in debates/competitions.When a child undergoes an emotional trauma (death in the family or divorce or separation of parents), it might also lead to excessive vomiting.
6. Flu and Other Illnesses
Seasonal allergies, acid reflux, swine flu and ear infections are some diseases that can induce vomiting in young children. Appendicitis causes severe abdominal pain which could lead to vomiting in young kids. Labyrinthitis (ear infection) leads to extreme dizziness and this spinning sensation is also a common cause for vomiting in kids.
Home Remedies of Vomiting:
Here are some foods and home remedies of vomiting that can help to get rid of vomiting and give immediate relief.
In order to stop vomiting in children, ginger is a proven remedy, since it contains natural antiemetic properties. Ginger has qualities that can ease the irritation of the stomach and bring instant relief. Crush a piece of ginger and put it in water. Add one teaspoon of honey and sip it the entire day. Kids love fresh ginger tea with honey, so you can try that as well.
2. Cloves and cardamom:
Keep a few pieces of cloves or cardamom in your mouth and suck them for long. The aroma and taste of cloves and cardamom can help to stop vomiting. It also reduces the sensitivity of the mouth. Drinking clove tea also helps to avoid vomiting.
3. Salt and Sugar Solution
This age-old remedy is quick to make and can be made from these everyday ingredients. Continuous vomiting can aggravate the stomach lining, lead to severe dehydration and expel essential nutrients like sodium and potassium from the child’s body. This solution will not allow the body to get dehydrated and would prevent weakness of the body. It acts as a natural electrol.
Papaya is packed with antibacterial compounds which help digestion and reduce acids in the body. It contains all the necessary natural enzymes that facilitate the smooth and quick digestion of food. And is also helpful in removing harmful germs that cause stomach upsets.
5. Onion Juice
Mix one teaspoon of onion juice with a similar quantity of ginger juice and feed it to your child. It is one of the extremely useful home remedies of vomiting and nausea since it contains natural antibiotic properties.
Cumin seeds enhance the pancreatic enzyme secretion and hence is known as one of the best home remedies of vomiting. It helps in improving digestion and reducing any stomach discomfort. Boil a cup of water and add freshly ground cumin seeds to it. Adding a bit of nutmeg to this mixture can further enhance its effectiveness. You can also try ½ teaspoon of cumin powder and cardamom along with one teaspoon of honey. Make sure that your child consumes this mixture slowly to keep vomiting at bay.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
Take one tablespoon of honey and apple cider vinegar and mix both in a glass of water. Give this mixture to your child at regular intervals. The antimicrobial properties of vinegar are helpful in curing food poisoning. Mix vinegar with water and rinse the mouth with it. This will eliminate the acidic smell of vomit and reduce the vomiting sensation that rises due to it. (Benefits of apple cider vinegar?)
Mint is a wonderful antidote for vomiting that works wonders. Boil water and add one tablespoon of dried mint leaves. Keep the mint leaves in the water for 10 minutes and then strain it. Give this solution thrice a day to get relief from vomiting. Chewing on fresh mint leaves is also a proven method of reducing the feeling of nausea. A mix of lemon juice, mint juice and honey (one teaspoon each) can be equally effective in vomiting
9. Rice Water
Rice water is basically the starch from white rice. When gastritis is the reason for a bout of vomiting, rice water can be really effective. Make sure you make use of white rice and not brown, since the starch from white rice is easily digestible for young children. Take one cup of white rice, two cups of water and boil it. Strain this mixture and separate the rice water in a cup. This rice water helps to reduce and stop vomiting.
10. Saunf or fennel seeds:
Chewing saunf at regular intervals is extremely effective in stopping nausea and vomiting. It acts as a mouth freshner and makes the person feel much better. You can also have fennel tea to avoid vomiting. Take one teaspoon of fennel seeds and add one cup of boiling water. Steep for 10 minutes and strain before drinking.
When to see the Doctor?
It is important to seek medical help immediately when you notice the following symptoms in your child:
- Bile or blood in the vomit
- Uncontrolled retching and gagging
- Stomach ache
- Continuous vomiting
- Body temperature above 104°C
- Blood in stool
- Projectile vomiting
- Lethargy or slow to respond
If your child is suffering from vomiting, he/she must take sufficient rest. He/she must lie down on their back and not on the stomach. Long hours of rest are very helpful in improving the condition. Vomiting can cause a lot of weakness and if precautions are not taken, it can be fatal. Therefore, it is suggested that vomiting must never be suppressed voluntarily as the body is making an effort to get rid of substances in the body that could be dangerous to health.
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