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Nausea and Vomiting Care

Most nausea, vomiting & diarrhea are caused by viruses and will go away in less than a few days. 

You should get medical care if: You aren’t better after 48 hours; You have black or bloody diarrhea or blood in your vomit; You have a fever higher than 100.4 F (38 C); You have very yellow urine or don’t need to urinate for more than 5 hours or you have severe belly pain.


You can try these things to help yourself feel better:

  • Drink lots of fluids if possible, but start slowly with 1-2 sips every 5 minutes.  If you become nauseated, wait 20-30 minutes and then begin again.  Wait 20-30 minutes to be sure you don’t have more vomiting or diarrhea. You can also use Pedialyte or make an Oral Rehydrating Solution (ORS) by mixing ½ level teaspoon of salt and 6 level teaspoons of sugar into 1 Liter of water (1.05 U.S. quart) (33 ounces).  Be exact about these amounts. If you are drinking without problems for a few hours, start more clear liquids.



Please avoidred fluids and foods as it may appear to be blood

  • Water
  • Sports Drinks - the sugar content is higher than optimal for this purpose, so it is better to dilute it by mixing half sports drink with half water.
  • Popsicles
  • Jell-O
  • Kool-Aid - decrease the sugar
  • Tea - weak and decaffeinated best
  • Clear broth or bouillon

Once you are drinking without vomiting or diarrhea for at least 4-5 hours & you feel hungry, eat small amounts 6-8 times a day. Start with soft, bland foods, such as plain yogurt, plain cooked pasta, cooked vegetables, steamed rice, bananas or lean meat. Breads, dry cereal, toast and saltine crackers that have dense carbohydrates can help. Avoid foods that have a lot of fat in them. They can make nausea worse. 

Return to a nutritionally balanced diet of protein, grain, fruit and vegetables as soon as you can tolerate it, but try to not rush it too quickly.

Do not eat or drink these while you are sick, wait several days (48-72 hours) after you are well to resume:

  • alcohol
  • pizza
  • fatty, fried, greasy or spicy food
  • uncooked or fresh fruit or vegetables including salad

Do not take: aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen, as these may irritate your stomach.

You make take acetaminophen (Tylenol) 500-1000 mg every 6 hours as needed for pain.

If you are taking a birth control pill for contraception; be sure to use condoms for the next 7 days. The absorption of your pill may have been affected while you were sick.