The different types of nausea, what they mean, and how to feel better ASAP

What could be making you feel like you wanna throw up.

different types of nausea

Feeling like you’re going to throw up can be caused by something trivial like smelling the Tupperware of leftovers you forgot about in the back of the fridge, or by something more extreme, like being pregnant. Here are the most common different types of nausea, and how to treat them.

Food poisoning

One minute you’re enjoying some suspicious street meats, the next you’re overwhelmed with the desire to throw up.

How to fix it

Unfortunately, you’ve got to ride this one out. Nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhoea is your body’s way of getting rid of the aforementioned street meats and you’ll usually feel better within 24 hours. When you are able to stomach food again stick to the BRAT diet (that’s bananas, rice, applesauce and toast) for your first few meals.


Medication is supposed to make you feel better, but often one of the side-effects is nausea. Antidepressants, antibiotics and ibuprofen are just a few of the medications that can typically cause nausea.

How to fix it

Talk to your doctor who prescribed you the medication about your side-effects and what to do about it.


Heartburn has nothing to do with your heart and lots to do with some of the contents of your stomach coming back up the wrong way. It doesn’t feel good TBH, and the burning feeling in your chest can come served with a side of nausea.

How to fix it

For immediate relief take an antacid, and to avoid heartburn and its accompanying nausea in the future avoid common triggers like acidic or spicy foods, alcohol and caffeine.

Motion sickness

Not all of us were cut out to travel at sea, or even by car. Motion sickness is real and can make you feel dizzy, feel nauseous and even throw up.

How to fix it

For instant relief you can try looking into the horizon, not looking at a phone screen, taking over driving duties (motion sickness usually only affects passengers), drinking water, and getting fresh air. You can also take anti-nausea medicine just before you know you’re about to make a potentially stomach-churning trip.

An ulcer

Eating when you have a stomach ulcer is both painful and can make you feel nauseous.

How to fix it

If you suspect you might have a stomach ulcer you should definitely go to the doctor. Other symptoms include stomach pain, weight loss, chronic acid reflux, bloody vomit and feeling full quickly.

Your diet

Eating foods that don’t sit easily in your stomach, such as spicy or high-fat foods, can cause nausea, as can eating food you’re allergic to.

How to fix it

Keep a food diary and note when you feel nauseous to figure out what foods you should avoid.


When a woman says she’s feeling queasy the first question that pops into most people’s minds is ‘Could you be pregnant?’. Nausea occurs in the early stages of 50%-90% of pregnancies.

How to fix it

Take a pregnancy test!

When should I see a doctor about my nausea?

  • If your nausea is accompanied by a crushing chest pain, intense headache and pain in your left arm (it could be a heart attack).
  • If you haven’t been able to eat or drink anything for more than 12 hours.
  • If your nausea doesn’t ease up within 24 hours.
  • If you’re also experiencing headaches, a stiff neck, difficulty breathing and confusion.

Read more body health.