Can Anxiety Make You Nauseous? Exploring The Reasons, Causes & More
Have you ever worried so much about something that you started to feel physically sick? Well, there’s a reason behind that. Anxiety is not only an emotional reaction to stress and worry but it can also cause physical responses such as nausea and vomiting.
Nausea is a sign of anxiety and involves an easy feeling of being sick in your stomach. Nausea that anxiety causes can interfere with your ability to perform daily tasks. Similar to other mental and physical symptoms of anxiety, nausea can be sudden and can hinder your professional life, social life, and personal life.
In this blog, let’s take a look at how anxiety causes nausea, the reasons behind it, and how you can cure nausea that anxiety causes.
Does Anxiety Cause Nausea?
Anxiety is our body’s response to stress, fear, or unease. When we’re anxious, our brain releases neurotransmitters that put our body on alert. During this, our body prepares itself with the “fight-or-flight” response.
When we’re anxious, our brain releases cortisol and adrenaline. These chemicals, when entering the digestive tract, can upset the balance of microorganisms in our gut. An imbalance in the gut then results in nausea.
Other than nausea, rapid heart rate, heavy breathing, dizziness, and muscle tension, anxiety can cause:
- Stomach cramps
- Hunger or loss of appetite
- Irritable bowel syndrome
It’s important to note that not all people with anxiety issues experience nausea and not all nausea can be anxiety-related.
Why Does Anxiety Cause Nausea?
Anxiety-related nausea can be due to various reasons. In some people, stress causes nausea or nauseating-like symptoms, in others, it can be a different response other than the stress response.
Anxiety, in small amounts, can even be healthy for us. Symptoms like nausea can be a signal from our body to our brain that there is something dangerous nearby and to be on guard.
When you’re stressed but not in danger, nausea can cause unease and distress. Stress causes our body to activate the stress response (fight-or-flight), which triggers the autonomic nervous system.
This, then, releases adrenaline among other adrenal-related hormones. These hormones affect the stomach lining, causing poor digestion, and hyperventilation.
Too much stress can also cause muscle contractions in your abdomen. Muscle tensions then squeeze your stomach in a way that causes nausea. Remember, your gut is connected to your brain. Anxiety causes hormonal imbalance in the brain that can affect your gut too.
Several anxiety disorders can cause nausea too:
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder
- Social Anxiety
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
- Panic Disorder
How Anxiety Causes Nausea?
Anxiety can make you hypersensitive to your body’s response. When your senses become heightened, the normal signs of nausea (which you would have ignored otherwise) can feel severe and hard to control.
Anxiety can also cause an imbalance in neurotransmitters such as serotonin. Serotonin plays a huge role in maintaining chemical balance in our gut. Low serotonin or any kind of imbalance in neurotransmitters can trigger nausea too.
Quick Cure For Anxiety-Related Nausea
Nausea because of anxiety is not dangerous but it can be distressing. If you’re experiencing nausea frequently, it’s recommended you speak to a doctor to rule out any possible health issues.
If your nausea is due to anxiety, then there’s a high chance you’re struggling with too much stress.
Here are some quick ways you can cure your anxiety-related nausea:
1. Go For A Run
Going for a run is one of the best ways to deal with anxiety. Running helps loosen your muscles that can reduce the tension in your gut. The exercise also releases endorphins that can help decrease adrenaline, improve your mood, and reduce stress.
2. Try Deep Breathing
Deep breathing can help you control your stress response. Taking slow and measured breaths can help you get your mind and body in control and the present. You can try practicing 4-7-8 breathing or progressive muscle relaxation.
3. Eat Something Light
Your food habits don’t necessarily affect your anxiety and anxiety-related nausea but they can affect the intensity of your nausea. Eating heavy meals or greasy meals when you’re anxious can worsen your nausea.
4. Keep Yourself Hydrated
If your anxiety makes you nauseous, make sure you drink plenty of water to calm your upset stomach. Dehydration can worsen your anxiety and nausea, so drink plenty of liquids and stay hydrated when you feel anxiety rising.
When anxiety makes you throw up, it can be a sign that your body and mind are under too much stress. Nausea can be a sign of anxiety including dizziness, stomach cramps, and more. Anxiety can heighten your senses and can make you more sensitive to nausea-like feelings.
Walking, keeping yourself hydrated, and eating something light can help prevent anxiety-related nausea from worsening.
If you’re frequently nauseous and anxious, it can be a sign of an underlying anxiety disorder. It is recommended you seek professional advice and get a proper diagnosis.
I hope this article helped you understand how anxiety causes nausea. If you’d like more information, you can write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org or DM us on social media. If you found this article helpful, let us know in the comments below.