How to Stop Throwing Up

Relief from constant vomiting and nausea

Resting, slowly introducing water (and later, bland foods), and using natural remedies like ginger tea are all helpful suggestions for how to stop throwing up and ease nausea. While they aren't guaranteed, they can give your stomach a chance to settle, reducing the likelihood of you vomiting again and becoming dehydrated.

how to stop throwing up when you're sick

Verywell / JR Bee

In some cases, prescription medications that control queasiness and vomiting may be recommended.

This article outlines how to stop throwing up, step by step, so you can support your body as it recovers and feel better faster.

Common Causes of Constant Vomiting

1) Let Your Stomach Rest

If you've been vomiting, the first step is to let your stomach rest. After you stop throwing up, don't try to eat or drink anything for 15 to 20 minutes so you can allow your stomach time to recover.

Sit quietly and avoid lying down when you are having a vomiting episode; moving around can make nausea worse. Giving the muscles in your stomach time to rest will lower the chances that you will vomit once you start eating and drinking again.

2) Drink Fluids Before Trying Food

If you have not vomited again after a period of rest, try to take small sips of liquid every five to 10 minutes. While it's important not to overtax your stomach, it's also important to avoid becoming dehydrated as a result of vomiting.

The best fluids to try include:

  • Water
  • Sports drinks (such as Gatorade)
  • Electrolyte-replacement drinks (such as Pedialyte) for children

Drinks such as carbonated sodas and milk should be avoided until you are able to begin eating your normal diet.

If you are caring for a small child who is sick, be careful not to let them drink a lot of fluid all at once. It may be easier to keep an eye on those amounts by using a syringe or a spoon to give liquid, rather than a cup or baby bottle.

If vomiting begins again after starting fluids, go back to step 1. If you or your child can keep down small amounts, slowly drink more with each sip.

3) Start on the BRAT Diet

If you or your child is able to keep clear liquids down for eight to 12 hours, try to start eating. Start with small amounts of bland, starchy foods (e.g, plain pasta, crackers, etc.) Foods that are heavy, fatty, or acidic should be avoided until you are better.

The BRAT diet is a good option, as it includes bland foods that are easy to digest. These include bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast, though the diet can be modified with the addition of similar foods as well.

If you start throwing up again after you try these foods, go back to step 1.

4) Start a Normal Diet

If you are able to keep both clear liquids and bland foods down, you may be ready to move toward your normal diet. It will likely be a day or two after you have stopped throwing up before you fully return to it, though.

Once you decide you can eat again, take it slowly even if you feel better. If you start to feel sick after eating but do not vomit again, go back to the BRAT diet. If you do start throwing up again, go back to step 1 and call your healthcare provider.

Natural Remedies

In addition to following the recommended steps, you may want to try some natural remedies for vomiting. Herbal remedies that are thought to relieve nausea and/or vomiting include:

  • Ginger tea, root, or candies
  • Peppermint tea or candies
  • Cinnamon tea

Acupressure can be used for nausea and vomiting as well:

  1. Place the first three fingers of your hand horizontally across your other wrist.
  2. Locate the two large tendons under your thumb.
  3. Using your thumb and forefinger, put pressure on this point for two to three minutes.


There are prescription drugs that can help control vomiting. Depending on the case, a healthcare provider may decide that one of them will help you feel better:

  • Phenergan (promethazine) is an antihistamine that can also be used to control nausea and vomiting. It is not usually used in children.
  • Zofran (ondansetron) was first used to treat severe nausea and vomiting after chemotherapy. It has fewer side effects than Phenergan and is often used to treat vomiting from other illnesses as well.

Does Pepto-Bismol Stop Vomiting?

Pepto-Bismol (bismuth subsalicylate) treats an upset stomach by coating its lining, but it doesn't keep you from throwing up if you have a stomach virus. Children under 12 and anyone under 18 who has recently had the flu or chickenpox should not take Pepto-Bismol, as it can raise the risk of Reye's syndrome.

Vomiting in Children

The risk of dehydration is greater in infants and children who have been vomiting, especially if they are also have a fever of diarrhea. This is because their bodies are less efficient at conserving water than adults. Also, it takes less fluid loss to lead to dehydration due to their smaller size.

Children can follow the same steps to relieve vomiting as adults. Breastfeeding infants can be given breast milk as part of the liquids-only step.

But caretakers should be on the lookout for signs of dehydration in children, such as:

  • Crying without tears
  • Dry mouth
  • Less urination/fewer or no wet diapers
  • Irritability
  • Tiredness
  • Sunken abdomen, eyes, cheeks, or fontanel (an infant's "soft spot")

If you notice them, contact your child's healthcare provider right away.

Constant Vomiting: When to Worry

Call a healthcare provider if:

  • You've been vomiting for more than two days
  • Your child is 1 to 2 years old and has been vomiting for more than 24 hours
  • Your baby has been vomiting for more than 12 hours
  • You've been vomiting off and on for more than one month
  • You're experiencing ongoing nausea and vomiting with weight loss

Most illnesses that cause vomiting resolve on their own. In some cases, however, vomiting can be a sign of something more serious. See a healthcare provider at once if:

  • You have symptoms of dehydration such as dry mouth, dark urine, and dizziness 
  • You're throwing up blood or your vomit looks like coffee grounds
  • You have a severe headache
  • You are pregnant and have been vomiting three or four times per day. (This can be a symptom of a rare but potentially dangerous pregnancy complication known as hyperemesis gravidarum.)

Call 911 for severe symptoms such as seizures, confusion, or difficulty remaining conscious. These can be signs of alcohol poisoning in someone who is vomiting due to excessive alcohol intake.


Resting your stomach, sipping small amounts of fluid, and then eating foods that are "safe" for your stomach will help stop vomiting in most cases. If these tips don't provide relief within a day or two, call your healthcare professional, who can check to see if you are dehydrated and advise you on how to proceed.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do you stop throwing up after food poisoning?

    Food poisoning often just needs to run its course. Many cases resolve in a day or two. While you're recovering, stick to bland foods and sip fluids slowly to stay hydrated.

11 Sources
Verywell Health uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
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  5. Jaafarpour M, Hatefi M, Najafi F, Khajavikhan J, Khani A. The effect of cinnamon on menstrual bleeding and systemic symptoms with primary dysmenorrheaIran Red Crescent Med J. 2015;17(4):e27032. doi:10.5812/ircmj.17(4)2015.27032

  6. Acupressure for nausea and vomiting | Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. October 24, 2019.

  7. Silverman RA, House SL, Meltzer AC, et al. Bimodal release ondansetron for acute gastroenteritis among adolescents and adults: a randomized clinical trialJAMA Netw Open. 2019;2(11):e1914988. doi: doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2019.14988

  8. Nemours Foundation. Reye's syndrome. Reviewed February 2019.

  9. American Academy of Pediatrics. Drinks to prevent dehydration when your child is vomiting.

  10. Nemours. KidsHealth. Dehydration.

  11. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Understanding the dangers of alcohol overdose.

Additional Reading

By Kristina Duda, RN
Kristina Duda, BSN, RN, CPN, has been working in healthcare since 2002. She specializes in pediatrics and disease and infection prevention.