What are the Most Common Causes of Nausea?

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  • Written By: Alex Paul
  • Edited By: Jacob Harkins
  • Last Modified Date: 07 November 2019
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Nausea can be caused by a wide range of different problems and conditions. It has been estimated that there are more than 700 different potential causes. Some of the most common causes of nausea include infections, food poisoning, pregnancy and motion sickness. Curing nausea usually involves trying to work out the initial cause as it is often a symptom of another problem rather than a condition by itself. Other potential nausea triggers include stress and tiredness.

Food poisoning is a common cause of nausea. When nausea is caused by bacteria from contaminated or uncooked food then the symptoms can begin suddenly. Usually the symptoms will disappear after a day or two although the most severe cases may last longer.

Certain types of medication are known to cause nausea. For example, medication associated with chemotherapy is a common cause of sickness. Pills given to patients after operations under an anesthetic also commonly cause a feeling of intense nausea.

Pregnancy is one of the most common causes of nausea. Morning sickness affects the majority of women who are pregnant and can cause nausea with or without vomiting. Although pregnancy often causes nausea in the early hours, it can also cause it throughout the day. Pregnancy can cause nausea at around the six-week mark and is often the first sign of pregnancy.


Although in the vast majority of cases of nausea there isn’t a serious problem, there are some severe conditions that can cause it. For example, problems after surgery and hepatitis are known to be common nausea triggers and need to be treated quickly after diagnosis. For this reason if a person suffers from nausea over a long period of time then he or she should visit a doctor.

Other potential nausea triggers include motion sickness and infections. Motion sickness occurs when there isn’t an agreement between what movement a person can see visually and what the body is sensing. This is commonly called travel sickness and can have a number of other effects including dizziness and tiredness.

Sometimes discovering the true cause of nausea requires looking at other symptoms that may be present. Nausea without vomiting, for example, can signify a certain type of condition while nausea with vomiting is more likely to be a problem such as food poisoning. Nausea and vomiting over a long period of time can cause dehydration which is important to avoid.


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Post 3

I have a terrible condition called motion sickness. I'm convinced that it's the result of my heavy antibiotic use for a stomach bug last month. I can't stay in any vehicle for too long because of the nausea.

Post 2

@ysmina-- Do you know about the ingredients of the sweets you're eating? You might have a food intolerance or allergy to the ingredients.

I know that many pre-made sweets contain artificial sweeteners and sugar alcohols instead of real sugar nowadays. Most of us are not used to consuming a lot of these and I know for a fact that sugar alcohols can cause nausea and diarrhea.

I don't want to scare you, but your symptoms also sound like diabetes. I have family members with type two diabetes and they have the same issues after eating sweets, especially nausea. You might want to get a glucose tolerance test.

Post 1

Why do I get nauseated when I eat sweets?

For the past few months, I've noticed that I don't tolerate sweets very well. I don't eat that much sweets. I have a few fruits during the day and I will have a slice of cake on special occasions. But whenever I do eat sweets, I feel nauseated soon afterwards. A few times, I've actually vomited and I also don't feel hungry for a very long time after eating sweets. I just feel very thirsty.

I never had this problem before, it has started recently. What could be the cause?

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