Does Anxiety Cause Vomiting?

Yes, anxiety can potentially lead to vomiting in some individuals. Anxiety triggers the body’s “fight or flight” response, which involves a surge of adrenaline and other stress hormones. These physiological changes can affect various systems in the body, including the gastrointestinal system.

Anxiety-related vomiting can occur for several reasons:

  • Nausea: Anxiety can stimulate the body’s “rest and digest” response, which slows down digestion. This can lead to a buildup of stomach acid and cause feelings of nausea, which may eventually lead to vomiting.
  • Hyperventilation: Anxiety often leads to rapid, shallow breathing, which can disrupt the balance of carbon dioxide in the blood. This can result in respiratory alkalosis, a condition that can cause symptoms like dizziness, lightheadedness, and vomiting.
  • Stress-Induced GI Upset: The stress response can impact the gastrointestinal system, leading to symptoms such as stomach discomfort, bloating, and vomiting.
  • Panic Attacks: Intense anxiety or panic attacks can lead to a range of physical symptoms, including vomiting. The overwhelming sensations and fear during a panic attack can trigger a vomiting response in some individuals.

It’s important to note that while anxiety can lead to vomiting, vomiting is not always directly caused by anxiety. Other factors, such as infections, food poisoning, medication side effects, and underlying medical conditions, can also lead to vomiting.

If you experience persistent or severe vomiting along with anxiety, it’s recommended to consult with a healthcare professional. They can help assess your symptoms, determine the underlying cause, and provide appropriate treatment or strategies for managing anxiety-related symptoms.