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What is nausea?

Nausea is an urge to vomit or a general uneasiness in the stomach. If nausea is the only symptom your child has, it is rarely caused by anything serious. Nausea is often caused by:

  • A stomach virus (which also causes vomiting)
  • Indigestion
  • Food poisoning
  • Some medicines
  • Fear or stress
  • Motion sickness

How can I take care of my child?

Temporarily serve your child clear fluids and light foods such as crackers or bread. Allow your child to temporarily select their diet. Avoid fried or greasy foods.

If caused by a medicine, give all future dosages after a snack (such as some soda crackers) or meal. Medicines given on an empty stomach are more likely to cause nausea or pain. Another option is to give half the dose now and the other half 60 minutes later.

When should I call my child's healthcare provider?

Call during office hours if:

  • Medicine is causing the nausea and not improve with this advice.
  • The nausea lasts more than 1 week.
  • Your teenage daughter could be pregnant.
  • You have other questions or concerns.
Written by Barton D. Schmitt, MD, author of “My Child Is Sick,” American Academy of Pediatrics Books.
Pediatric Advisor 2019.4 published by Change Healthcare.
Last modified: 2016-10-13
Last reviewed: 2018-07-13
This content is reviewed periodically and is subject to change as new health information becomes available. The information is intended to inform and educate and is not a replacement for medical evaluation, advice, diagnosis or treatment by a healthcare professional.
Copyright ©1986-2018 Barton D. Schmitt, MD FAAP. All rights reserved.
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