5 ways to fight the effects of nausea caused by antibiotics

You've probably taken antibiotics before because they're effective at treating bacterial infections. Taking them too often, however, may cause you to suffer from nausea, diarrhea and yeast overgrowth. Here's how you can help relieve these side effects.

5 ways to fight the effects of nausea caused by antibiotics

How antibiotics work

Antibiotics work by killing off the bacteria that cause infection, such as strep throat. In turn, this helps to alleviate the associated symptoms which include fever, redness or discharge from the affected area.

In contrast, viral infections (like the flu) don't benefit from a course of antibiotics.

  • If anything, taking antibiotics for the wrong reasons can have negative effects on your health because they don’t just target harmful bacteria, they can also wipe out populations of good bacteria in your body. The result? Symptoms like nausea, diarrhea and yeast overgrowth.
  • What's more, exposing bacteria repeatedly to antibiotics allows them to build up resistance, so the next time you take an antibiotic it may not work. That's where probiotics can potentially help.

Possible side-effects

About one in 10 people experience gastrointestinal discomfort in reaction to common antibiotics. Symptoms may include:

  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloating
  • Abdominal pain
  • Cramping

Other related symptoms could possibly include dizziness and rashes.

5 ways to reduce the symptoms

If you feel that your nausea is not going away anytime soon, consider giving these a try:

  1. Take some probiotics
    Because antibiotics may harm the "good" bacteria in your stomach, which may be the root cause of your discomfort, when taken in the form of a supplement or dairy products (like yogurt) probiotics are helpful because they serve to "replace" the good bacteria that have died off.
  2. Drink ginger tea
    In some instances, ginger-based drinks have shown their effectiveness in soothing the stomach. In fact, ginger also has a reputation in traditional medicine for relieving pain.
  3. Eat small portions frequently
    Eating a number of small meals, rather than three main ones, throughout the day may prove helpful.
  4. Sip liquids
    Drink liquids slowly rather than in gulps. Gulping may cause you to ingest air in the process, which has a tendency to add to your bloated feeling.
  5. Limit sensory input
    Stay away from stimuli that can make nausea worse, such as long car drives or pungent food smells that provoke it further.

If your nausea persists for more than 24 hours and causes vomiting, keep taking fluids to stay hydrated. Above all, see a doctor without delay to determine if your symptoms signify an allergic reaction to the medication, or if there is a more serious underlying condition that merits immediate medical attention.

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