Did you know there are occasions where throwing up is actually healthy? After all, vomiting is a natural mechanism for helping your body get rid of harmful substances. Sometimes the body can’t get rid of things that make you ill, like spoiled food, pills, and non-corrosive poison. The important thing about self-inducing vomit is doing it correctly and knowing when to do it. If you want to know how to make yourself throw up safely, read our guide below.
When You Should Not Make Yourself Throw Up
In some cases, self-inducing vomit can lead to serious danger. Let’s see which are the occasions where you should absolutely not make yourself throw up.
After Ingesting Corrosive Substances
Throwing up corrosive substances is highly dangerous, as warned by the American Association of Poison Control. It can damage your digestive system and your airways, as well as interfering with proper treatments. Besides, it won’t effectively remove the poison from your body.
Luckily, we don’t expect you to find any good reason to ingest gasoline, acid, shampoo or any of the sorts.
Throwing up corrosive substances can move the poison to your lungs, damage your esophagus and make your stomach absorb the poison more quickly.
As you see, it will only make the problem worse. In some cases, the process could be life-threatening. If you or someone else has ingested any of the following substances, call your local emergency number or your closest poison center.
- Chemicals and acids. This includes things like bleach, pesticides, and acids. This could lead to chemical burns in your mouth, throat, and esophagus.
- Petroleum-based substances. Vomiting products like gasoline, kerosene and paint thinner could spread them to your airways, causing dangerous burns.
- Frothing substances. We’re talking about soaps, detergents, and shampoos. They’re very lightweight, so it’s even more likely that these will get to your airways, where they will cause inflammation and more burns.
- Solid or sharp objects. Small objects like coins, rings, and toys can injure your throat and cause breathing problems by blocking your airways.
When Wanting to Lose Weight
Throwing up food to lose weight just doesn’t work. There’s a common misconception that says that inducing vomit will lead you to lose weight.
This is not only completely false, but it will actually make you gain weight in the long term, as it is demonstrated by several studies.
Throwing up after eating can easily become addictive and lead to bulimia, which will cause malnutrition, teeth corrosion and other illnesses.
There are many other safer ways to lose weight. You don’t have to put your life at risk.
When It’s a Good Idea To Throw Up
Now, let’s talk about the situations in which throwing up is safe and useful. The first thing you should know is that you should always leave self-induced vomit as a last resource.
Always try to contact your physician or emergency number first. If you’re given the green light, then go ahead. There are two occasions where throwing up is perfectly fine:
- If you ate rotten or spoiled food. If something you ate is causing your stomach to ache or other illnesses and your body isn’t getting rid of it naturally, it’s safe to make yourself throw up.
- If you ingested non-corrosive poison. It’s relatively safe to make yourself throw up if you ingested pills, cyanide, heroin or other drugs.
How to Make Yourself Throw Up Safely
Now that you know when you should and you should self-induce vomit, here are the best ways to make yourself throw up safely and immediately.
Use Your Index Finger
This is the quickest and most common method to self-induce vomit. It works by simply triggering your gag reflex with your fingers. Just follow these steps:
- Wash your hands and make sure your nails are cut, so you don’t scratch your throat. You’ll want to pull your hair up if you have long hair.
- Find a place to vomit, like a toilet or a bucket. Kneel down in a comfortable position that doesn’t press your abdominal area (your stomach will need space).
- Introduce your index finger inside your mouth and push it towards the back of your throat until you trigger the gag reflex. You’ll probably retch in the way, but you’ll need to reach down until you feel nausea.
- When you feel nausea, quickly pull out your finger.
- If you felt nausea but didn’t throw up, try again.
Watch Other People Throw Up
Watching videos of people vomit can be a very effective way of throwing up. This has probably happened to you or seen it happen to someone else.
When someone vomits, it causes a similar retching reaction in the people around.
This is actually an evolutionary trait. Back in the time of hunter-gatherers, food was usually distributed from the same pot.
Now, let’s suppose your food is rotten but for some reason, you didn’t catch the smell.
However, your friend that is eating the same food did catch it and throws up. You watch it happen, and you follow. The reflex that made you mimic the reaction might save you from staying with spoiled berries in your body.
Besides, vomit is quite disgusting by itself, and unpleasant smells or visuals can stimulate nausea.
You can look for videos of people throwing up on the internet, or even imagine a very disgusting sight. This doesn’t work for everyone, but when it works, it happens instantly.
If you don’t want to use your finger or watch people vomit, you can use emetics. Emetics are medicines designed to help induce vomiting by causing contractions in your stomach.
Since they are made to cause nausea, they can have some side effects like headaches, low blood pressure, and fast heartbeat.
Syrup of ipecac is the most common emetic. There are some concerns about its safety when taken in high doses, so drink it in small amounts.
- Follow the instructions on the bottle. You’ll usually have to dissolve it in water and drink it in a single gulp.
- Drink one or two glasses of water.
- Emetics can take up to half an hour to work. If half an hour has passed and you haven’t vomited, repeat the dose. If it still doesn’t work, contact your doctor.
Do not use emetics if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, if you have a heart condition or in children under one year.
What To Do After Throwing Up
- Just after throwing up, rinse your mouth and do gargles with water to remove leftover stomach acid.
- You’ll have to wait 30 minutes before brushing your teeth since your enamel will be sensitive after having contact with your stomach acid.
- One of the side effects of throwing up is dehydration. To rehydrate yourself, drink small amounts of water once you’ve stopped feeling nauseous.
- To improve your digestion and protect your digestive tract, you can drink herbal teas like ginger, chamomile, fennel, citrus fruits, artichoke and melissa tea.
- After your appetite has been restored, try to eat bland foods, since they’re easier on your stomach. You can try oatmeal, banana, soups, puddings, and yogurt.
- Give your body time to recover. You will lose many nutrients and fluids when you throw up, so it will be a good idea to lay down for a while to let your body heal itself.
Popular Remedies That Don’t Work
There’s a lot of folk wisdom around self-inducing vomit, but it will usually be a waste of time. We suggest you stick to the methods that are known to work without complications, even if you have to say no to your granny. Here we list some of the common myths so you’re alert.
- Eating too much. This will promote the absorption of whatever is in your stomach that you want to get rid of, and most of the time it won’t work at all. You’ll just be left bloated and with discomfort.
- Drinking mustard solution. It goes like this: you mix mustard and warm water in a cup, and you drink it. The disgusting taste and smell are supposed to induce nausea in the same way that other methods do. There is no evidence to prove this method works or that it is safe.
- Bloodroot tea. This tea was used by native Americans for different health purposes. However, its toxic components make it unsafe to use.
To sum it up, self-inducing vomit can help your body’s health in specific situations. These cases can be reduced to eating spoiled food and ingesting non-corrosive poison.
Remember you should always consult your doctor first before throwing up.
In most cases, however, throwing up is not a safe alternative. Throwing up after ingesting corrosive substances like gasoline, shampoo or chemicals will only spread the damage and make things worse.
Throwing up isn’t a way to lose weight by any means. You will only end up hurting yourself.
The best ways to make yourself throw up are using your index finger to trigger your gag reflex, watching videos of people throwing up and taking emetics.