Both pleasant and unpleasant smells can trigger sickness. You might find that it helps to remove strong smelling flowers from around you. Or, you could ask friends and relatives not to wear perfume.
Try eating cold foods if the smell of food makes you feel sick. Or get someone else to cook for you if you can.
The taste of some foods and drinks may make you feel or be sick. Strong tastes may be troublesome. You might find it helps to stick to bland foods. Your taste could be affected if sickness is related to your treatment. This usually gets better after treatment has finished.
Some people avoid their favourite foods and drinks during treatment periods in case they are put off them for good. Other people find that they start to like foods they have always disliked.
These feelings are very common in people with cancer. Up to 1 in 4 people (up to 25%) with cancer become depressed.
Feeling very frightened, anxious or depressed can affect the way your body works and may make you feel or be sick. Discuss your feelings with your doctor or specialist nurse as they can help you with your anxiety or depression.
Being in a lot of pain can also make you feel or be sick. The sickness will go away when you treat the pain.
Motion sickness (travel sickness) happens when the messages your brain receives from your eyes do not match those from the balance centre in your ear.
This confusion can trigger the vomiting centre in your brain and make you feel or be sick. It often helps to face forward in the vehicle and look out of the window at a fixed point on the horizon.
You can get drugs to prevent motion sickness on prescription from your GP and over the counter from the chemist.
An infection can make you feel or be sick. The sickness will usually stop when the infection is treated.
Infections picked up from food (food poisoning) usually last between 24 and 48 hours (1 to 2 full days). It is important to see your doctor if your sickness lasts for longer.
Many of us have had that feeling of being so hungry you feel sick. Try to avoid this by eating small meals at regular times and by drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water each day.
Both constipation and diarrhoea can make you feel or be sick. Treating the cause will reduce the sickness.
Little is known about the long-term consequences of sickness presence (ie, going to work despite ill-health), although one study suggests an association with coronary heart disease. This study examined the effect of sickness presence on future long-term sickness absence.
Sickness presence is associated with long-term sickness absence of at least 2 weeks' duration as well as with spells lasting at least 2 months. Participants who had gone to work ill more than six times in the year prior to baseline had a 74% higher risk of becoming sick-listed for more than 2 months, even when controlling for a wide range of potential confounders as well as baseline health status and previous long-term sickness absence. The association was consistent for most subgroups of employees reporting various symptoms, but either disappeared or became insignificant when analysing subgroups of employees with specific chronic diseases.
A person with anxiety may feel nauseous, or they may find that they get sick more often because their anxiety weakens their immune responses.
Other symptoms of anxiety include:
Experiencing stress here and there is completely normal, but continual stress can greatly impact the mind and body.
Extreme stress, such as that caused by grief, shock, or traumatic experiences can also affect people physically.
People with chronic or extreme stress can have many different symptoms, as stress affects the immune system, nervous system, hormones, and heart functioning.
Other symptoms of chronic stress can include:
Proper, regular sleep is important for mental and physical health. When someone is chronically sleep-deprived, they may feel sick all the time.
Many chronic medical conditions can interfere with sleep, usually intensifying the symptoms of both conditions.
Common symptoms of chronic sleep deprivation, or a lack of adequate sleep, include:
Dehydration and malnutrition, or having a poor diet, both put stress on the body. A chronic lack of proper nutrients and hydration can cause many problems, including:
Poor physical hygiene, especially oral, can cause a variety of symptoms that could make someone feel sick all of the time. Poor hygiene makes it easier for bacteria to grow and thrive, which can result in infection.
The skin is the body's natural barrier to things that can cause infection, such as bacteria and viruses.
Washing the body, and keeping clothes and bedding clean can help to keep bacteria out, and keep natural, healthy bacterial communities in check.
People have a lot of blood vessels in their gums. This blood supply means that chronic, untreated gum infections can spread through the body. Severe gum disease has also been linked to several medical conditions.
Alcohol, caffeine, recreational drugs, and many prescription medications are known to interfere with sleep, which can lead to a general feeling of being unwell.
An overuse, or long-term use, of chemicals that act as stimulants or depressants, can cause certain mental and physical changes
Autoimmune conditions weaken the immune system and make it easier to develop infections, colds, and flu. This means that people with chronic immune conditions tend to feel sick more often and may take longer to recover from illnesses.
Common immune conditions that can make people feel sick all the time include:
Autoimmune conditions cause many symptoms, including fatigue, rashes, insomnia, and gastrointestinal problems.
When headache plus one other symptom occur within 24 to 48 hours of changing elevation, sickness should be considered. Most experienced climbers recognize the symptoms in people who are experiencing mild to moderate sickness.
In cases of severe sickness, a doctor will make the diagnosis based on signs, symptoms and the situation (the person was at a high altitude). The doctor may listen to the chest with a stethoscope or take a chest X-ray to determine whether there is any fluid in the chest. In the most severe cases, a doctor may order a brain MRI or CT scan to check for fluid in the brain.
Anxiety and anxiety disorders are very treatable. Possible options include:
The only definite way to treat chronic stress is to address and change the underlying cause. However, several lifestyle habits can greatly reduce stress and its symptoms.
Many traditional and alternative therapies exist to help manage or alleviate stress.
Good ways for someone to treat their stress include:
Common ways to improve sleep deprivation include:
Recommendations for daily water intake differ, depending on a person's age, sex, pregnancy status, and illness. It is often said that most people should drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water daily.
If a person suspects they are dehydrated, they should visit their doctor to find out the best treatments.
To treat and prevent malnutrition, people should eat a healthy, balanced diet rich in foods, including:
Regular washing of the body, clothes, and bedding should help treat and prevent most infections related to poor hygiene. And practicing oral hygiene habits can help treat, and greatly reduce the likelihood of developing gum infections and disease.
Good oral hygiene habits include:
A person should avoid drinks, foods, and drugs with these chemicals in them, especially in the evening or before bedtime. It is important to remember that caffeine and sugar can have a strong effect on how a person feels.
When someone's symptoms are caused by prescription medication, they should speak to their doctor to find an alternative.
The only way to treat symptoms related to an autoimmune condition is to seek medical treatment and monitoring for the condition.
Avoid close contact.
Avoid close contact with people who are sick. When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
Germs are often spread when a person touches something that is contaminated with germs and then touches his or her eyes, nose, or mouth.
Practice other good health habits.
Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill. Get plenty of sleep, be physically active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.