Nausea relief - using the power of the ‘placebo effect’
The constant feeling of nausea is one of the most unpleasant conditions you can suffer - the world closes in and you feel (and often look) like you want to dig a hole and curl up in it. The causes of nausea are numerous, from food poisoning to pregnancy; from motion sickness to kidney stones.
Ways of coping with nausea include: accepting that you feel ill. Not going out to school/work. Sip drinks. Settling the stomach with clear, fizzy drinks. Avoiding too much water which can irritate the stomach and increase feelings of nausea. Relaxing, lying down with distractions e.g. listening to the radio or watching TV, or trying to sleep. Eating something, bland foods such as crackers, bananas, toast, soup, etc. Eating six to eight small meals a day, rather than 3 large ones. Relax for half an hour after eating but delay lying down for an hour or so. Try a placebo pillule, place under the tongue and let it dissolve. If symptom persist ask your doctor about anti-nausea medication.
Placebo treatment for pregnant women
An extraordinary double-blind medical trial carried out In 1959 by Dr Stewart Wolf on pregnant women suffering from nausea and vomiting demostrated some surprising results. Half of the women were prescribed traditional medicine that reduced the nausea and vomiting. The other half were given a placebo treatment. Both sets of patients demonstrated significantly reduced nausea.
In a development of the study a group of patients were given a “new, strong, very effective, anti-sickness” medication. In fact this time the placebo group received Ipecac - an extremely potent drug used to induce vomiting in cases of food poisoning. Surprisingly women continued to experience relief from vomiting - reversing the effect of one of the most powerful nausea-creating drugs that exists!http://pharmrev.aspetjournals.org/content/11/4/689.full.pdf+html
Acupuncture compared with placebo acupuncture
In Sweden cancer patients receiving radio-therapy were dived into two groups. 109 patients were treated with acupuncture and a further 106 were given sham acupuncture or non-penetrating needles two to three times per week with the aim of relieving their nausea. The patients documented their vomiting daily during the radiotherapy period.
The groups reported bouts of nausea during the radio-therapy, however the effectiveness of the treatments could not be split with 67% in both groups reporting that they experienced positive effects on relaxation, mood, sleep or pain reduction. Furthermore 89% wished to receive the treatment again.Enblom A Johnsson A Hammar M Onelöv E Steineck G Börjeson S
Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden