Vomiting in children over one year

Children over one year old can be vomited for several reasons. The most common is that the child has a stomach illness. Children may also vomit if they have a cold, cough, pneumonia, food allergy or gastroesophageal reflux.

This text is about vomiting in children older than one year. Vomiting in children under one year may have other causes.

The vomiting may look different, depending on the cause. The child may also have symptoms other than vomiting, for example, they may have a fever, stomach ache or be tired.

When and where should I seek care?

If you are going to seek care depends on how the child is feeling otherwise, how much and how long the child has vomited, and whether the child gets any fluid.

Contact a health care center or call 911 for medical advice if the child is vomiting and at the same time has one or more of the following symptoms or symptoms:

  • The child has a chronic illness and you are not sure if they need care.
  • The baby has been operated on in the gastrointestinal tract or in the ear-nose-throat area.
  • The child uses drugs, such as antibiotics.
  • The vomiting has not diminished within a day.
  • The vomiting comes back in periods.
  • The vomiting comes in connection with a certain type of food.

The risk of fluid deficiency increases if the child cannot retain any fluid at all. It can cause them to become dehydrated, which is a serious condition. The younger the child, the greater the risk of fluid dehydration and dehydration.

If the child is vomiting and immediately have one or more of the following symptoms, contact a health care center or an on-call hospital immediately.

  • The child must not retain any fluid and kisses much less than usual.
  • The child has a fever or is tired, unable to play or be interested in the surroundings.
  • The baby has a lot of stomach ache and it does not go over or get worse.
  • There is blood in the vomiting or in the poop.
  • The child has diabetes, the vomiting may then be a sign of ketoacidosis.
  • The child is kissing large quantities and is very thirsty.

If it is closed at the health center or on-call reception, seek care at an emergency room.

Call 911 and ask to be connected to the Poison Center if you suspect the child has eaten something poisonous. Feel free to have what you think the child has eaten in front of you when you call.

Why does the baby vomit?

Children can be vomited for many different reasons. Therefore, it also differs from what you can do yourself and how the vomiting is treated. Here are the most common causes for children over a year old to vomit:

  • stomachflu
  • other infections
  • poisoning and food poisoning
  • diseases of the esophagus and stomach
  • constipation
  • food allergies
  • cyclic vomiting
  • appendicitis or stomach upset
  • type 1 diabetes
  • migraine
  • concussion
  • meningitis
  • brain tumor.


The most common reason why a child over a year is vomiting is because they have a stomach ailment. The vomiting often comes quickly and the child may feel tired, have a fever and feel ill. After about a day, the child may have diarrhea.

Stomach disease is usually due to a viral infection, but can also sometimes be caused by bacteria or parasites.

Try to get fluid in the baby from the first vomiting. This reduces the risk of the child getting fluid deficiency and becoming dehydrated. The best thing is to give the child fluid replacement.

Wash your hands regularly if the child has an infection. Washing your hands is effective in removing both viruses and bacteria.

Other infections

Children may be vomited in various types of infections. It is more common for children under the age of six to suffer from an infection than children over six years do. Often the child has other symptoms, such as cough, fever and being tired and uninterested in the surroundings.

Here are examples of infections that can cause the baby to vomit:

  • cold
  • respiratory tract infections with cough
  • tonsillitis
  • pneumonia
  • otitis
  • urinary infection
  • meningitis.

Poisoning and food poisoning

Children can vomit and feel ill during food poisoning or from eating a toxic substance or drug.

Food poisoning can occur if the child eats food containing poison from common bacteria. Such poison can be formed if the food is not cooked or taken care of properly, as bacteria can then grow and form poison.

Diseases of the esophagus and stomach

Stomach contents can come up in the esophagus if the upper stomach does not close completely. It is called gastroesophageal reflux.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease is when the child gets symptoms of reflux, for example, the child vomits or gets a chest pain. The child may then need treatment.

It is unusual for a child to have a stomach ulcer, but a symptom may be that the child is vomiting.

Vomiting and having difficulty swallowing can be signs of a disease called acalassia. It is a rare disease in the esophagus and in the upper part of the stomach that makes the child difficult to swallow.


A child who is constipated for an extended period of time can lose the appetite, feel ill and even vomit. Another symptom of constipation is that the child gets loose poop in the underwear. This is because loose poop flows past the hard lump of poop found in the rectum.

Food allergy

Vomiting can be a sign that the child is allergic to some food in the food. Sometimes the baby also gets a stomach ache or it itches in the mouth and throat.

For example, the child may have cow’s milk allergy or not tolerate the protein gluten, so-called celiac disease. Another name for celiac disease is gluten intolerance.

Cyclic vomiting

A fairly rare cause of vomiting in children over five years is so-called cyclic vomiting. Most often the periods come every few months.

The vomiting occurs suddenly, without the child having a fever or showing any signs of feeling bad before. The child is usually very tired and unable to play. The course of events looks the same at every moment.

The child may need to be hospitalized for one or a couple of days to get fluid and treatment for nausea, usually directly into the blood via drip. The nausea and vomiting end within a few days, often faster than that.

Cyclic vomiting is also called periodic vomiting.

Appendicitis or stomach upset

The sign of appendicitis is that the child has stomach ache. They can also have a fever and can sometimes vomit.

If the baby is vomiting yellow-colored vomiting and has a proper stomach ache, they may have a bowel obstruction. Then the child can neither poop or haggle.

Obstacles in the gut may be due to the child having any of the following:

  • volvulus
  • squeezed groin
  • intussusception.

The child has an increased risk of getting obstructions in the gut if they have been operated on in the gastrointestinal tract.

Type 1 diabetes

Signs of type 1 diabetes may be, among other things, that the child is feeling sick and vomiting. Usually, the child is also very tired and very thirsty, and often needs to pee.

If the child has already been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes

Vomiting may be a sign that the child has ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis can occur if the child has high blood sugar levels due to them not getting enough insulin.


The child may vomit if they have migraines. Other symptoms of migraine are that the child gets a headache and wants peace and quiet in a dark and quiet room.


The vomiting may be due to a concussion if the child is vomited after being hit in the head. Other symptoms of concussion are that the child is tired and unable to play. Sometimes the vomiting may occur several hours after the baby has struck his head.


A meningitis can cause the baby to vomit. Other signs are that the child has a fever, is stiff in the neck and is sometimes sensitive to light and sound.

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