nau·​sea | \ ˈnȯ-zē-ə How to pronounce nausea (audio) , -sē-ə How to pronounce nausea (audio) ; ˈnȯ-zhə How to pronounce nausea (audio) , -shə How to pronounce nausea (audio) \

Definition of nausea

1 : a stomach distress with distaste for food and an urge to vomit experienced nausea during the cruise to Bermuda
2 : extreme disgust looked at the murder scene with growing nausea

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from nausea

nauseant \ ˈnȯ-​zhē-​ənt How to pronounce nausea (audio) , -​shē-​ , -​zē-​ , -​sē-​ \ noun or adjective

Frequently Asked Questions About nausea

Is one nauseous or nauseated?

Some usage guides have held that there should be a strict distinction between nauseous and nauseated, with the first word meaning "causing nausea or disgust" and the second one meaning "affected with nausea." However, nauseous has been in widespread enough use for both of these senses that this distinction is now quite blurred. Nauseous may mean either "causing nausea" or "affected with nausea"; nauseated, on the other hand, is restricted in meaning to "affected with nausea; feeling disgust."

What is the verb for nauseous?

The verb form of nauseous is nauseate, meaning "to affect with nausea or disgust." It comes from the Latin word meaning "seasickness, nausea," which itself may be traced back to the Greek word for "sailor" (nautēs).

"Is nausea a noun?"

Nausea is a noun, meaning "a stomach distress with distaste for food and an urge to vomit" or "extreme disgust." A number of other nouns are closely related in meaning, including nauseant ("something that causes nausea"), nauseousness ("an instance of nausea"), and nauseatingness ("the quality or state of being nauseating").

Examples of nausea in a Sentence

Some people experience nausea when flying. A feeling of nausea suddenly came over me.
Recent Examples on the Web Doctors could recommend the products for a wide range of symptoms and conditions, including chronic pain, nausea and weight loss from cancer, Parkinson’s, Crohn’s, PTSD, HIV/AIDS, sickle cell, autism, Tourette’s Syndrome, and terminal illnesses. Mike Cason |, al, "Alabama House passes medical marijuana bill," 6 May 2021 Although healthy individuals may suffer only short-term symptoms such as high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea, Listeria infection can cause miscarriages and stillbirths among pregnant women. Yoni Heisler, BGR, "If you bought this popular food item, you’ll want to throw it away now," 28 Apr. 2021 After receiving the Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, or Johnson & Johnson vaccines, many people feel relief — and many also experience some temporary side effects, including nausea, muscle pain, and headaches. Lydia Wang,, "Why Are People Experiencing Unusual Period Symptoms After Getting Vaccinated?," 11 Apr. 2021 Reports of pain rose from 67.7% to 74.8%; fatigue from 28.6% to 50%; headache from 25.6% to 41.9%; chills from 7% to 26.7%; fever from 7.4% to 25.2%; joint pain from 7.1% to 21.2%; and nausea from 7% to 13.9%. Mark Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "That second shot of COVID-19 vaccine can cause a headache and then some, but it works," 6 Apr. 2021 Some Tribune readers reported experiencing fever, chills, joint pain, nausea or swelling — all side effects reported at 7% in the CDC study. Sean P. Means, The Salt Lake Tribune, "Here are the side effects these Utahns felt after their first shots of COVID-19 vaccine," 19 Mar. 2021 Other common symptoms of a coronavirus infection include fever, chills, shortness of breath, cough, headache, sore throat, congestion, fatigue, diarrhea, and nausea. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Ellen DeGeneres Has One ‘Excruciating’ COVID-19 Symptom," 17 Dec. 2020 People with listeria infections tend to have fever, muscle aches, diarrhea, and nausea. Sara Chodosh, Popular Science, "Everything you need to know about deadly listeria outbreaks," 26 Oct. 2020 Symptoms generally began at least six days following administration of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, usually with headaches, chills, fever, nausea, weakness and stomach pain. NBC News, "FDA, CDC lift pause on J&J Covid vaccinations," 24 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'nausea.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of nausea

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for nausea

Latin, seasickness, nausea, from Greek nautia, nausia, from nautēs sailor — more at nautical

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about nausea

Time Traveler for nausea

Time Traveler

The first known use of nausea was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for nausea

Last Updated

12 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Nausea.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for nausea



English Language Learners Definition of nausea

: the feeling you have in your stomach when you think you are going to vomit


nau·​sea | \ ˈnȯ-zē-ə How to pronounce nausea (audio) , ˈnȯ-shə \

Kids Definition of nausea

1 : a disturbed and unpleasant condition of the stomach : the feeling of being about to vomit
2 : deep disgust : loathing


nau·​sea | \ ˈnȯ-zē-ə How to pronounce nausea (audio) , -sē-ə; ˈnȯ-zhə How to pronounce nausea (audio) , -shə How to pronounce nausea (audio) \

Medical Definition of nausea

: a stomach distress with distaste for food and an urge to vomit

Comments on nausea

What made you want to look up nausea? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!


Anagram puzzles meet word search.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!