Gastroenteritis is a bowel infection that causes diarrhoea and sometimes vomiting. Diarrhoea is runny, watery bowel motions. The vomiting may settle quickly, but the diarrhoea may last up to 10 days. Bouts of gastro can cause dehydration, which can be dangerous for very young babies.
What is good for a stomach virus?
It is important to keep up fluid levels in the body to help avoid dehydration. People with stomach flu should drink plenty of liquids such as clear soda, clear broths, or caffeine-free sports drinks. Slow sips help to keep fluids down. People who can't keep food or drink down can snack on ice chips to keep hydrated.
Is a stomach virus contagious to babies?
Viral gastroenteritis is very contagious. Your baby may have eaten something contaminated with the virus or shared a cup or utensils with someone who has the virus. (It's possible to have the virus without showing symptoms.)
How Long Will Stomach Flu Last? Depending on the virus and your child's immune system, the stomach flu can last anywhere from just a day or two to around 10 days. "Children tend to throw up for just the first day or two, but diarrhea can last more than a week," says Dr. Nelson.
Key points to remember
- gastroenteritis is a bowel infection causing diarrhoea, and sometimes vomiting.
- diarrhoea means runny, watery poo.
- children need to drink plenty of fluids if they have gastro.
- give small amounts of fluid often.
- gastro can cause dehydration, especially in babies and young children.
Better Bet Avoid sugary liquids like fruit juice, which can aggravate your child's stomach symptoms. If he asks to drink something other than water, try an electrolyte drink such as Gatorade or Propel. Milk may be okay, but start with small amounts and see if his diarrhea gets worse after he drinks it.
The stomach flu can't be cured by medications, and antibiotics won't help when a virus is the culprit. You can take over-the-counter medication to treat the symptoms but do so sparingly. For fever or aches, ibuprofen can help, as long as it doesn't cause you to have more of an upset stomach.
Depending on the cause, viral gastroenteritis symptoms may appear within one to three days after you're infected and can range from mild to severe. Symptoms usually last just a day or two, but occasionally they may persist as long as 10 days.
Incubation period of gastroenteritis viruses (not rotavirus) The incubation period is usually 24–48 hours. The known range for norovirus is 18–72 hours.
When you are sick your body makes antibodies to the virus that are then passed to your baby through your breast milk. So not only can you breastfeed even if you are sick, it's the best thing you can do since your baby has already been exposed to your illness before you even show symptoms in most cases.
Otherwise, gradually begin to eat bland, easy-to-digest foods, such as soda crackers, toast, gelatin, bananas, rice and chicken. Stop eating if your nausea returns. Avoid milk and dairy products, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and fatty or highly seasoned foods for a few days.
You can be contagious from a few days up to two weeks or more, depending on which virus is causing your stomach flu (gastroenteritis). The contagious period — the time during which a sick person can give the illness to others — differs slightly for each virus. Norovirus.
During any “ordinary” illness such as a cold, sore throat, flu, tummy bug, fever, mastitis, etc. you should continue to breastfeed. As long as the symptoms are confined to the gastrointestinal tract (vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps), breastfeeding should continue without interruption as there is no risk to the baby.
An infected person may spread the bacteria to food or surfaces if they don't wash their hands after going to the toilet. Viral gastroenteritis – infection is caused by person-to-person contact such as touching contaminated hands, faeces or vomit, or by drinking contaminated water or food.
Bananas – Rice – Applesauce – Toast. The foods that make up the B.R.A.T diet are those foods that will help cause the bulking and hardening of the stool. These foods include grains, and certain fruits. Below are more foods that will help firm-up and bind baby's stools when diarrhea occurs.
Do not drink citrus juices or milk. Increase fluids as tolerated. When you can tolerate clear liquids for several hours without vomiting and if you're hungry, try eating small amounts of bland foods. Try foods such as bananas, rice, applesauce, dry toast, soda crackers (these foods are called BRAT diet).
To help keep yourself more comfortable and prevent dehydration while you recover, try the following:
- Let your stomach settle.
- Try sucking on ice chips or taking small sips of water.
- Ease back into eating.
- Avoid certain foods and substances until you feel better.
- Get plenty of rest.
- Be cautious with medications.
Can I catch viral gastroenteritis from someone? Yes, viral gastroenteritis is contagious. It is spread through close contact with infected persons (for example, by sharing food, water, or eating utensils) or by touching surfaces contaminated by an infected person and then touching one's mouth.
It's extremely contagious. Stomach flu spreads via the "fecal-oral route," which is just as gross as it sounds. Basically, viruses from infected feces or vomit find their way into our mouths. Very diligent hand washing is your best defense, according to Dr. Rogg.
Selected Oral Antibiotics for Infectious Gastroenteritis a
|Clostridium difficile||Metronidazole||250 mg po qid or 500 mg po tid for 10 days|
|Vancomycin||125–250 mg po qid for 10 days|
|Fidaxomicin||200 mg po bid for 10 days|
|Entamoeba histolytica||Metronidazole f||500–750 mg po tid for 7–10 days|
For example, most common cause of stomach flu is Norovirus. It has an incubation period of about 12 - 48 hours, and can cause the person to be contagious during the incubation period and for as long as they shed virus (usually about three days after symptoms stop but sometimes up to two weeks).
Acute gastritis is a sudden inflammation or swelling in the lining of the stomach. Gastritis is a separate condition from gastroenteritis. Gastritis only directly affects the stomach and may include nausea or vomiting, while gastroenteritis affects both the stomach and the intestines.