Texas Has High Flu Activity Right Now What Does That Mean For The Rest Of The Country
Dr. Chang: Outpatient numbers of positive flu tests had started increasing a few weeks ago and has significantly ramped up in the last two weeks. This is earlier than typical to see a spike in flu cases. For Texas, we tend to see flu start to increase after the Thanksgiving holidays. It is too early to judge whether the cases are more severe so far though. Its surprising since we have still had warm and/or fall weather, so most people arent thinking about the flu. Even for those planning to get vaccinated, many people havent received their seasonal influenza vaccination yet and so our region may be caught off guard. Unfortunately, many other parts of the country are likely to see their flu cases increase before people were planning to get vaccinated.
Dr. Strange: The influenza virus has been spreading around the United States for approximately a month or so. Texas and New York both have high flu activity likely from large population centers and large number of travelers. Having big states already with high activity likely portends to a very active and contagious flu season.
Peppermint: Home Remedy For Stomach Bug
One of the most widely utilized herbs for bringing relief to all kinds of stomach discomfort, including the stomach flu, is peppermint. The antispasmodic properties of peppermint help to dissipate gas and bloating as well as bring cool, soothing relief to your aches and pains.
What to Do:
- Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 1 tsp of dried peppermint leaves.
- Cover this tea and allow it to steep for 10 minutes before straining out the leaves.
- Drink this tea several times a day between light meals for several days as you are recovering.
Stomach Bug Got You Spending Time On The Toilet Here Are 5 Things You Need To Know
The stomach bug can hit at any time, without any noticeâat least, until you make it to the bathroom and realize thatâs not your normal #2. Diarrhea from the stomach bug can last anywhere from a day to a week. Unless you want to press pause on your busy life to run to the bathroom multiple times a day, youâll need to find a way to get rid of diarrhea from the stomach bug, fast.
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Take Digestive Enzyme Supplements
Certain over-the-counter products may also help with bloating, such as supplemental enzymes that can help break down indigestible carbohydrates.
Notable ones include:
- Lactase: An enzyme that breaks down lactose, which is useful for people with lactose intolerance.
- Beano: Contains the enzyme alpha-galactosidase, which can help break down indigestible carbohydrates from various foods.
In many cases, these types of supplements can provide almost immediate relief.
If youre interested in trying a digestive enzyme supplement, a wide .
Many over-the-counter products can help fight bloating and other digestive problems. These are usually digestive enzymes that help break down certain food components.
How Can I Prevent Viral Gastroenteritis
You can take several steps to keep from getting or spreading infections that cause viral gastroenteritis. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water
- after using the bathroom
- after changing diapers
- before and after handling, preparing, or eating food
You can clean surfaces that may have come into contact with infected stool or vomit, such as countertops and changing tables, with a mixture of 5 to 25 tablespoons of household bleach and 1 gallon of water.7 If clothes or linens may have come into contact with an infected persons stool or vomit, you should wash them with detergent for the longest cycle available and machine dry them. To protect yourself from infection, wear rubber gloves while handling the soiled laundry and wash your hands afterward.7
If you have viral gastroenteritis, avoid handling and preparing food for others while you are sick and for 2 days after your symptoms stop.7 People who have viral gastroenteritis may spread the virus to any food they handle, especially if they do not thoroughly wash their hands. Contaminated water may also spread a virus to foods before they are harvested. For example, contaminated fruits, vegetables, and oysters have been linked to norovirus outbreaks. Wash fruits and vegetables before using them, and thoroughly cook oysters and other shellfish.7Find tips to help keep food safe.
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Other Symptoms That Need Medical Attention
A person should see a doctor if they or someone in their care has the following symptoms:
- confusion or a change in their mental state
- diarrhea lasting more than 2 days
- severe pain in the abdomen or rectum
- very frequent vomiting
, and it is easy for someone to pass on the infection. The virus spreads through contact with small particles of the vomit or feces of a person with the infection. Someone can become infected if they:
- consume food or drink that the virus has contaminated
- touch contaminated surfaces and do not wash their hands
- have direct contact with someone who has the infection, for instance, when caring for them or eating with them
People are most contagious when they have active symptoms, such as vomiting, and for the first few days after they recover. However, 2 weeks after a person recovers from norovirus, the virus will remain in their stool.
People can help prevent the transmission of the virus by regularly and thoroughly washing their hands using soap and water. They should pay particular attention to washing the hands:
- after using the toilet
- after caring for someone who has a stomach bug
- after cleaning up after someone
- before giving medicine
- before eating, preparing, or handling food
People can use alcohol-based sanitizers to clean the hands, but using soap and water for 20 seconds is the most effective way to remove virus particles.
Here are some ways in which people can avoid transmitting a stomach bug:
People can make a bleach solution with
Should You Stay Home With Stomach Flu
Although you typically feel better after a day or two, you’re contagious for a few days after you recover. The virus can remain in your stool for up to two weeks or more after recovery. Children should stay home from school or child care for at least 48 hours after the last time they vomit or have diarrhea.
Bland Foods: Home Remedy For Stomach Bug
As you are working to keep food down after a bout with a stomach bug, consuming bland foods is something to keep in mind among the home remedies for the stomach flu. Bland foods provide the nutrients to help fuel your recovery and tend to be things that you can keep down without stirring up your stomach again.
What to Do:
- Consume small portions of foods like gelatin, chicken breast, rice, lean meats, cooked eggs, and some cooked vegetables and fruits.
- Start with a couple of bites or spoonfuls, wait 20 minutes and try it again, increasing the amount you consume. Work your way up throughout the day as your stomach tolerates the foods.
Let Your Stomach Rest
When you are treating vomiting due to a stomach bug, or gastroenteritis, the first step is to let your stomach rest. After you stop throwing up, dont try to eat or drink anything for 15 to 20 minutes so you can allow your stomach time to recover.
Giving the muscles in your stomach time to rest will lower the chances that you will vomit once you start eating and drinking again.
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Protecting Yourself From Gastroenteritis
The viruses that cause gastroenteritis come from contact with an infected person’s stool. You may get it if a person with the virus didn’t wash their hands after using the bathroom and then touched the escalator at the mall — the same escalator you touched before eating lunch. Stomach flu viruses are tough, too. Some can live on surfaces such as counters for months.
It’s important to take steps to protect yourself and your family. Here’s some advice.
- Wash your hands. According to experts, this is still the best way to stop a stomach virus. One review of studies found that good hand-washing technique cut the rate of diarrhea by 40%. Make sure to use soap and water and do it thoroughly — wash your hands for as long as it takes to recite the alphabet. Always wash your hands after using the bathroom, before eating, and after changing a diaper.
- Use hand sanitizer. If you’re not near a sink to wash your hands, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Be aware that hand sanitizer may not be as effective as hand washing at preventing the stomach flu.
- Wipe down surfaces. If a family member has the stomach flu, wash off high-traffic areas — such as the bathroom, door knobs, phones, and TV remotes — with a diluted bleach solution. If it’s possible, keep healthy people out of the bathroom the sick person is using.
- Make sure your kids get their vaccines.Vaccines for rotavirus can protect children from some types of stomach flu. Kids usually get the vaccines before they are age 2.
Clean And Disinfect Surfaces
After someone vomits or has diarrhea, always thoroughly clean and disinfect the entire area immediately:
- Put on rubber or disposable gloves and wipe the entire area with paper towels, then disinfect the area using a bleach-based household cleaner as directed on the product label.
- Leave the bleach disinfectant on the affected area for at least five minutes, then clean the entire area again with soap and hot water. Finish by cleaning soiled laundry, taking out the trash, and washing your hands.
To help make sure that food is safe from norovirus, routinely clean and sanitize kitchen utensils, counters, and surfaces before preparing food.
You should use a chlorine bleach solution with a concentration of 1,000 to 5,000 ppm or other disinfectant registered as effective against norovirus by the Environmental Protection Agency . For more information, see EPAs Registered Antimicrobial Products Effective Against Norovirus .
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What Is The Best Remedy For The Stomach Flu
The stomach flu can be brutal when it hits. It can’t be treated with medication. You can only take something for the symptoms.
Here are some tips to make it go a little smoother:
Drink a lot of fluids. You are putting out a lot more than usual and you have to replace that. You also have to replace the electrolytes you lose through vomiting and diarrhea. Clear liquids are best. You can drink sports drinks, Pedialyte, and tea with ginger or peppermint. Try to avoid caffeine and alcohol.
Eat the BRAT diet. If you can keep food down, eat bananas, rice, applesauce and toast. These are easy to digest and have carbs to give you energy. Avoid dairy, fibrous foods, fatty and spicy foods.
Acupressure. There is a spot on your wrist that is said to reduce nausea if pressed.
Get a lot of rest. Let your body fight off the bug that is attacking it. If you aren’t sleeping, relax on the couch.
To treat the symptoms: you can take ibuprofen or Tylenol for fever and aches. For diarrhea, you can take Imodium or Pepto-Bismol. You can ask your doctor for an anti-nausea such as promethazine or prochlorperazine.
How To Avoid Stomach Flu With Lemon
The reason why lemons are often made use of in cleaning solutions is that they have a cleansing effect. That cleansing, along with the vitamin C found in lemons, is antimicrobial for killing off pathogens and giving your immune system a boost.
What to Do:
- Extract the juice of a fresh lemon and add 2 tsp of this juice to a glass of warm or even hot water.
- Add a dab of honey, if you will, and drink this mixture 2 to 3 times daily until you reach full recovery.
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How To Prevent Stomach Flu
- Drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.
- Get your child vaccinated against rotavirus.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before eating and after using the loo.
- Do not share personal utensils with an infected person until he/she recovers.
- Avoid drinking chilled water.
- Do not consume raw meat or raw foods like sushi.
- Disinfect all the hard surfaces at your home if any of your family members have gastroenteritis.
- Avoid sending your child to the daycare centre until they recover completely to prevent the infection from spreading.
- Get ample rest and sleep well.
As already discussed, there is no specific medical treatment for gastroenteritis. Rest and hydration, coupled with the remedies mentioned above, can help in speeding up your recovery from gastroenteritis without any further complications.
Infants and older adults who have stomach flu should be given extra care as this infection can prove to be life-threatening, given their compromised immunity.
Contact a doctor immediately if your symptoms worsen, or you develop a high fever , are unable to keep liquids down for more than 24 hours or exhibit signs of dehydration, vomit blood, or have bloody diarrhea.
When To See A Healthcare Provider
Stomach cramps are common and generally harmless, but there are times when your symptoms warrant medical attention.
- Cramps that last a week or longer
- Pain that lasts longer than 24 hours, is increasingly severe, or is accompanied by nausea and/or vomiting
- Bloating for more than two days
- Burning sensation when you pee and/or frequent urination
- Diarrhea that lasts for five days or more
- Fever over 100 degrees Fahrenheit
- Persistent lack of appetite
- Are being treated for cancer
- Cannot pass stool, especially if you are also throwing up
- Are vomiting blood or have bloody stools
- Have chest, neck, or shoulder pain
- Have sudden, sharp stomach pain
- Have pain in between your shoulder blades
- Notice your belly is hard or tender
- Are pregnant or may be pregnant
- Have recently been injured in your abdomen
- Have trouble breathing
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Remedies For Little Ones
As terrible as it is to get the stomach flu yourself, it is even harder to watch your child go through it. If your infants symptoms havent subsided in a day or two, take them to the doctor.
Their doctor can make sure your child is on their way to recovery without any complications. They can also check to make sure there are no other causes for their symptoms.
Encouraging children to continue to take sips of water to replace lost fluids is important to prevent dehydration. All infants and toddlers can also drink an electrolyte solution like Pedialyte.
What Is The Difference Between Stomach Flu And Gastroenteritis
Gastroenteritis is commonly called stomach flu. But it’s actually not caused by influenza, the respiratory virus that causes flu. Different stomach bugs are usually to blame for symptoms like diarrhea, stomach pain and feeling sick to your stomach.
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Does Lemon Water Help With Bloating
As a bonus, lemon juice helps to loosen the toxins floating around in your GI tract, relieve the painful symptoms that accompany indigestion, and even reduce the risk of burping and bloating resulting from excess gas production in your gut. Lemon water can keep your digestive system purring like a kitty all day long.
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Is This Years Flu Shot A Good Match To The Strains That Are Spreading
Dr. Johnson: This years flu shot composition does include protection for an influenza A H3N2 strain, as well as an influenza A H1N1 strain and two types of influenza B. The decision to include this H3N2 strain was based on the fact that this one matched the strain that circulated predominantly in the US during last years flu season.
Dr. Hassig: So far it appears the current flu shot is matching well to the circulating virus in the US, but uptake of the flu vaccine is still lower than we would like to see, especially in older populations. Vaccine uptake this year is important because the dominant flu strain appears to be one that tends to cause more severe disease, and in the past has been responsible for the higher death rates we see in some flu seasons.
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Do I Have Stomach Flu Or Food Poisoning
Onset of symptoms The stomach flu typically has about a 24 to 48 hour incubation period in your system and then starts causing symptoms. In contrast, food poisoning comes on quickly typically about two to six hours after you’ve eaten spoiled food.
Why Older Adults Need Stronger Flu Shots
Dr. Barbara Bawer, a family medicine physician at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, tells Healthline adults ages 65 and older need a higher dose of the flu vaccine because with age the immune system often weakens and does not build up enough of a response to the regular vaccine dose.
Dr. Phillip Kadaj, a Michigan-based internal medicine physician and medical expert for JustAnswer, explains that antigens are the immune system activating substances in the flu vaccine.
Bawer adds that if youre over 65, getting a stronger dose of the flu shot is now whats required to protect against contracting the flu and reduce the likelihood of becoming severely ill from the flu and requiring hospitalization.
These assertions are backed up by a
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