What Is Viral Gastroenteritis
Viral gastroenteritis is an infection of your intestines that typically causes watery diarrhea, pain or cramping in your abdomen, nausea or vomiting, and sometimes fever.
Viral gastroenteritis is caused by viruses. Viruses invade normal cells in your body. Many viruses cause infections that can be spread from person to person.
People commonly call viral gastroenteritis stomach flu, but the term is not medically correct. Viral gastroenteritis is an infection of the intestines, not the stomach, and it is not caused by influenza viruses. The flu vaccine does not protect against viral gastroenteritis.
Viral gastroenteritis is acute, meaning it happens suddenly and lasts a short time. Most cases of viral gastroenteritis last less than a week, and most people get better on their own without medical treatment. In some cases, viral gastroenteritis may cause severe symptoms or may lead to dehydration.
Diagnosis Of Stomach Flu
Most people are infected with a virus that causes gastroenteritis, since they’re very contagious and spread easily. It doesn’t always warrant a trip to your healthcare provider’s office, but if it does, your appointment will include:
- A review of your symptoms
- Medical history
- Physical examination
- Recent whereabouts, as you’re more likely to contract the illness in crowded places like daycares or cruise ships
Testing may not be done unless there’s a reason to find out the strain of the virus, like a viral outbreak in a hospital setting.
If needed, stool tests can be used to diagnose rotavirus , but this isnt routine.Blood tests or imaging tests would only be performed if another disease or condition is suspected.
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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Surviving The Stomach Flu
Fever. Nausea. Vomiting. Diarrhea. If this sounds like you, you could have the stomach flu or gastroenteritis. The stomach flu is the second most common illness in the United States, but isnt actually associated with influenza at all.
The stomach flu is usually caused by a virus, which means it cant be treated by medications. Unfortunately, the only thing that will cure the stomach flu is time, but there a few steps you can take to treat the stomach flu and aid the recovery process.
Do I Need To Go To The Emergency Room If I Am Only A Little Sick
No. The emergency room should be used for people who are very sick. You should not go to the emergency room if you are only mildly ill.
If you have emergency warning signs of flu sickness, you should go to the emergency room. If you get sick with flu symptoms and are at higher risk of flu complications or you are concerned about your illness, call your health care provider for advice.
People experiencing any of these warning signs should obtain medical care right away.
- Fast breathing or trouble breathing
- Bluish lips or face
- Ribs pulling in with each breath
- Chest pain
- Severe muscle pain
- Not alert or interacting when awake
- In children less than 12 weeks, any fever
- Fever or cough that improve but then return or worsen
- Worsening of chronic medical conditions
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest or abdomen
- Persistent dizziness, confusion, inability to arouse
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Causes Of Stomach Flu
The stomach flu is an infection that attacks your intestines. Its most often caused by viruses like norovirus in adults or rotavirus in children. But it can also be triggered by other viruses, bacteria, parasites, or toxins.
While other illnesses are transmitted through the air, the stomach flu is transmitted via:
- Contaminated food or drink
- Touching a surface that’s been infected
- Person-to-person contact with someone who has the infection
- Contact with the vomit or stools of someone who has the infection
Dry Cereal Crackers And Pretzels
To avoid triggering nausea and vomiting during the stomach flu, dry foods like cereal, plain crackers, and pretzels are safe options .
Since theyre free of spices, low in fat, and low in fiber, theyre gentle on your tummy.
Theyre also made up of simple carbs, which are quickly and easily digested .
Whats more, these refined grains are often fortified with essential vitamins and minerals, which may help you get closer to meeting your daily nutrient needs while ill .
Dry cereal, crackers, and pretzels may be better tolerated during the stomach flu, as theyre easy to digest, free of spices and low in fat and fiber.
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When To Call Your Doctor
Food poisoning and viral gastroenteritis can become severe enough to require medical attention. However, Dr. Thomas says, in most cases, people can effectively manage either condition with proper rest, hydration and at-home medical treatment. But call your doctor if youre unsure whats causing your symptoms or if youre having high or persistent fevers.
Also keep in mind that other health issues can mimic the symptoms of viral gastroenteritis or food poisoning. Call your doctor if your symptoms worsen or if you experience any of the following:
- Bloody stool or bloody vomit
- Inability to keep any fluids down
- Diarrhea lasting more than three days
- Fever above 104 degrees
- Severe abdominal pain
What Is The Stomach Bug Or Stomach Flu
Simply put, the stomach bug or stomach flu is a bacterial infection that happens in your intestines. This viral infection is incredibly contagious and if you or someone you know has the stomach bug, chances are someone in that inner circle well like they get it soon just as well.
The stomach flu is often referred to by many names and is often identified as the stomach flu. The reason for this is the fact that the symptoms you can expect to experience are very similar to the traditional flu.
When it comes to the symptoms of the stomach bug, you can expect to find everything from watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, body aches, and vomiting. Temporary feelings of nauseous throughout the day may be present but some people will not ever actually feel it.
Others who have the stomach flu may experience bowel movements in the form of watery diarrhea. Typically speaking, if you are dealing with a stomach bug then chances are your stomach will feel queasy, uneasy, and just simply sour.
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When To Get Help For The Flu
Most people recover from the flu, but it is important to remember it can be a deadly infection. Since 2010, an estimated 12,000 to 61,000 people per year in the U.S. have died from influenza and its complications, such as pneumonia, infections of the heart or brain, severe muscle damage , and organ failure, according to the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control. Get medical attention immediately if you have the flu with:
- Difficulty breathing.
Flu: What To Do If You Get Sick
Influenza can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. Flu is different from a cold. Flu usually comes on suddenly. People who have flu often feel some or all of these symptoms:
- fever* or feeling feverish/chills
- some people may have vomiting and diarrhea, though this is more common in children than adults.
*Its important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever.
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How Long Does A Stomach Virus Last
Depending on the type of stomach virus you are infected with, symptoms may appear 1 to 3 days after you are exposed to the virus. Symptoms of a stomach virus vary from mild to severe and can last anywhere from 1 to 10 days.
Stomach viruses are not the same as bacterial infections. It is important not to confuse diarrhea that is caused by a virus from diarrhea that is caused by bacteria. Diarrhea can be caused by the following types of bacteria:
- Clostridium difficile
- E. coli
- Parasites such as Giardia
Most stomach viruses last 2 to 10 days and can vary in severity and symptoms. Types of viruses that cause stomach viruses include:
What To Do If You Have Norovirus
If you experience sudden diarrhoea and/or vomiting, the best thing to do is to stay at home until you’re feeling better.
There’s no treatment for norovirus, so you have to let it run its course.
You don’t usually need to get medical advice unless there’s a risk of a more serious problem.
To help ease your own or your childs symptoms drink plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration.
You need to drink more than usual to replace the fluids lost from vomiting and diarrhoea as well as water, adults could also try fruit juice and soup.
Avoid giving fizzy drinks or fruit juice to children as it can make their diarrhoea worse. Babies should continue to feed as usual, either with breast milk or other milk feeds.
You can also:
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What Natural And Home Remedies Help Soothe Stomach Flu Symptoms
- Home treatment consists of adequate fluid intake so dehydration is prevented
- Clear fluids are recommended , but not fruit juices or milk as they may prolong the symptoms
Most patients who get gastroenteritis have no complications and will completely recover. The major complication for some patients is dehydration infants, children, the elderly and immunosuppressed are at higher risk for this complication. In many third world countries, hydration of infants is difficult at best so there are many infant deaths worldwide due to dehydration caused by gastroenteritis.
Replace Lost Fluids And Electrolytes
When you have viral gastroenteritis, you need to replace lost fluids and electrolytes to prevent dehydration or treat mild dehydration. You should drink plenty of liquids. If vomiting is a problem, try sipping small amounts of clear liquids.
Most adults with viral gastroenteritis can replace fluids and electrolytes with liquids such as
Eating saltine crackers can also help replace electrolytes.
If your child has viral gastroenteritis, you should give your child an oral rehydration solutionsuch as Pedialyte, Naturalyte, Infalyte, and CeraLyteas directed to replace lost fluids and electrolytes. Oral rehydration solutions are liquids that contain glucose and electrolytes. Talk with a doctor about giving these solutions to your infant. Infants should drink breast milk or formula as usual.
Older adults, adults with a weakened immune system, and adults with severe diarrhea or symptoms of dehydration should also drink oral rehydration solutions.
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Peppermint: Home Remedy For Stomach Flu
One of the most widely utilized herbs for bringing relief to all kinds of stomach discomfort, including a 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.
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.
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How Can I Treat Viral Gastroenteritis
In most cases, people with viral gastroenteritis get better on their own without medical treatment. You can treat viral gastroenteritis by replacing lost fluids and electrolytes to prevent dehydration. In some cases, over-the-counter medicines may help relieve your symptoms.
Research shows that following a restricted diet does not help treat viral gastroenteritis. When you have viral gastroenteritis, you may vomit after you eat or lose your appetite for a short time. When your appetite returns, you can most often go back to eating your normal diet, even if you still have diarrhea. Find tips on what to eat when you have viral gastroenteritis.
If your child has symptoms of viral gastroenteritis, such as vomiting or diarrhea, dont hesitate to call a doctor for advice.
When To See Your Doctor
You usually do not need any medical treatment, especially when you try home remedies. However, you should see your doctor if diarrhea and vomiting continue for a few days. Also, talk to your doctor if you notice signs of dehydrations, like dry mouth, fever , crying without tears, not urinating, crankiness, lack of energy, or blood in stool.
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Stomach Flu And Dehydration
How can I prevent dehydration?If your baby or child has had several bouts of vomiting or diarrhea, he or she will need to replace lost fluids and electrolytes.
If you are breastfeeding, continue to give your baby breastmilk. Breastmilk has fluids and electrolytes needed to prevent dehydration. Your doctor may also want you to give your baby an oral rehydration solution .
If you feed your baby formula, try switching to one that is lactose free while your baby is sick. Lactose can make diarrhea worse. Your doctor may also suggest switching from formula to an ORS for 12 to 24 hours, and then switching back.
For toddlers and young children, use an ORS, which contains the right mix of salt, sugar, potassium and other nutrients to help replace lost body fluids. Children older than 1 year may also have clear soups, clear sodas or juice mixed with water to help prevent dehydration. You should avoid giving your child plain water and dark sodas. Water alone does not contain enough salt and nutrients to help with dehydration. Dark sodas are typically very high in sugar and can irritate your childs stomach.
Signs of dehydration
- Avoid activity after eating.
- Avoid brushing your teeth after eating.
- Choose foods from all the food groups as you can tolerate them to get adequate nutrition.
Treatment for vomiting includes:
If vomiting and diarrhea last more than 24 hours, an oral rehydrating solution should be used to prevent and treat dehydration.
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How Long Do The Effects Last
Stomach flu rarely lasts longer than 1 to 3 days. However, it may be 1 to 2 weeks before your bowel habits are completely back to normal.
Dehydration is a potentially serious complication of stomach flu. It can happen if your body loses too much fluid because you keep vomiting or having diarrhea. If you are severely dehydrated, you may need to be given fluids intravenously . In children and older adults, dehydration can quickly become life threatening.
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Which Specialties Of Doctors Treat The Stomach Flu
Most individuals with viral or mild bacterial caused gastroenteritis require no treatment or can be treated by the patient’s primary care provider or pediatrician. For more patients with more severe gastroenteritis, such infectious disease specialists, gastroenterologists, emergency medicine specialists, allergists, critical care physicians, and hematologists may be consulted.
When To See A Doctor For Stomach Flu
Some people can develop severe symptoms or complications from gastroenteritis. Get medical help immediately if you have the stomach flu with:
- Vomit or stool with blood or mucus in it.
- Signs of severe dehydration: being unable to urinate, making very little or dark urine , sunken skin or eyes, not being able to make tears, very dry mouth, extreme thirst, or skin that doesnt go back when gently pinched.
- Dizziness, confusion, fainting, excessive sleepiness, or fussiness .
- Constant belly pain or swelling.
- Vomiting to the point where you cant keep any liquids or food inside your digestive tract.
- Fever, especially fever for more than 5 days or fever in infants or greater than 102.2°F in an older child or adult.
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Nobody Likes Getting Sick But There Is An Exceptional Dissatisfaction For When The Stomach Flu Hits The Stomach Flu Hits Hard And Delivers Is Own Brutal Mix Of Symptoms Often Rendering You Nonfunctional And Miserable For Days In Your Misery You Will Probably Wonder What On Earth You Can Do To Feel Better And Thats What We Are Here To Tell You
What is the Stomach Flu?Whats often called stomach flu is gastroenteritis, an infection of the stomach and intestines. The initial stages start with chills, fever, and nausea, which transition into vomiting, diarrhea, and aches and pains. Its awful, and there is no cure. Stomach flu has to run its course. The sickness usually passes in about 10 days without medication. The first few days tend to be the worst, but you can take steps to help get through it.
Causes of the Stomach Flu?Gastroenteritis is usually caused by any number of different viruses that can attack your gastrointestinal system. Its not caused by the influenza virus, which gives you the seasonal flu. Less often, bacteria can cause it, typically due to contaminated water or food that was prepared inadequately or in an unhygienic environment. The stomach flu is contagious, so contact with someone who has contracted the virus
RecoveryWhile the stomach flu is definitely not a pleasant experience, most people make a full recovery without any complications. The first few days tend to be the worst, but you can take steps to help get through it:
3. Get plenty of restWhen you have the stomach flu, your body needs rest in order to fight off the infection. Get plenty of sleep and reduce the amount of activity you normally do during the day. This means lounging on the couch when youre not in bed. While youre resting, your body is working hard to fight off the infection and repairing damage on the cellular level.