Friday, September 29, 2023

First Signs Of Stomach Flu

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How Can I Get Rid Of Stomach Flu

Little girl’s stomach flu symptoms actually early signs of brain tumor

The most important things you can do to feel better faster are rest and staying well hydrated. Between diarrhea and vomiting, your body loses a lot of water and electrolytes. If your belly is still upset, you can take small, frequent sips of water, sports drinks, juice or broth, or chew on ice chips. It is important to know that water alone may not be enough to keep you hydrated in severe cases of diarrhea so make sure to take in electrolyte balance hydration . Eat a normal diet when you feel hungry again.

Which Stomach Flu Symptoms Should I Look Out For

When you have a bad stomach how do you know if it is stomach flu? You can tell because you will have symptoms of gastroenteritis which include:

  • diarrhea which is usually watery but does not contain blood
  • stomach pain and cramps
  • feeling sick or being sick

If you have stomach flu you will also have some of these additional stomach flu symptoms such as:

  • a raised temperature
  • chills and shakes
  • aches and pains in the muscles and sometimes the joints
  • headache
  • Feeling weak

Doctor’s Notes On Gastroenteritis In Children And Adults

Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the lining of the stomach and small intestine. It causes symptoms that are commonly referred to as the stomach flu, but the condition is not related to influenza. Viral infections are the most common cause of gastroenteritis, but certain bacteria can also cause the condition. Rotavirus and norovirus are the two main causes of viral gastroenteritis. Parasitic infections, toxins, and drugs are other possible causes of gastroenteritis.

Signs and symptoms of gastroenteritis include loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. The diarrhea of viral gastroenteritis typically does not contain blood and may be watery. Some types of bacterial gastroenteritis can cause bloody diarrhea. Other associated signs and symptoms can include fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, and fatigue.

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When To Seek More Help

Though gastrointestinal viruses usually resolve with good self-care, there are some signs that you need urgent medical care. Go to the emergency room if you have any of these symptoms:

high feversevere abdominal paininability to keep anything down for two daysThat’s especially true if you’re in a high-risk group. “We’re a little more concerned with older patients because they’re more prone to getting dehydrated quickly,” Dr. Drake says.

What Medications Or Antibiotics Treat And Cure The Stomach Flu

stages of the stomach flu

Antibiotics are usually not prescribed until a bacteria or parasite has been identified as the cause of the infection. Antibiotics may be given for certain bacteria, specifically Campylobacter, Shigella, and Vibrio cholerae, if properly identified through laboratory tests. Otherwise, using any antibiotic or the wrong antibiotic can worsen some infections or make them last longer.

Antibiotics are not used to treat viral infections.

Some infections, such as Salmonella, are not treated with antibiotics. With supportive care comprising of fluids and rest, the body is able to fight off and rid itself of the infection without antibiotics.

For adults, the doctor may prescribe medications to stop the vomiting such as:

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How Is It Spread

Noroviruses are very contagious. They are found in the stool or vomit of infected people. From there, noroviruses are transferred to food, water, or surfaces by the hands of infected people who have not washed adequately after using the bathroom.

People become infected with norovirus by:

  • Eating food or drinking liquids contaminated by an infected person.
  • Eating uncooked shellfish that has been harvested from contaminated waters.
  • Touching contaminated surfaces or objects and then touching their mouth or eating without washing their hands first.

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 David B. Nelson, M.D., chair and professor of pediatrics at Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, D.C.

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Causes Of Food Poisoning

Food poisoning is caused by consuming food thats contaminated with germs. This is usually bacteria likeE. coli, Staphylococcus aureus, or Salmonella, but it can also include viruses or parasites.

With food poisoning, you’ll notice that the illness:

  • Typically occurs within hours
  • Can be traced to a particular food source
  • Affects more than one person
  • Has more severe symptoms than the stomach flu

My Stomach Flu Disaster Holiday In Turkey

Medical & Health Questions : Early Signs of a Stomach Virus

When our kids were about 10 and 12 we decided to try an all inclusive holiday in Turkey. All inclusive sounds very seductive as everything, all meals, drinks and snacks are included in the price. Unfortunately a few days into the holiday we all came down with awful stomach flu symptoms. The holiday was completely ruined and the resort doctor was kept very busy!

We have never been on an all inclusive holiday since, nor indeed can I bring myself to go back to Turkey at the moment. I think the problem lay with the mass catered buffet style food and probably less than perfect hygiene standards behind the scenes.

That does not mean that all mass catering or all inclusive holidays are bad but you are more at risk of coming down with gastric flu symptoms in these situations.

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Is The Stomach Flu Worse In Some People

In general, most people recover quickly from the stomach flu. Symptoms can be worse in babies, young children, older adults or anyone of any age that is immune-compromised. Vomiting and diarrhea can cause dehydration within just a short period of time, depending on the circumstances. Signs of dehydration include:

  • Extreme thirst.
  • General weakness.

Rotavirus And Stomach Flu: Everything You Need To Know

Grab your barf bucket, steel your nerves, and let our guidelines help you through rotavirus or the stomach flu.

There you are, minding your own business, when suddenly it happens: Your kid pukes on your shoes. And now you see the next few days of your life will be dominated by barf, saltine crackers, and the worry that everyone in the house will also fall ill. Here’s how to handle two of the most common stomach issues: gastroenteritis and rotavirus.

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How Is Stomach Flu Diagnosed

Healthcare providers often can diagnose stomach flu from your symptoms. But your provider may want to rule out other illnesses with some tests:

  • Stool samples: Tests look for bacteria, viruses or parasites in your stool
  • Sigmoidoscopy: A doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube with a tiny camera from the anus into the lower large intestine to look for signs of inflammatory bowel disease. The sigmoidoscopy is a 15-minute procedure that doesnt usually require sedation.

Sudden Or Excessive Fatigue

The Flu

Shorter days and reduced sunlight can make you feel tired. Theres a difference between being tired and experiencing extreme fatigue.

Sudden, excessive fatigue is one of the earliest symptoms of the flu. It may appear before other symptoms. Fatigue is also a symptom of the common cold, but its usually more severe with the flu.

Extreme weakness and tiredness may interfere with your normal activities. Its important that you limit activities and allow your body to rest. Take a few days off from work or school and stay in bed. Rest can strengthen your immune system and help you fight the virus.

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When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider

Viral gastroenteritis is common in children and adults. In most cases, the disease is not serious and will run its course in a few days. Call your healthcare provider if you or a family member has vomiting or diarrhea thats not getting better, if you see blood or tar-like stool, or if you have any signs of dehydration.

Body Aches And Chills

Body aches and chills are also common flu symptoms.

If youre coming down with the flu virus, you may mistakenly blame body aches on something else, such as a recent workout. Body aches can manifest anywhere in the body, especially in the head, back, and legs.

Chills may also accompany body aches. The flu may cause chills even before a fever develops.

Wrapping yourself in a warm blanket can increase your body temperature and possibly reduce chills. If you have body aches, you can take over-the-counter pain relieving medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen .

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What Are The Symptoms

Common symptoms of norovirus infection include vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach cramping. Less common symptoms can include low-grade fever or chills, headache, and muscle aches. Symptoms usually begin 1 or 2 days after ingesting the virus, but may appear as early as 12 hours after exposure. The illness typically comes on suddenly. The infected person may feel very sick and vomit often, sometimes without warning, many times a day. Sometimes people infected with norovirus have no symptoms at all, but can still pass the virus to others.

Symptoms Of The Stomach Flu That Linger

Little girl’s stomach flu symptoms actually early signs of brain tumor

The stomach flu, also known as gastroenteritis, is an inflammation of the stomach and intestines caused by a virus, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 3. However, the stomach flu is not caused by an influenza strain. The name stomach flu is more indicative of the similar symptoms to an influenza virus and not because it is of the same family of viruses. Noroviruses are the most common cause for the stomach flu. Highly contagious, the stomach flu can last from one to 10 days and cause serious symptoms such as severe diarrhea and dehydration. If symptoms become severe or last too long, medical attention is required.

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How To Prevent The Stomach Flu

Obviously, you want to keep your family from getting sick. “It only takes a few virus particles to infect someone, and there are billions in just a drop of vomit or diarrhea,” says Aron Hall, a researcher for at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of Viral Diseases, in Atlanta. However, you can take steps to prevent a full-scale invasion.

Get vaccinated. Your baby will get two or three doses of the rotavirus vaccine , which protects against 85 to 98 percent of severe rotavirus illness. However, there is no vaccine against norovirus.

The vaccine only prevents the four most common strains, so kids who have been vaccinated can still catch different types of rotavirus or other bugs that cause stomach flu. However, symptoms will likely be less severe in children who’ve been vaccinated, says Stanley Cohen, M.D., a pediatric gastroenterologist at the Children’s Center for Digestive Health Care in Atlanta, Georgia.

Heating Pad Or Heat Pack

If you have abdominal pain, try applying a low-temperature heating pad or a warm heat pack to your stomach. Cover the heating pad with a cloth and dont leave it on for more than 15 minutes at a time.

The heat can help relax the muscles in your digestive tract and keep them from spasming.

Shop online for heating pads and heat packs.

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What Causes Viral Gastroenteritis

Several viruses can cause gastroenteritis. Viruses can be found in the vomit and the diarrhea of infected people. It can live for a long time outside the body. People who are infected can spread the virus to objects they touch, especially if they dont wash their hands after using the bathroom. Food workers with the infection can spread it to others through food and beverages. Sewage that gets into the water supply can also spread the illness. Although viral gastroenteritis is sometimes called “stomach flu,” the seasonal influenza virus does not cause it.

Some of the common viruses that cause gastroenteritis include:

  • Rotavirus. This virus most commonly infects infants age 3 to 15 months. The illness lasts for 3 to 7 days and is most common in fall and winter.
  • Norovirus. This is the most common cause of adult infections and the virus thats usually responsible for outbreaks on cruise ships. Symptoms last from 1 to 3 days and can occur any time of the year.
  • Adenovirus. This virus occurs year-round and affects children under age 2. Symptoms last from 5 to 12 days.

Many other viruses can also cause viral gastroenteritis.

Will A Flu Shot Stop Me Getting Stomach Flu

luthfiannisahay: Nausea And Butterfly Feeling In Stomach

No, because stomach flu symptoms are not caused by real flu the influenza vaccination will not provide any protection. There are no vaccinations for most types of gastroenteritis but an exception is rotavirus which mainly affects babies and children.

Two different oral rotavirus vaccinations are available which is normally given to babies in two or three doses dropped onto the tongue at a few weeks old. These are about 74-98% effective and they keep many babies and toddlers out of hospital and even save lives as rotavirus can kill in severe cases.

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How Can I Take Care Of Myself

  • Rest your stomach and intestines by following the suggested guidelines for your diet during the illness, but make sure you prevent dehydration by drinking enough liquids. Drink just small amounts or sips while you are having vomiting.
  • Do not take aspirin, ibuprofen, or other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines without checking first with your healthcare provider.
  • Your symptoms are getting worse.
  • You keep having severe symptoms for more than 1 or 2 days, or you are just not getting better after a few days.
  • You start having symptoms that are not usually caused by stomach flu, such as blood in your vomit, bloody diarrhea, or severe abdominal pain.

What Causes Gastroenteritis

There are many ways gastroenteritis can be spread:

  • Contact with someone who has the virus
  • Contaminated food or water
  • Unwashed hands after going to the bathroom or changing a diaper

The most common cause of gastroenteritis is a virus. The main types are rotavirus and norovirus.

Rotavirus is the world’s most common cause of diarrhea in infants and young children. Norovirus is the most common cause of serious gastroenteritis and also foodborne disease outbreaks in the U.S.

Although not as common, bacteria such as E. coli and salmonella can also trigger the stomach flu. Salmonella and campylobacter bacteria are the most common bacterial causes of gastroenteritis in the U.S. and are usually spread by undercooked poultry, eggs, or poultry juices. Salmonella can also be spread through pet reptiles or live poultry.

Another bacteria, shigella, is often passed around in day care centers. It typically is spread from person to person, and common sources of infection are contaminated food and drinking water.

Parasites can also cause gastroenteritis, but it’s not common. You can pick up organisms such as giardia and cryptosporidium in contaminated swimming pools or by drinking contaminated water.

There are also other unusual ways to get gastroenteritis:

  • Heavy metals in drinking water
  • Eating a lot of acidic foods, like citrus fruit and tomatoes
  • Toxins that might be found in certain seafood
  • Medications such as antibiotics, antacids, laxatives, and chemotherapy drugs

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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.

When To See A Doctor

Is it the Stomach Flu or Appendicitis?

For adults, a doctor visit is recommended by the Mayo Clinic if theres blood in the vomit or stool, if they cant keep liquid down for more than 24 hours, or if a fever goes above 104 degrees Fahrenheit. For children, a doctor visit is recommended by the Mayo Clinic if a fever is above 102 degrees Fahrenheit, there is any blood in the stool or vomit, and if the child is extremely irritable or complains of being in a lot of pain. For infants, a doctor visit is recommended by the Mayo Clinic if they havent had a wet diaper for more than six hours, is unresponsive, has blood in stool or vomit, severe diarrhea or cries without tears.

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Stomach Flu Recovery Tips

Unfortunately, there is no specific treatment for viral stomach flu it just has to run its course.

But replacing lost fluids and nutrients will help your child feel better more quickly and prevent the bug from getting worse. Here’s what to do:

Avoid medications. It may be tempting to offer over-the-counter remedies, but experts strongly recommend caution against giving kids adult tummy meds without consulting your pediatrician. That’s because some, such as Pepto-Bismol and Kaopectate, contain aspirin or aspirin-like ingredients that increase the risk of Reye’s syndrome in children younger than 12. This rare but serious condition causes swelling in the liver and brain. Likewise, antidiarrheals like Imodium can lead to side effects in young children and should be avoided.

Keep up the fluids. Dehydration is a concern because fluids are leaving your child’s body faster from both ends than they are being replaced. Prevent dehydration with the following methods.

  • For breastfed or formula-fed babies: Let your infant’s belly rest for 15 to 20 minutes after a bout of vomiting or diarrhea, and then try nursing or bottle feeding again. “Breast milk is actually well tolerated by sick babies plus the antibodies in it can help strengthen their immune systems,” says Dr. Cohen.

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