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    Diarrhoea and vomiting

    Diarrhoea and vomiting are common in adults, children and babies. Find out how to treat and avoid spreading them, and when to get medical help.

    Diarrhoea and vomiting

    Diarrhoea and vomiting are common in adults, children and babies. They're often caused by a stomach bug and should stop in a few days.

    The advice is the same if you have diarrhoea and vomiting together or separately.

    How to treat diarrhoea and vomiting yourself

    You can usually treat yourself or your child at home. The most important thing is to have lots of fluids to avoid dehydration.


    stay at home and get plenty of rest

    drink lots of fluids, such as water or squash – take small sips if you feel sick

    carry on breast or bottle feeding your baby – if they're being sick, try giving small feeds more often than usual

    give babies on formula or solid foods small sips of water between feeds

    eat when you feel able to – you do not need to eat or avoid any specific foods

    take paracetamol if you're in discomfort – check the leaflet before giving it to your child


    do not have fruit juice or fizzy drinks – they can make diarrhoea worse

    do not make baby formula weaker – use it at its usual strength

    do not give children under 12 medicine to stop diarrhoea

    do not give aspirin to children under 16

    How long diarrhoea and vomiting last

    In adults and children:

    diarrhoea usually stops within 5 to 7 days

    vomiting usually stops in 1 or 2 days

    Diarrhoea and vomiting can spread easily


    Stay off school or work until you've not been sick or had diarrhoea for at least 2 days.

    To help avoid spreading an infection:


    wash your hands with soap and water frequently

    wash any clothing or bedding that has poo or vomit on it separately on a hot wash

    clean toilet seats, flush handles, taps, surfaces and door handles every day


    do not prepare food for other people, if possible

    do not share towels, flannels, cutlery or utensils

    do not use a swimming pool until 2 weeks after the symptoms stop

    A pharmacist can help with diarrhoea and vomiting

    Speak to a pharmacist if:

    you or your child (over 5 years) have signs of dehydration – such as dark, smelly pee or peeing less than usual

    you need to stop diarrhoea for a few hours

    They may recommend:

    oral rehydration sachets you mix with water to make a drink

    medicine to stop diarrhoea for a few hours (like loperamide) – not suitable for children under 12


    Call a pharmacy or contact them online before going in person. You can get medicines delivered or ask someone to collect them.

    Find a pharmacy Urgent advice:

    Get advice from 111 now if:

    you're worried about a baby under 12 months

    your child stops breast or bottle feeding while they're ill

    a child under 5 years has signs of dehydration – such as fewer wet nappies

    you or your child (over 5 years) still have signs of dehydration after using oral rehydration sachets

    you or your child keep being sick and cannot keep fluid down

    you or your child have bloody diarrhoea or bleeding from the bottom

    you or your child have diarrhoea for more than 7 days or vomiting for more than 2 days

    111 will tell you what to do. They can arrange a phone call from a nurse or doctor if you need one.

    Go to 111.nhs.uk or call 111.

    Other ways to get help

    Immediate action required:

    Call 999 or go to A&E if you or your child:

    vomit blood or have vomit that looks like ground coffee

    have green or yellow-green vomit

    might have swallowed something poisonous

    have a stiff neck and pain when looking at bright lights

    have a sudden, severe headache or stomach ache

    What we mean by severe pain

    Find your nearest A&E

    Causes of diarrhoea and vomiting

    You probably will not know exactly what the cause is, but the main causes of diarrhoea and vomiting are treated in the same way.

    The most common causes are:

    a stomach bug (gastroenteritis)

    norovirus – also called the "vomiting bug"

    food poisoning

    Other causes of diarrhoea or vomiting

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    Page last reviewed: 07 December 2020

    Next review due: 07 December 2023

    Source : www.nhs.uk

    What to Give a Child for Upset Stomach and Vomiting

    When it comes to what to give a child for upset stomach and vomiting, time, hydration, and a few simple remedies will usually do the trick.

    Here’s What to Do If Your Child Is Throwing Up

    Medically reviewed by Carissa Stephens, R.N., CCRN, CPN — Written by Sarah Garone on October 13, 2021

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    Getty Images/Cavan Images

    An upset stomach in your baby or child can have any number of causes. Illnesses, motion sickness, or an infection of the digestive tract may be at the root of tummy troubles.

    Fortunately, with time, hydration, and a few simple remedies, your child’s vomiting and stomach pain will likely subside.

    If your kiddo’s under the weather with an upset stomach — and you want to know what you can do to help — we’ve got you covered. Here are our tips for treating it at home and when it’s time to see the doctor.

    How to stop the vomiting

    There’s no single surefire way to halt puking in its tracks. (If only!) The sad-but-true reality: The best course of action is usually to simply let an illness run its course.

    In fact, though it might be tempting to reach for medication for a vomiting child, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends against using any over-the-counter or prescription anti-vomiting drugs in kids (unless specifically advised to by your pediatrician).

    Using antibiotics to treat throwing up is especially discouraged, as many stomach illnesses are caused by viruses, not bacteria.

    Typically, the more important goal is to make sure your child stays hydrated throughout their bout of sickness. As they lose fluids through throwing up, giving them plenty to drink (and plenty of love and attention) is your best bet.

    Home remedies for your child’s upset stomach

    When you’re watching your kid upchuck for the fourth time in an hour, it’s only natural to want to do something. But with medications more or less off the table as a treatment, are there any ways you can actually help your poor sick kiddo? Yes — to a degree.

    As mentioned, staying hydrated is the name of the game for bouncing back from gastrointestinal (GI) ailments.

    To keep your baby hydrated, offer breast milk or formula at least 15 to 20 minutes after vomiting has subsided. Even if they only take in a small amount of liquid, that’s OK. Continue to offer frequently.

    For toddlers and older kids, you have more options for hydrating drinks. Besides water, you can try offering:

    popsicles broth ginger ale

    nonsugary electrolyte beverages (such as Pedialyte)

    In addition to providing fluids, focus your energy on offering appropriate foods, especially as your child recovers. A diet of mild, easily digestible foods is best. These may include:

    non-acidic fruits like bananas, melons, and figs

    lean meats without added seasonings

    rice or mashed potatoes

    toast, crackers, or plain cereal

    breast milk or formula for babies and toddlers

    And what about probiotics, you may wonder? The most current research shows that the good gut bugs don’t do much to help kids get over stomach flu.

    According to a 2018 study, probiotic supplements didn’t affect the duration or severity of acute gastroenteritis in children.

    Medicine for your child’s vomiting

    In the majority of cases, your child won’t require medical intervention to stop vomiting. Most instances of throwing up will go away on their own. However, sometimes, if vomiting is severe or goes on for a lengthy stretch, your doctor may prescribe medication.

    Zofran is an anti-nausea drug often given to chemotherapy patients and sometimes prescribed for severe vomiting and diarrhea in children. Though it’s likely to be given to your child in extreme circumstances only, such as in the emergency room or while hospitalized, it’s possible your pediatrician may prescribe it for at-home use.

    Drink, drink, drink

    After your child loses fluids through vomiting, they’ll need help replenishing their stores. Children become dehydrated more easily than adults because of their higher metabolism and the fact that a greater percentage of their bodies are made of water.

    Your child’s pediatrician can help you determine exactly how much fluid they need (and how often), but in general, it’s best to start small.

    For infants, you can start by dispensing a single teaspoon of fluid in a syringe, rather than a spoon or cup. As they begin to tolerate this, increase the amount of fluid gradually.

    For toddlers and older kids, offer small sips of water or other fluids at intervals of about 5 to 10 minutes. Once they’re able to keep this much down, let them slowly add more.

    But why is your child throwing up at all?

    For all the advancements in our modern medical technology, it’s not always possible to zero in on exactly why your child is dealing with stomach pain and vomiting.

    Still, some common causes include:

    infection with the norovirus, rotavirus, or adenovirus

    motion sickness food poisoning food allergies appendicitis

    infections of other parts of the body, such as the ears or urinary tract

    Kids are, of course, more prone to developing stomach infections simply because they don’t follow the same hygiene practices as adults. Babies and toddlers do all sorts of things that aren’t exactly typical for the average adult — from putting random objects in their mouths to crawling on the floor to picking each other’s noses.

    Source : www.healthline.com

    Tips and Remedies for Nausea and Vomiting

    WebMD has remedies for nausea and vomiting and tips on when to see a doctor. Pictures show home remedies and bust myths about treatments that don't work.

    Remedies for Nausea and Vomiting

    Medically Reviewed by Renee A. Alli, MD on June 01, 2020

    Nausea and Vomiting: What's Wrong?

    1 / 9

    Your child’s nausea has turned to vomiting, and you want to help them fast. Luckily, bouts of vomiting in kids aren’t usually harmful, and they pass quickly. Common causes are stomach viruses and sometimes food poisoning. Check in with your doctor if your child is less than 12 weeks old, acts sick, or if you are worried.

    Signs of Dehydration

    2 / 9

    One of the best things you can do is watch for dehydration. Kids get dehydrated more quickly than adults. Watch your child for: acting tired or cranky, dry mouth, fewer tears when crying, cool skin, sunken-looking eyes, not urinating as often as normal, and when they do go, not peeing very much or urine that is darker yellow.

    Treating Dehydration

    3 / 9

    To prevent and relieve dehydration, try to get your child to drink in very small amounts. Even if vomiting continues, they're still absorbing some of what you give them. Try ice chips, sips of water, sports drinks, or oral rehydration solutions like CeraLyte, Enfalyte, or Pedialyte. After they vomit, start with a small amount: a few tablespoons every few minutes. Over time, give them more as they are able to hold it down. Make sure they urinate regularly.

    What About Flat Soda?

    4 / 9

    For many years, parents used flat lemon/lime soda and ginger ale to help kids replace fluids, and many doctors still recommend those. But research has begun to show that oral rehydration solutions are better for kids. These drinks offer the right amounts of sugar and salt. An alternative can be a sports drink mixed with an equal amount of water.

    Liquid Diet

    5 / 9

    When it’s been several hours since your child last vomited, you can begin a clear liquid diet beyond just water, electrolyte drinks, or oral rehydration solutions. Stick with liquids you can see through. They are easier to digest, yet they offer nutrients to give your child energy. Think clear broth, cranberry juice, apple juice. Popsicles and Jell-O can work well, too.


    6 / 9

    Vomiting in kids usually goes away with a little time. It’s best to wait it out. Over-the-counter medicines for vomiting are not recommended for kids. Those meds won’t help if a virus is the cause -- and it usually is. Fluids rather than drugs are the key. If vomiting is severe, though, doctors may prescribe something to prevent the nausea and vomitting.

    Home Remedy: Ginger

    7 / 9

    It’s been used for thousands of years to reduce pain and stomach ills. Researchers believe the chemicals in ginger work in the stomach and intestines as well as the brain and nervous system to control nausea. While it isn’t proven to stop nausea and vomiting in kids, it may be worth a shot. It’s safe for kids over 2. Ask your pediatrician how to try it.


    8 / 9

    This technique has helped some with nausea. Acupressure puts pressure on one part of the body to bring about change elsewhere in the body. It’s similar to the ancient Chinese method of acupuncture. To try to quell a child’s nausea this way, use your middle and index fingers to press down on the groove between the two large tendons on the inside of their wrist that start at the palm of their hand.

    Source : www.webmd.com

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