What is it?
Infectious gastroenteritis is an infection of stomach and intestines usually caused by bacteria or viruses.It is typically spread by contact with an infected person or through contaminated food or water.
What are the symptoms?
Symptoms most common are: * Diarrhoea - usually lasts 5 to 7 days * Abdominal cramps * Nausea * Vomiting - usually lasts 1 to 2 days * Low-grade fever Other symptoms include: belching, gagging,flatulence ,chills, dehydration, lethargy, lightheadedness, loss of appetite, fast heart rate, headache, insufficient urine production, weakness, or weight loss
- Stay at home and get plenty of rest
- Drink lots of fluids, such as water and squash – take small sips if you feel sick
- Carry on giving breast or bottle feeds to your baby – if they’re being sick, try giving small feeds more often than usual
- For babies on formula or solid foods, give small sips of water between feeds
- Eat when you feel able to – you don’t need to have or avoid any specific foods
- Wash your hands with soap and water frequently
- Wash dirty clothing and bedding separately on a hot wash
- Clean toilet seats, flush handles, taps, surfaces and door handles every day
- Avoid fruit juice or fizzy drinks – they can make diarrhoea worse
- Don’t make baby formula weaker – use it at its usual strength
- Avoid giving young children medicine to stop diarrhoea
- Don’t give aspirin to children under 16
- You’re most infectious from when the symptoms start until 2 days after they’ve passed. Stay off school or work until the symptoms have stopped for 2 days.
- Avoid preparing food for other people, if possible
- Don’t share towels, flannels, cutlery or utensils
- Don’t use a swimming pool until 2 weeks after the symptoms stop
Things to watch out for
Contact your GP if you think you have symptoms of gastroenteritis