Mommy/Kid/Teens &Tweens

Fighting The Stomach Bug

The tips below are from my personal experience and meant to be for informational purpose only. Please seek advise from professional MD for guidance in case of any illness. All opinions are mine and not part of any paid partnership.

Nothing rips you apart more than seeing your child wail in pain, cry, dry heave and run to the bathroom several times and throw up their guts hour after hour. This is a common scene when one has the “stomach bug”. We have had enough of our share of this nasty bug to know that early and aggressive treatment is the key to containing it and getting rid of it.

The stomach bug more commonly known as the stomach flu and medically termed Viral Gastroenteritis, is a horrendous illness that gives its victims excruciating stomach pain, cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fatigue, loss of appetite, fever, chills, and dehydration. It is extremely contagious and you can count on the rest of the family contracting it if one has already fallen victim.

The first time we encountered this illness was when we were vacationing in Canada at a family reunion. My elder child naturally gets sick first as her hand hygiene tends to be not so great. I recall that she got sick late at night and would wake up with immense stomach pain which will be followed by her running to the bathroom to throw up. Then came the diarrhea. It got so bad that she could not control it, she would just poop in her sleep sometimes. I remember taking down the bedsheets and throwing them in the washer hour after hour tirelessly. She was throwing up so much that we got concerned about dehydration. However, every time we gave her something to eat or drink she would immediately throw It up. The cycle of throwing up and cleaning up continued for 24 hours. Between the cleaning and tending to my child, I did not have much time to research what was going on. I had exhausted all the medications that I had brought with me. Luckily I had got some anti emetic from my pediatrician for some reason I cannot remember now but at least whenever she was able to keep it down, it allowed her to sleep off her misery. By the end of day two, her stomach ache was beginning to subside and she was asking for food. We started encouraging foods that was appetizing to her and a lot of water and Gatorade. By the end of day three it was looking like we were in the clear from this horrible nightmare. But lo and behold, the entire household full of family got sick one after another.

Right after my daughter, it was naturally I who got sick especially after handling all the poopy bedsheets and being thrown up on. I have never ever been so sick in my life till that day and I felt so horrible for what my daughter had gone through just two days prior. My poor baby had suffered so much pain and now I was experiencing first hand what she went through. As my condition worsened, I spent most of the day clenching my stomach in fetal position in bed, running to the bathroom to throw up and poop. Any tiny bit of sleep that I got helped ease the pain but would start up as soon as my stomach knew I was awake. The diarrhea made it worse. My husband trying to feed me was no help….I did not want to see or smell food. Finally a medical professional in the family suggested some medication from the Canadian Pharmacy that was similar to the anti emetic just…..so much more powerful in milligrams and in my opinion the holy grail for us surviving the stomach flu! This medication allowed me to sleep longer helping me pass the hours to get to the 48 hour mark. We knew now that the ‘bug” at least ran a 48 hour course and then recovery period would occur. So my goal for the rest of the day was to sleep this virus. By the second day I was fatigued but now able to get out of bed. I had to because there was an important family function that needed to be attended to. At first I thought I was not going to make it. I pushed my self to sit and drink some black tea and eat plain toast. To my amazement, the bread made me felt better, enough to where I was able to attend the function for about an hour or so. On day 3 I was 99 % back to normal. I did my research on this stomach flu as my younger daughter and husband were yet to be infected. Here are some tips that I have learnt from our experience. Please keep in mind that the medications mentioned above were either prescription or ones that I used with my own discretion and precaution. I highly suggest to consult your physician before use of any medication either for yourself or your children.

Tips For Fighting Off the Bug

These tips are applicable to both adults and children.

  1. Be prepared for the sickness to last at least 72 hours. The first 12 hours is rough with continuous vomiting and diarrhea.
  2. When your child starts throwing up, your first instinct will be to give them more food. Don’t! Their stomach are under turmoil and cannot tolerate any food.
  3. Dehydration is always of concern especially with vomiting and diarrhea. It’s ok to encourage sips of water and Gatorade but don’t be surprised if they throw that up also.
  4. Don’t worry if your child has not eaten anything for sometime. It’s ok. Believe me,. when they start recovering, they will be asking for food themselves. And be prepared when they do because they will be super hungry from all the diarrhea and throwing up!
  5. When you do start solids, offer bland foods such as toast with butter, bananas, black tea, soups, crackers, jello, rice. AVOID milk products. STOP eating if nausea returns and try again in a few hours.
  6. SLEEP SLEEP SLEEP. Sleeping the flu off is your best alternative. Sleeping can be hard with all the throwing up. Seek medical advise to see if an antiemetic can be prescribed so that your child can get some relief. There are also some herbal antiemetics available over the counter that work well too.
  7. Once your child starts showing signs of recovery (usually end of day 2) start encouraging lots of fluids to recover from dehydration and also to help flush the bug out of the system.
  8. By day 3 you should see almost complete signs of recovery. If you don’t please seek medical advice.
  9. In the meantime, it is very important to contain the virus so that the rest of the family does not catch it. Wash all beddings, disinfect all surfaces, clean the bathrooms and anything else your child might have come in contact with. I usually disinfect the entire house including door knobs and light switches to be on the safe side.
  10. WASH WASH WASH your hands at all times. Try to also wipe your child’s hands frequently with antibacterial wipes to reduce the spread of the virus.
  11. Try to isolate the sick child in one area/bedroom with their own bathroom. This will help contain the virus. And whoever the main caretaker of the child is , must take extra precaution making sure that they are not spreading the virus all over the house. Make sure they are taking frequent showers and washing their hands. If at all possible, have a different member of the house be in charge of food prep for a few days to minimize the spread of the virus.

I Hope this information from my personal experience is of some benefit to you. Stay well and stay safe and please feel free to leave a comment.

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