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Diarrhea

pg2_imgSmMost instances of vomiting and diarrhea in infants and children are caused by the presence of other viruses, such as strep throat, ear infections, or respiratory/sinus infections. Vomiting and diarrhea are usually short lived and will go away on their own. While you are waiting them out, it is best to try to keep your child well hydrated and comfortable. Below, find a few tips on how to most effectively treat vomiting and diarrhea and keep your child as comfortable as possible under these difficult circumstances.

Causes of Diarrhea
Infections that cause diarrhea are highly contagious and can be spread through:

  • Dirty hands
  • Food or water that is contaminated
  • Direct contact with fecal matter
  • Touching a contaminated surface, such as a toilet or toy

Treatment for Diarrhea (without Vomiting)

  • When a child experiences diarrhea without vomiting, focus on replacing fluids by mouth in an amount which is roughly equivalent to that which they are losing in diarrhea. Just as with vomiting alone, clear, sugary fluids or Pedialyte are good choices. Avoid fluids that can cause loose (such as apple juice and cider) and avoid dairy products. Diarrhea will cause temporary lactose intolerance in most children.
  • Keep your child’s diet bland for a few days, even when their hunger returns. If your child is tolerating fluids, you can use foods such as pretzels, crackers, toast, noodles, bananas, rice cakes, or applesauce to help soak up fluid.

Contact your doctor if your child has any of the following symptoms:

  • A severe or prolonged episode of diarrhea
  • Fever of 102°F or higher
  • Refusal to drink fluids
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea that contains blood or mucus
  • Dry or sticky mouth
  • Drying of the insides of the eyes and mouth
  • Lack of tear production or sunken soft spots in infants
  • Little or no urine output in a six to eight hour period
  • Dehydration

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