It’s time to talk about the stomach flu. In its most common form, the stomach flu is a virus that causes inflammation of your stomach lining and can cause diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.
The symptoms of the stomach flu are quite similar to those of other types of gastro-intestinal illnesses like food poisoning or salmonella. It’s important to remember that there are several different types of viruses, bacteria, and parasites that cause these gastrointestinal issues. The term “stomach flu” refers specifically to this type of illness.
If you think you have the stomach flu, then it’s best to consult your doctor as soon as possible. They may want to test you for a number of different infections including norovirus, which can be extremely dangerous in children and adults with weakened immune systems.
Here are some general symptoms of the stomach flu along with what you should do if you suspect you might have it.
What Are Some Symptoms of the Stomach Flu?
Gastrointestinal illnesses like the stomach flu tend to affect everyone at one point or another. Here are some of the most commonly observed signs of the stomach flu:
Nausea is an early sign of the stomach flu. This means that you feel sick when you eat something, but not necessarily right away. You could experience nausea after hours or days of eating. If you’re experiencing nausea, then you probably have the stomach flu.
Vomiting is the body’s way of getting rid of excess fluid and waste from the digestive tract. When you vomit, you lose all of the liquid that your body didn’t get rid of through normal digestion. This often leads to dehydration and weight loss.
Diarrhea is loose stool that looks like watery brown soup. People who suffer from the stomach flu will likely experience diarrhea. Sometimes people don’t even notice they are experiencing diarrhea until later, when their clothes are wet from sweat and urine.
Abdominal pain is the feeling of pressure or tightness in the lower abdomen. Many times, people who have the stomach flu will also experience abdominal pain. The pain usually starts in the center or upper part of the abdomen and radiates outwards towards the back and sides.
Stomach cramps are sharp pains that occur in the muscles of the abdomen. These are typically very painful, so much so that some people describe them as being akin to childbirth.
Fatigue is a symptom that many people experience when they are ill. Not only does it make you tired, but you also find yourself unable to concentrate on things like work or school. It’s actually considered a hallmark of sickness.
All of these above points are the common stomach flu symptoms which are being seen in most of the people nowadays. As they are not having a healthy lifestyle and they are also eating processed food on regular basis. This is one of the significant reason in mostly people those who are suffering from this flu. So if you don’t want to suffer then you have to change your lifestyle.
How Long Does the Stomach Flu Last?
When you have the stomach flu, the symptoms last anywhere between 24-48 hours. However, it can sometimes go longer than that depending on how severe the infection is. There are also cases where the symptoms don’t go away, but instead just linger.
What Can I Do About the Stomach Flu?
If you suspect that you have the stomach flu, then it’s important to immediately contact your doctor or nurse practitioner. Your doctor is going to give you medicine to help ease the symptoms of the stomach flu. Depending on the severity of your case, they may also order special tests to determine the exact strain of infection that you have. Additionally, your doctor may want to perform certain diagnostic tests such as blood tests.
If you are able to, then it’s important to drink plenty of fluids. If your stomach is full of fluid, then it becomes harder for your body to absorb nutrients. Since the stomach is responsible for breaking down nutrients, this can lead to nutrient deficiencies and malnutrition.
Also, if you have the stomach flu, it’s important to avoid eating anything that could aggravate your condition. For example, it’s recommended that you refrain from eating raw seafood, undercooked meats, poultry, or unpasteurized milk products. Also, it’s important to avoid any foods that contain alcohol or preservatives. These additives can weaken your immune system and make your illness worse.
Lastly, it’s imperative that you drink plenty of water. While drinking water isn’t as effective as consuming other types of fluids, it still helps to keep your body hydrated. Also, try to maintain proper hygiene by washing your hands frequently and cleaning your kitchen surfaces regularly. A clean and healthy home environment is essential to preventing the spread of germs.
Infections from the stomach flu can be serious and potentially life threatening. Therefore, it’s vital that you seek treatment as quickly as possible.