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nausea/vomiting/diarrhea (gastroenteritis)

Nausea/Vomiting/Diarrhea (Gastroenteritis)

 

What is it?

 

Gastroenteritis is inflammation of the stomach and/or intestines. This inflammation is usually caused by viruses, but can be caused by contaminated food, medications, or exposure to unfamiliar bacteria during travel.

 

Symptoms:

 

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling "blah" and weak
  • Fever less than 100.5ºF (38ºC)

Self-Care Options for Symptoms:

Treat symptoms thru diet changes. Here are some guidelines:

FIRST SIX HOURS:

 

Avoid eating or drinking while vomiting and during the initial two-three hours after vomiting has stopped. You can try sucking on hard candy or small amounts of ice chips or popsicles if you feel thirsty.

 

FIRST DAY:

 

Continue to avoid solid foods for the first 24 hours; however, after vomiting has stopped for at least 2-3 hours start sipping clear liquids to avoid dehydration. You will feel thirsty but only sip for the next 2-3 hours.  Once you have gone 6 hours without vomiting you can increase the amount of clear liquids you drink as tolerated (still don’t gulp).  Drink water and other clear liquids that have calories (i.e. flat ginger ale, sprite or cola, broth, Jell-O, Gatorade®, weak tea with sugar, apple juice OK if no diarrhea). Avoid orange juice or other non-clear juices, creamed soups, alcohol, milk and other dairy.

 

SECOND DAY:

 

Add easily digested carbohydrate foods such as:

 

  • Canned peaches, pears, apricots
  • Bananas
  • Rice
  • Applesauce
  • Toast with jelly (no butter)
  • Crackers
  • Plain pasta

 

THIRD DAY:

 

If you are feeling better and have NO vomiting or diarrhea, you can add bland solid foods including:

 

  • Skinless baked or poached lean meats (chicken, pork and beef with NO fat on them)
  • Boiled eggs
  • Baked potato (plain)
  • Yogurt
  • Hot cereal

 

Avoid foods that are greasy, high acid (citrus/tomatoes), high fiber, spicy or dairy except yogurt until day four.

 

FOURTH DAY :

 

If you are feeling back to normal you can add other foods as tolerated.

 

Call Student Health (434.395.2102) or Urgent Care/Emergency Department if SHWC Closed:

  • IF you have a meal plan with D-Hall but have no clear liquids in your room.
  • IF fever goes above 101°F (38.3°C) or a lower fever persists more than 3 days.
  • IF symptoms do not improve after 2 days or do not resolve after 3 days.
  • ANY time you are unsure of what to do.

 

Seek IMMEDIATE Health Care at Student Health or Urgent Care/Emergency Department:

  • IF vomiting or diarrhea become severe or you are unable to keep liquids down.
  • IF bleeding occurs with vomiting or with bowel movements (may look like coffee grounds, bright red or black like tar).
  • IF stomach cramps become severe. 
  • IF fever goes above 101°F (38.3°C) or a lower fever persists more than 3 days.