What is Upset stomach?
Upset stomach or abdominal pain is most often due to inflammation of the stomach lining and intestines caused by viruses. Typically, an upset stomach can be treated at home. If symptoms are extreme or prolonged, medical care is needed.
What are the symptoms?
Cramping abdominal pain
Nausea or vomiting
Diarrhea, loose or liquid stools, increased number of stools
Headache or body aches
Chills, with or without fevers
What are the treatment options?
Most people can successfully treat their symptoms at home. During the first 24 to 36 hours, the best treatment is a diet of clear liquids only. Frequent, small amounts of fluids are tolerated best. A good goal is to drink enough fluids to keep your urine a pale yellow or clear color. If vomiting occurs, wait up to two hours before trying to drink again, and start with sips of water or sucking on ice chips. If these are well tolerated, try other fluids:
Clear, non-caffeinated sodas such as 7-Up, Sprite or ginger ale
Diluted juices such as apple, grape, cherry or cranberry (avoid citrus juices)
Clear soup broth or bullion
If fluids are well tolerated, slowly add bland solid foods (see below), but it is important to continue to focus on fluid intake at the same time.
White toast with only honey or jelly
Plain white rice
What should be avoided?
Non-cultured dairy products (milk, cheese, ice cream,) spicy, greasy or fatty foods, whole grains, raw vegetables, alcohol, caffeine. It may take several days to a week for a person’s appetite, energy level, and bowels to be normal again.
What are the prevention options?
Wash hands well with soap and water after using the bathroom and before and after eating or handling food.
Do not share eating or drinking utensils with others.
Avoid milk, cheese or egg-based foods that have not been refrigerated.
Handle uncooked meat or poultry carefully, wash hands, utensils and work surfaces well after preparing, especially before handling other foods
When traveling in foreign countries drink bottled beverages and only eat fruits and vegetables that can be peeled or thoroughly cooked. Avoid sidewalk food stands.