Knowing the Warning Signs
After two to six hours of having your lunch or dinner, you might wonder why you’re having headaches, fever and very nauseous and you start vomiting. Then as the abdominal cramps increases, so is your need to go to the bathroom because of diarrhoea. You might be experiencing the symptoms of eating spoiled or contaminated food.
So that was the Effect, but what causes food poisoning?
There are a lot of factors that might have produced those symptoms, commonly when the food taken in is spoiled; there are also instances of before or after mealtime this happens. Here is a list of common reasons;
- Water or food with bacteria, parasites, viruses or toxins by these germs (Example: E. coli enteritis, cholera, salmonella)
- Unsafe and unsanitary handling of meals or ingredients during preparation (like not washing of hands or the cooking materials used were dirty)
- Refrigerated or frozen foods that is not cooked or reheated properly.
- Raw fish, oyster, fruits and vegetables not cleaned well.
- Undercooked meats and eggs
The easiest targets of these risks are elderly people, infants, and persons with weakened immune system and even you when you are travelling outside the country which can expose you to contaminants. So we know what was the causes, now what to do when you have food poisoning?
3 steps before rushing to the Hospital:
Learn More: 3 ways of having a Healthy Fast Food Breakfast
- Diagnosis: you could do a simple assessment on yourself by thinking back the food you’ve just eaten and the symptoms like the headaches and diarrhoea. Getting a lab test immediately might not be advisable since you (and majority of individuals) might be experiencing mild to moderate symptoms of it and will settle down within 24 to 48 hours. If you are sure that you are really experiencing these symptoms for food contamination;
- Take first aid actions: usually conditions improve within 48 hours when early treatment for food poisoning is done like controlling the nauseas and preventing dehydration. Taking lots of water and electrolyte solutions (example: Gatorade) to replace all those lost fluids. Another could be letting the stomach relax by not eating for a few hours or avoiding other substance until you are feeling better. Add to that is taking lots of rest since dehydration could weaken you.
- Take home remedies for food poisoning. There are a lot of antidotes that could ease the symptoms that could just be in your kitchen.
- Ginger: good for virtually all types of digestive problems and first aid for an upset stomach. You can make a ginger tea or eating it raw as it increases the stomach’s acid and helps quickly digest your food.
- Garlic: gets rid of diarrhoea with its antibacterial and antiviral properties. If you can tolerate that smell, try chewing a fresh garlic clove or make a garlic juice. But if you don’t want to have that bad breath, make a rubbing mixture of garlic and soybean oil on your stomach after eating.
- Bananas: they’re soft and easy to digest and very advisable for restoring your energy levels. You could just eat a ripe one or make a shake.
- Honey: not just ‘sweet to the taste but healthy to the body’. Also have antifungal and antibacterial properties that you could take a teaspoon 3 times a day or add to your herbal or ginger tea.
- Lemon: not just for making lemonades but also for relief; with warm water and lemon extract, it can help in cleansing out the system from the toxins.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: its alkaline effect on the body can calm the lining of the stomach and even kill the bacteria. To avoid heartburn, you can dilute 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar on a cup of hot water and drink it before eating.
- Herbal Tea: aside with garlic and ginger teas, you could try peppermint (relaxes stomach aches and cramps); liquorice and chamomile teas (lessen stomach inflammation).
If Symptoms persist
Call your Doctor. Ask for further medication and prescription like taking antibiotics or meds for controlling the diarrhoea (Imodium A-D or Pepto-Bismol, for adults). Go to the hospital and get some lab tests if the symptoms exceed the 48 hours without improving like;
- bloody vomits or stools;
- extreme pain;
- high fever more than 38.6 C;
- frequent vomiting;
- severe symptoms of dehydration (dry mouth, excessive thirst, less or no urination, light headedness and weakness);
- inability to keep fluids or food and;
- Neurological symptoms (blurred vision).
Where the article very helpful? Post some comments and even additional input for treatment for food poisoning in the home.