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What is gastroenteritis?
Gastroenteritis, often referred to as “stomach flu” or “gastric flu” is typically caused by viruses, bacteria or parasites in water or in contaminated food, or through contact with an infected person.
What are the symptoms of gastroenteritis?
Symptoms include abdominal cramps, stomach pains, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Depending on the particular parasites involved, it can also be accompanied by a fever, headache and swollen glands or lymph nodes. In severe cases, an infected person can suffer dehydration because of the loss of bodily fluids, which can be very serious. Symptoms of dehydration include dry eyes, vertigo, intense thirst, dry mouth and nasal passages, loss of skin elasticity and reduced production or both urine and tears.
What causes gastroenteritis?
The bacteria that cause gastroenteritis (e.g., E.coli, campylobacter, shigella and salmonella) from contaminated food, such as incorrectly cooked meats or food prepared in an unhygienic environment. It can spread like cold or flu, as the bacteria pass from an infected person to a healthy person. At the same time, many cases are caused by viruses, such as norovirus, Norwalk-type viruses, adenovirus, rotavirus, calcivirus and astrovirus. This type of gastroenteritis spreads rapidly, especially in cases of lax personal hygiene (e.g., when hand-washing is neglected). Parasites like Giarda or Cryptosporidium, often found in less developed countries, can also cause gastroenteritis.
How can gastroenteritis be avoided?
Good personal hygiene and proper care when preparing food are essential in avoiding gastroenteritis. Once infected, it is important to avoid dehydration, which can be dangerous or even deadly in extreme cases. Most natural products on the market require a certain amount of time to be effective and that means that a person continues to suffer from the illness while waiting- sometimes for days. Even worse, if the cause of the gastroenteritis is viral, it can be nearly impossible for others in the house to avoid infection.
What to do if you get gastroenteritis
Last winter, when we had an epidemic of gastroenteritis in Ottawa- Gatineau, I was impressed with the effectiveness of A.Vogel Digestive Health against the symptoms of the infection and in shortening their duration.
This product contains a high concentration of plants with antibacterial and antiviral properties, along with some that can relieve irritations in the digestive tract. In particular, it contains galangal root, a member of the ginger family that is phenomenal bacteria- and virus-killing abilities. As soon as Digestive Health is taken, it starts to calm the stomach and intestines, quickly relieving nausea and diarrhea and restoring normal digestive functions. A sick person will quickly start to recover and start taking foods and fluids as usual.
Chewing Digestive Health tablets offers the fastest relief. When gastroenteritis is present, there is the risk that a pill taken with water could be vomited back up before it was broken down, thus preventing the body from absorbing it.
Digestive Health can be taken once every half hour up to a total of three pills and once every hour thereafter if the stomach still shows signs of discomfort. It’s important to keep taking Digestive Health until the stomach feels completely normal again, as any discomfort is a sign that the infectious bacteria remains in the system, where they can quickly multiply and cause a second “round” of illness. In order to get the situation under control quickly, it is most effective to take Digestive Health at shorter intervals, but over a lesser period of time.
NOTE: Gastroenteritis is an acute problem that requires a dosage higher than the usual recommended daily dosage of Digestive Health. It is intended to be taken at this higher dosage only for a day. If the gastroenteritis does not show some improvement during that time frame, discontinue usage and consult a physician. The plants used in Digestive Health are completely safe to take at a higher dose for the short term, however if vomiting and diarrhea continue, the medicine cannot be properly absorbed by the body and dehydration can occur.
Children (2 years and over) should take only a half pill at a time and should be given less frequently as soon as an improvement is seen.
For family members who haven’t yet succumbed to the infection, it can be helpful to take one pill 3-4 times a day. This can stop the infection from taking hold to begin with.
Rice and unsweetened apple sauce are good foods to eat as one starts to recover from gastroenteritis. Rice helps to calm and regulate digestion, so that food doesn’t pass too quickly through the intestinal system and apple sauce helps to replenish the minerals and nutrients lost through vomiting and diarrhea.
When should you see a doctor?
Consult a doctor right away if you have any of the following:
- Diarrhea that lasts four more than 5 days without improvement
- Fever (more than 38C or 100F) in combination with diarrhea
- Vomiting for more than 24 hours without improvement
What do you think?
Have you found what you read useful? If so, I would love if you would leave your comment below. Thanks Sonia Chartier
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