Metro Kids Start The Year With Stomach Flu

Dr. Amy Lacroix in Midtown says many patients in the clinic have viral Gastroenteritis --otherwise known as the Stomach Flu. The main symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea. At the onset of the illness, children with viral gastroenteritis usually have a fever and vomiting that last for a day or so. Those affected may also have a headache, fever and abdominal cramps. Some symptoms could last up to 10 days, depending on the severity of the infection. If a child has bloody stool it is important to see a physician as it could be from the bacterial infection. If a child complains of a sore throat and shows symptoms of viral gastroenteritis, be sure to take him or her to the doctor to receive a Strep test. It's important to keep children hydrated with oral rehydration solutions like Pedialyte. If you think a child is dehydrated, contact their physician, as dehydration can be fatal for young children.

Not sure how to treat the kids at home when they get sick. Doctor Carey Ertz in Millard has these suggestions:

Fever or aches: Use Acetaminophen (Tylenol) every 6 hours or Ibuprofen (Advil) every 8 hours for discomfort or fever. Children and adolescents with viral infections should never take aspirin because it may cause Reye's syndrome.

Cough or hoarseness: For children over age 6 give cough drops. If your child is over 1 year of age, give honey (1/2 to 1 teaspoon as needed). Never give honey to babies. If honey is not available, you can use corn syrup.

Sore throat: Use hard candy for children over 6 years old. Warm chicken broth may also help children over 1 year old.

Stuffy or blocked nose: Warm-water or saline nosedrops and suction (or nose blowing) will open most blocked noses. Use nasal washes at least four times a day or whenever your child can't breathe through the nose. You can buy saline spray without a prescription. Saline nosedrops can also be made by adding 1/2 teaspoon of table salt to 1 cup (8 oz) of warm water. Humidifiers
Fluids: Encourage your child to drink adequate fluids to prevent dehydration.

About the Author...
Serese Cole
Serese is no stranger to the Midwest. She was born and raised in Kansas City and after years of moving from state to state - has called Nebraska home the last decade.

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