imagesEvery parent dreads hearing the three words, "My tummy hurts." Immediately, you start imagining the worst-case scenario: Your child is totally wiped out for days with nonstop vomiting and diarrhea; your home becomes a breeding ground for germs; and this virus spreads like wildfire through your entire family. Unfortunately, this is a reality and lately a lot of children have been affected with what doctors are calling gastroenteritis or commonly known as stomach flu. In stomach-virus season, entire classrooms and childcare centers can be taken by storm. And so, in an effort to help protect your family, here is what you need to know about the stomach flu. Doctor Damaris Cruz, stationed at the Presbyterian Medical Clinic in the village of Patachakan explains.


Damaris Cruz – Doctor


“The symptoms of this virus usually vary from mild to very intense they can be, patient start with nausea and or vomiting both or either just one of them, sometimes they can have abdominal pain, sometimes they have diarrhea, some patient might even have mild headaches or low grade fevers.”


According to Dr. Cruz, over the past months there has been an increase of cases reported at the clinic. And despite the fact that the virus can be treated, the advice is not to self-medicate but seek medical help.


Damaris Cruz – Doctor


“This is mostly a self-limited process which means that by its own will resolve and the infections on its own, generally last between one to three days in some instances could last up to ten days, the main thing with this infection is that you have to prevent dehydration and in order to do that you have to very keep in noticing the signs or looking out for the signs dehydration, patience are dehydrated mostly children and older patient, their saliva is very thick and their mouth is very dry, they urinate very little, sometimes they have sunken eyes you need to look out for them and sometimes children cry and they don’t have much tears.”


Victor Castillo – Reporter


“Are those the immediate symptoms that a patient will experience, now what is the treatment plan?”


Damaris Cruz – Doctor


“Like is said the objective is to prevent dehydration in order to do that because this is an infection that affects mostly children than adults although they may be contaminated with the virus they do not develop the infection as rapidly as children but the immediate treatment would be in younger children pedialite after diarrhea 2 to 3 spoons of pedialite and in older children you can use rehydrating sauce even Gatorade because it contains a lot of minerals and chemicals that are lost when you have a lot of diarrhea, it is important that parents don’t auto medicate at home because the first instance parents think that an antibiotic will resolve because it is a viral cause anti biotic are not recommended even if the child has pain or fever preferable you consult with a doctor before you treat them if you are going to give any type of analgesic at home don’t; sue ibroprofin, don’t use aspirin because on an empty stomach it will cause more harm than good you have to use something for pain preferably you use Tylenol.”


And when one child has fallen ill to the virus, parents are advised not to send the child to school or any open public space.


Damaris Cruz – Doctor


“Preferably  to stay at home and in this case the parents have to play a very important role, parents have to emphasis that the child ingest the amount of water required to replenish the amount they lose and to keep an account of how much diarrhea and vomiting that the child is also having and in the even that they see any type of dehydration the child needs to be taken to a doctor, if the child does not consumes enough water they have to be taken to a medical center where it is replace with the anti-veins.”


So remember if your child falls ill, the number one rule is to keep your kids hydrated with plenty of clear liquids like water and pediatric electrolyte solutions like

Pedialyte

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