During the growing up years, kids are likely to be afflicted with certain ailments, infections and conditions and diarrhea is one of them. It can happen to people from any age group, as it is. The assuring thing is that most instances of childhood diarrhea get subsided and the affected kids do not suffer for long. This is not dangerous except in some circumstances and certain precautions and changes in diet can do the needful.
Symptoms of Diarrhea in Kids
The most recognizable and vital symptom of diarrhea in kids is watery and loose stools that become frequent. Besides, the affected children may also suffer from abdominal cramps, nausea, dehydration and vomiting.
Causes of Diarrhea in Kids
Diarrhea can be described as the body’s defense mechanism to eradicate germs through bowel movements. The most common place causes include:
- Infection caused by bacteria like salmonella and viruses like rotavirus.
- Use of certain medications and antibiotics can also lead to the onset of diarrhea in children.
- In some instances, food poisoning can be the cause as well. It tends to subside within 1 or 2 days.
- At times, food allergies and Crohn’s disease can also cause diarrhea in children.
How To Treat Diarrhea in Kids
You can seek medical intervention to treat kids affected by diarrhea or opt for proven home remedies. However, it is better you know when to seek medical help.
When To Seek Medical Intervention
Mild diarrhea does not need medical intervention or administering special medications. With home remedies, changes in food it can be handled. However, you may need to call a doctor when the child is severely dehydrated and significant fluid loss has occurred. Children with diarrhea who have become dehydrated may exhibit signs like
- Dry, sticky mouth
- Lack of energy
- Dark yellow urine
If the child is less than 1 year old and symptoms persist for more than 2 days, you should seek medical help quickly.
Top Home Remedies For Treating Diarrhea in Kids
- Kids afflicted with mild to moderate diarrhea need rest and replenishing fluid loss above everything. If vomiting and dehydration is not there, you can give the kid regular food and plenty of fluids. However, keep the amount of solid food limited until the kid recovers fully.
- You need to give the kid plenty of fluids, but water is not enough. It is important to offer the kid fluids that can replenish electrolyte and nutrient loss. Infants can be given formula milk or breast milk. For kids over 1 year, oral rehydration solution can be given.
- Studies have indicated offering diarrhea afflicted kids with yogurt and probiotics dairy products can help them receiver. The probiotics help replenish beneficial gut bacteria and this speeds up germ elimination.
- After the diarrhea subsides, be cautious about offering solid foods to the affected kids. It would be a safe step to offer bland foods for some time. Foods like rice, bananas, un-buttered toast and applesauce are easier to digest and they do not irritate the stomach too. After a couple of days, you can give the kids fruits and vegetables. Meat should be reintroduced after recovery.
- A few safety measures soul be adopted to thwart contamination. Washing hands with medicated soap and gels is a mandatory thing for kids suffering from Ensure you clean the bathroom with sanitizing fluids as well. Before offering fruits and vegetables to the kid, ensure they are washed properly.
Things To Avoid
There are certain foods and beverages that should not be given to a kid afflicted with diarrhea to avoid worsening of the condition.
- Avoid giving plain water to infants and kids sufferings from diarrhea. Similarly evade giving them any sports drink, sugary drinks, etc. These do not contain electrolytes and nutrients in required amounts and can aggravate diarrhea.
- Do not give the affected kid any OTC medicine to combat diarrhea. Always seek medical advice before this.
- Some parents prefer offering fruit juice to kids suffering from diarrhea, but it is not always effective. Avoid offering OTC fruit juices at any rate. Some fruit juices contain certain types of sugar that can aggravate stomach pain and diarrhea, say the experts.