Food poisoning can come out of nowhere and have a huge effect on you. It is often very unpleasant, and you will no doubt want to recover as soon as possible. Abdominal cramps, vomiting and diarrhea are the main symptoms, all of which can be very unpleasant.
So how should you treat it?
How to Treat Food Poisoning
Most cases of food poisoning are not too serious. They are uncomfortable for the affected person, but the symptoms will usually go in 24 hours or so. During that time, it is important to get plenty of rest and to drink fluids to avoid dehydration.
Diarrhea and vomiting can cause dehydration, which can make you weak and lightheaded. This can be serious if you cannot take plenty of fluids. You may want to consider re hydration packs, which restore crucial minerals that your body is losing.
If you have a mild fever, you may want to take some ibuprofen. Don’t take too much, and always stick to the amount specified in the instructions.
When to See a Doctor
Sometimes, food poisoning symptoms don’t go away after a day or two. This is a sign that you have a more serious virus or bacteria in your system, and a trip to the doctor is necessary.
See a doctor if you cannot re-hydrate because you are unable to keep fluids down. Dehydration can quickly cause problems, especially in children, and you should take it very seriously.
If you see signs of blood in your stools, this is another sign that you should go straight to the doctor.
If you are feeling particularly weak or lightheaded, this could be a sign of dehydration. Also, if you have a high fever that won’t go away, seek medical assistance.
Diarrhoea is a common symptom of food poisoning, but see your doctor if it lasts more than three days. The doctor may carry out tests to find out what you have, and they may provide you with an antibiotic.
When to Consider Taking Further Action
Many people become ill after preparing food at home, and if this happens, review your food preparation and storage practices to find out what you can change. Some good ideas can be found at the NHS website.
However, if you become ill after eating in a restaurant, you may want to take further action, which could include legal action. Find a lawyer with experience in food poisoning compensation, and find out what they advise.
Restaurants have a duty to provide safe food. If they are doing something wrong in their food preparation and storage, this needs to stop before someone else becomes ill.
Reduce Your Risk in the Future
As well as being careful about how you prepare and store your food, also be careful about where you eat. Choose restaurants with good reviews where hygiene is taken seriously, and if you get a bad feeling about a restaurant, don’t eat there. Also check your food when it is brought to your table for obvious danger signs like under cooked meat, and reduce the risks of getting ill.
Eleanor Connolly is a nurse who has seen it all! During her days off she likes to blog and has had her articles published on a growing number of health related sites all around the world.