Recognising Food Poisoning in Children

Food poisoning is no picnic for anyone. We do what we can to keep ourselves out of harm’s way. However, sometimes illness due to food poisoning can happen
December 14, 2012

Food poisoning is no picnic for anyone. We naturally do what we can to keep ourselves and our loved ones out of harm’s way.
However, sometimes illness or infection due to food poisoning can still happen, so it’s important to learn how to recognise the symptoms so that swift and effective action can be taken.

There are a variety of different microorganisms that can cause food-borne illness. Some of the more common types include salmonella, staphylococcus, listeria, and Campylobacter. Germs like these can grow on many types of food and make people of all ages ill, but children can become especially sick if food poisoning occurs.

Symptoms of Food Poisoning

If you or your child has been poisoned by something you’ve eaten, symptoms generally appear very quickly after consumption of whatever it was. Fever and vomiting are common symptoms. Abdominal cramps, excessive flatulence, and explosive diarrhoea can often follow. Symptoms of food poisoning often take a day or two to die down. Make sure your child drinks plenty of fluids in order to avoid dehydration.

When It’s Time to See Your Doctor

Although food poisoning is certainly a serious matter to be avoided, most cases pass on their own despite the discomfort they can cause. However, should the discomfort become very severe, it’s definitely better to go and see your doctor.

Medical attention should definitely be sought if your child is having bloody diarrhoea, has diarrhoea or vomiting that continues for more than a couple of days, or is showing symptoms of dehydration. You should always seek medical attention right away if your child shows signs of food poisoning and is younger than one year of age.

In order to help children recover from food poisoning faster, avoid feeding them dairy products for a few days. This can prolong diarrhoea, abdominal cramping, and other discomforts.