How to Diagnose and Treat Stomach Flu?

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These messages are for mutual support and information sharing only. Always consult your doctor before trying anything you read here.
Diagnosis Based on symptoms, a physical exam and sometimes on the presence of similar cases in your community, stomach flu can be diagnosed. A rapid stool test can detect rotavirus or norovirus, but no quick tests can be used for other viruses that cause stomach flu. Treatment There's often no specific medical treatment for stomach flu. Antibiotics aren't effective against viruses, and overusing them can contribute to the development of antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria. Treatment usually consists of self-care measures:
  • Let your stomach settle.
  • Try sucking on ice chips or taking small sips of water.
  • Ease back into eating.
  • Avoid certain foods and substances until you feel better.
  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Be cautious with medications.
If infants and children get stomach flu, the most important goal is to replace lost fluids and salts:
  • Help your child rehydrate.
  • Get your child back to a normal diet slowly.
  • Avoid certain foods such as dairy products or sugary foods.
  • Make sure your child gets plenty of rest.
  • Avoid giving your child over-the-counter anti-diarrheal medications
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