Diarrhea in children
Signs and Symptoms
1. Frequent bowel movements.
2. Loose, watery stools.
3. Abdominal pain or cramping.
What to do now
1. Avoid feeding your baby solid food at first to let the digestive tract rest.
2. Make sure your baby drinks enough clear, warm liquids (water, saline). Let him or her drink only moderate amounts for the first few hours, then as much as his or her stomach can handle.
3. If your baby’s stomach tolerates the fluids, try feeding bulk-adding foods such as bananas, white rice.
4. Don’t give anti-diarrhea products without doctor’s permission; allow your baby’s digestive system to expect whatever irritant or infectious agent may be causing the problem.
5. While your baby is recovering, avoid giving him or her milk products, and fiber-rich foods such as salads and fruit.
6. If your baby’s diarrhea is severe, be sure to avoid dehydration. The signs include dry mouth, sticky saliva, and dark yellow urine in smaller amounts than usual. Commercial dehydration drinks such as depilate (for infants) and sports drinks can help replace lost fluids and minerals.
When to call a doctor
1. If the diarrhea is a accompanied by severe cramping, light-headedness, chills, vomiting, or fever over 100 degrees.
2. If you notice signs of severe dehydration in your baby – dry mouth, sticky saliva, dizziness or weakness, and dark yellow urine Call for an immediate appointment.
3. If baby’s stools are bloody or tarry, or contain mucus or worms.
4. If your baby have diarrhea frequently, or if it occurs while your baby are taking a medication.
5. If diarrhea lasts for more than 48 hours (one day for a child under three, eight hours for an infant under six months).
6. If your baby may have been drinking untreated water.
7. If you notice signs of dehydration, which can be dangerous for young children.
How to prevent it
1. Avoid giving foods to your baby that you know your baby’s digestive system cannot tolerate well.
2. When traveling in foreign countries, give your baby only bottled or boiled or canned beverages. Make sure your baby eats more fruits and vegetables.