Gastroenteritis is back in France. Most often benign, diarrhea and vomiting can still cause dehydration. Here are the good things to do to avoid risks.
Diarrhea and vomiting are the main symptoms of gastroenteritis , which affects virtually all children between 6 months and 2 years. These signs may be accompanied by fever, nausea, stomach ache and lack of appetite. But if the gastro is most often benign, the main risk is dehydration. Indeed, in case of diarrhea and vomiting , the baby loses the minerals and the water he needs for the proper functioning of his body. Remember that dehydration is rather rare, but it can be serious if the child is not treated in time.
Watch his weight
A baby can become dehydrated and lose weight in just a few hours. So remember to record the number of stools and vomitings, weigh it regularly and check the amount of food and drink it ingests. Remember that a weight loss of 5% is synonymous with dehydration.
Offer him a rehydration solution
If your baby has gastroenteritis, an oral rehydration solution (ORS) containing water, carbohydrates, sodium and other minerals, allows the child to reabsorb the nutrients he has lost. When your baby vomits for example, suggest that you drink this solution that you have stored in the refrigerator. Concretely, you just have to fill a bottle of 200 ml of water and pour a packet of ORS, available without prescription in pharmacies and refunded until the 5 years of the child. If your toddler refuses the bottle, try to drink it with a pipette, in small doses initially, then gradually increasing the doses.
When to consult
If in doubt and if his behavior or crying is unusual, do not hesitate to contact your doctor. According to the French Pediatric Society, parents should consult in case of gastro if the child ” has at least three liquid stools in a few hours, associated or not with vomiting “. She also recommends ” to take her to the nearest emergency service very quickly, if he refuses to drink, sleeps a lot (we can not wake him up), if he is very soft, grumpy, has the eyes darkened, the complexion gray or breathe quickly. “
Treat symptoms and prepare adapted meals
If your child does not present a risk of dehydration, it is essential to relieve him of his symptoms. In case of vomiting for example, your doctor may prescribe an anti-emetic (in the form of suppository or orally) depending on the case, accompanied by a suitable diet. Meals should be split and light. In case of heavy diarrhea (from 3 to 4 stools a day), offer lactose-free milk to your baby and if you are breastfeeding, continue breastfeeding as usual by offering ORS between feeds. Remove all dairy products, green vegetables for the benefit of small banana pots. In the biggest, carrots, applesauce or quince, banana, white rice, pasta, hard cheeses are to be consumed first. Offer him food that he loves and make sure he drinks enough (water, soup …). Finally, in case of diarrhea, your doctor will prescribe your child the appropriate medications.