Food Poisoning | Causes, Symptoms And Treatment
Recently Updated On: July 5th, 2018
Food poisoning is a type of illness eaten by contaminated, toxic and spoiled food. In which diarrhea is the main symptom shown after food poisoning and sometimes including nausea and vomiting.
Although it’s quite uncomfortable, food poisoning isn’t unusual. As according to UNICEF (data.unicef.org), 5.26 lack of children died every year on earth due to diarrhea caused by food poisoning, contaminated water, and malnutrition. This is 1 in every 60 sec!
Food Poisoning Symptoms
If you have food poisoning the symptoms emerging time depends on the sources of infection and response given by your body to the infection.
Moreover, Symptoms may also vary depending on the source of the infection. Generally, the emerging time can range from as little as 1 hour to as long as 28 days. Some common food poisoning symptoms are:
But the condition may become life-threatening, If the food poisoning symptoms show the signs, such as:
- Food poisoning diarrhea persisting for more than three days and are not under control after being given OTC medication
- A fever higher than 102°f
- Difficulty seeing or speaking
- Symptoms of severe dehydration, which may include dry mouth, passing little to no urine, and difficulty keeping fluids down
- Blood during urination
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should contact your doctor immediately
Food Poisoning Causes
As it defined in ‘Diarrhea Causes and symptoms’, the three major causes are behind food poisoning:
Bacteria and Virus
Bacteria is by far the most prevalent cause. As according to emedicinehealth about 31 viral and bacterial pathogens are responsible for almost 9.4 million diagnosed food poisoning illnesses per year and about 39 million cases are unspecified (undiagnosed).
Yearly, about 128,000 people are hospitalized and about 3,000 die from all causes of food poisoning.
Its most common pathogens causes are:
- Clostridium perfringens
- Staphylococcus aureus
The most common pathogens that caused hospitalizations due to contamination of foods or fluids are:
- Campylobacter Escherichia coli (E. coli)
The most common pathogens that cause deaths are:
- Listeria monocytogenes
Besides this Sapovirus, rotavirus, and astrovirus showed similar symptoms, but they’re less common. Some categories of Hepatitis virus causes a serious condition as it can be transmitted through food.
Contamination of food through parasites is quite dangerous. Toxoplasma gondii is the most common parasite responsible for food poisoning.
It’s typically found in cat litter boxes. Parasites can live in your digestive tract and even you cannot detect it for years. However, people with weakened immune systems and pregnant women are at high risk if parasites make the niche in their intestines.
How Long Does Food Poisoning Last
Usually, it is not risky and most cases resolve within three to five days. If the condition is not under control in 3 days or continue for more than 5 days- You should talk to your doctor.
Food Poisoning What To Eat and drink
If you’ve food poisoning, you should remain properly hydrated and add rich electrolytes drinks to your daily diet. Fruit juice and coconut water restores carbohydrates and may help with fatigue.
For more information read- What To Eat When Have Diarrhea
Avoid caffeine, which may irritate the digestive tract. Decaffeinated teas with soothing herbs like chamomile, peppermint, and dandelion may calm an upset stomach.
Food Poisoning Treatment
Generally, the impact is mild hence you can treat food poisoning at home. Over-the-counter medications like Loperamide or Probiotics can help control diarrhea and Domperidon may help in eliminating nausea or vomiting if occurs with or without diarrhea.
However, you should check with your doctor before using these medications. It’s also advisable to get complete bed rest while suffering from food poisoning diarrhea and other symptoms.