Vomiting and Diarrhea

Almost all cases of vomiting and diarrhea are caused by virus and are usually self limiting in duration. However, some kids may become dehydrated and the following is a guideline to help parents deal with both.

Vomiting with out diarrhea: It is unusual for children to become severely dehydrated from vomiting alone. However, it is very stressful for the parents and child. It is important to let the stomach "rest" and after each episode of vomiting to not allow your child anything by mouth for a least one hour (no matter how thirsty they look or how much they beg). After they have had one hour without vomiting, you can begin to give them small amount of fluid. Use the following guideline depending on the age of your child:

Less than 12 months: 1 tsp of Pedialyte every 5- 10 minutes. If tolerated for 1 hour can double the amount. If your child continues to do well you can resume ½ strength formula feeds or breast feeding every 3-4 hours. Gradually increase the amount as tolerates. I would suggest holding off on food until the following day.

Over 12 months: ½ ounce of either water, pedialyte or Gatorade every 5 to 10 minutes. May slowly increase the amount as tolerated. Same guideline as above on foods.

Diarrhea only: If your child has diarrhea without vomiting, you can feed them as your normally would. I would avoid all juice products and fruits and try and increase the amount of protein in the diet. The traditional BRAT diet is high in carbohydrates and can actually increase the volume of diarrhea. If your child has a high fever or blood in the stool, you need to call the office. Also it is much easier to become dehydrated from diarrhea-please try and monitor the amount or urine your child has, as this is a good indicator for hydration status.