Intestinal infection is really common and may possibly affect adults, children, and even infants. There is a population of certain bacteria in the intestines, which in facts, is beneficial for the entire digestion. However, when these bacteria are overgrowing, or present in the part of the digestive tracts where they should not belong, they might trigger digestive disruption, including the intestinal infection.
Visible symptoms of intestinal infections
In most cases, an intestinal infection resembles food poisoning and thus, it is often referred so. An infection to the intestines may affect the abdomen, the small intestines, or the colon. The major symptoms of this infection include diarrhea, vomiting, rectal bleeding, and some other digestive problems. Despite these terrible symptoms, intestinal infections are not always life-threatening. In fact, with proper treatments, the disease can be self-treated at home.
How long an intestinal infection lasts
If you are having intestinal bacterial overgrowth, you are likely to show some noticeable symptoms right away. Many people experience severe diarrhea, vomiting, fever, or bleed in stool, which may last for the first two or three days. During this first stage of infection, the bacteria overgrowth inhibits your digestion tracts from properly absorbing in-taken foods. As the reaction, vomiting or watery diarrhea usually occur several times a day.
During this early infection, many people find out that consuming foods can be useless, as you are going to get the foods out through either vomits or diarrhea. In many cases, people with intestinal infection experience 5 to 10 times of vomiting or diarrhea, which last for one full day. If these initial symptoms are properly treated, watery diarrhea as well as vomiting is going to gradually stop, so that you will be able to keep beneficial fluids and avoid extreme fatigue and dehydration.
Compared to the adults, children, especially those under two years old often experience the effects of intestinal infections longer, with more severe symptoms. Children infected with intestinal virus will experience initial symptoms that occur 2 days after the infection. Some common symptoms include abdominal pain, vomiting, and fever, which last for 2 to 3 days. If these initial symptoms are not treated, the infection may eventually develop into the colon infection, which involve severe diarrhea that lasts for approximately one week.
In patients with weakened immune system, such as infants, people with HIV and diabetes, and people undergoing chemotherapy, healing process for infected intestines may need longer period. If the problem develops into another health complication, it may last much longer and thus, triggers more severe impacts to the entire health, instead of merely the affected intestines. Untreated intestinal infection that last for weeks can probably be caused by the intestine’s inability to absorb food nutrition and thus, may lead to severe malnutrition. When this condition is reached, getting rid of an intestinal infection can be much more complicated. It is thus possible that the symptoms may alternatively come and go, preventing the body to fully recover.
What to do to get rid of the symptoms faster
There are some methods and remedies you can always do at home whenever the initial symptoms of an intestinal infection come up. These will help you minimize the effects and thus, prevent them from becoming worse.
- Paracetamol can be helpful in getting rid of fever and abdominal pain you might have during the initial infection.
- Sufficient rest is advised, and withdrawing yourself from school or office is highly recommended, so that the infection won’t spread. Once the infection spreads, it is harder for the infesting bacteria to be eliminated thoroughly.
- Performing proper hygiene is also essential in improving the effects of an intestinal infection. Make sure you are washing the hands properly, so that bacterial infestation can be inhibited. As a result, prolonged infection can be inhibited.
- Keep yourself hydrated, as this is really important. If you cannot eat solid foods, make sure you drink sufficient amount of water, which helps your body, especially the digestive tracts to keep essential fluids for maintaining body functions. Proper hydration will also prevent severe dehydration that may lead to fatigue or constipation.
- If you are allergic to antibiotics, use natural herbs, such as lemons, peppermints, and gingers to get rid of the symptoms.