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Vomiting is the body's way of expelling substances from the stomach, and sometimes to get rid of something harmful in it.  There are various reasons that can cause children to vomit, including illnesses, motion sickness, stress, feeling cold and other problems.  However, in most cases Vomiting in children is caused by gastroenteritis in the gastrointestinal tract.  It is usually caused by common viruses that we deal with every day.  In addition to causing vomiting, these viruses can cause nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.  But sometimes vomiting may occur for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with food or the stomach.

bouts of vomiting

 Whatever the cause of the vomiting episode, the baby's stomach muscles will contract forcefully, and food and other contents in the stomach will be expelled out of the body.  Through the esophagus, mouth, and sometimes possibly the nose.  In most cases, the child's vomiting raises the mother's concerns about how to properly deal with this matter, and what is the reason behind it?

 It is important for the mother to remain calm, because vomiting is really scary for young children and parents, and it is stressful for children of all ages.  Therefore, staying with the child with all care and calm, supporting and reassuring him, cleaning him and preventing him from drying out, are the first steps for a quick recovery.

 Gastroenteritis infection usually does not last long and is not more harmful by itself, but children (especially infants) who cannot drink enough fluids and at the same time suffer from vomiting and diarrhea, may become dehydrated as a result of their bodies losing nutrients and water  Which leads to more disease.  Oral rehydration is the best way to help prevent dehydration or treat mild fluid loss at the right time.

Symptoms of dehydration

 Signs and symptoms of dehydration include:

  •  No urination for eight hours (or less than four wet nappies per day for a child or more than 4 to 66 hours without wet nappies in a child under 6 months old).
  •  Crying without tears.
  •  Dryness and stickiness in the mouth and chapped lips.
  •  Dry or wrinkled skin, especially on the abdomen, arms and legs.
  •  Mental confusion.
  •  Excessive sleepiness and inactivity.
  •  Deep and rapid breathing.
  •  - Accelerated pulse.
  •  Dark-colored urine.
  •  Muscle cramps.
  •  Sunken eyes.
  • Feeling of cold in the arms and legs.

 To overcome dehydration, use water.  After consulting the doctor, the mother can give the child one of the types of medical solutions available in the pharmacy, which contain a number of salts.  This is to replace all of the important fluids and salts lost by the body with vomiting and diarrhea.

Give your child "small" amounts of these fluids "frequently", because too much fluid intake too quickly leads to an upset stomach, which may cause him to vomit again.  Specifically, for children 1 to 6 years of age, start with 1 tablespoon (about 15 milliliters) of liquid saline every 10 minutes (equivalent to one sip)  

Children over 6 years old can drink an ounce (about 30 milliliters) every ten minutes.  Double this amount when the child has gone four hours without vomiting.  If vomiting persists, stop giving him any fluids for an hour, and start again with smaller amounts.

 After staying with the child and calming him down and giving him fluids and salts, the next step for the mother in caring for the child in the event of a vomiting episode is to change his diet.  By stopping giving him all solid foods for at least eight hours.  If he's older than a year and not dehydrated, offer him clear liquids such as broth or decaffeinated lemon soda.  Avoid offering cold or super sweet liquids, as they stimulate more stomach cramps and vomiting, making the child uncomfortable and miserable.  Do not give your child fruit juice or milk.

 Once your child has gone eight hours without vomiting, you can return to introducing bland solid foods, such as crackers, toast and broth with pasta, rice and mashed potatoes.  Then gradually resume his normal diet, starting within 24 hours after the vomiting has ended.  Vomiting associated with a stomach virus usually clears up within 24 hours.  And remember: don't be in a rush to introduce solid foods while your baby is recovering, as his stomach will tell him when it's time to eat them.

As for drugs to stop vomiting, there are no effective drugs for vomiting caused by a stomach virus, and vomiting may be a good thing.  Because this type of vomiting removes infected material, it should not be suppressed.  Antiemetics can also be harmful when they slow down the bowels and mask symptoms.  Therefore, never give your child medication for nausea and vomiting without consulting your doctor first.

 For children over one year of age, a gentle digestive tea, such as chamomile and peppermint, can be offered.

 For children who are breastfed, the mother follows these steps:

  •  Give small but frequent amounts of about 2 teaspoons (6 milliliters each) of unflavored oral salt solution, every 15 minutes with an oral spoon or syringe.  Consult your doctor about the best type of solution.
  •  A child over 6 months old may not like the taste of regular oral salt solution, and then you can buy flavored solutions.  Or only for children over 6 months of age, you can add ½ teaspoon (about 3 milliliters) of juice to each serving of unflavored oral salt solution.
  •  If your child can hold the saline solution in his stomach for more than two hours without vomiting, you can slowly increase the amount you give him.  For example, if your young child usually drinks 4 ounces (about 120 milliliters) per meal, slowly give that amount of the saline solution by mouth as the hours go on.
  •  Sometimes children who are very thirsty try to drink a lot of fluids quickly, but they can't stand it.  Therefore, do not give more solution than your child normally drinks, as this will likely cause more vomiting.
  •  After your baby has gone more than 8 hours without vomiting, slowly reintroduce milk.  Start with small, frequent meals of 1/2 ounce to 1 ounce (or about 15-30 milliliters).  Slowly work your way back to your normal feeding routine.  And if your baby is already eating solid foods, it's okay to start feeding him small amounts of them again.  If your child has not vomited for 24 hours, you can go back to the usual feeding routine.
  •  Multiple causes of vomiting in children
  •  In addition to viral gastroenteritis in the digestive system, other common causes of vomiting include:
  •  Respiratory infections: It can also lead to vomiting, especially when a child swallows a lot of phlegm.  Because the excess mucus in the stomach can irritate them and cause them to vomit.  Coughing can also lead to vomiting, a reaction that is already designed to reduce coughing.

Harmful substances, such as those in some plants or herbs not suitable for children, or medicines.

  Motion sickness that occurs when traveling in a car, boat or plane and provokes a feeling of nausea.  And the best way to avoid vomiting at that time is to have the child have a snack before leaving, make sure he breathes fresh air, and focus on looking at distant objects while traveling.

 Food allergy: Some food allergies can cause occasional diarrhea and vomiting.

 Appendicitis: Symptoms in this case may seem indistinguishable from a stomach virus, but the disease can be more serious.  So it is worth noting this pattern in the sequence of symptoms: Abdominal pain usually begins around the belly button, and moves to the lower right side of the abdomen.  It may be accompanied by a rise in temperature or vomiting.

 Urinary tract infections: If the child is vomiting with frequent, painful urination and pain in the lower abdomen, he may have a urinary tract infection.  What requires a doctor's review.

  Headache: When a child complains of headaches with vomiting, the cause may be either a general viral infection, migraine headaches, or meningitis around the brain.  Other signs of meningitis include a stiff neck, fever, lethargy, and a purple or red rash.  Here it is worth consulting a doctor without delay.

 When should I contact the pediatrician?
 The following reasons require a doctor's consultation, namely:

  1.  Dehydration is the most common complication of vomiting.  And if your child shows any signs of dehydration (which were mentioned in the article), contact your doctor.

  2.  Vomiting of a child less than two months old.
  3.  Severe or projectile vomiting in an infant, especially a child under 3 months of age.

  4.  The vomiting continues after your child has taken an oral salt solution for about 24 hours.
  5.  > Vomiting returns as soon as you try to resume your child's normal diet.
  6.   Vomiting accompanied by a fever over 38°C.
  7.   If the mother sees blood or bile in the child's vomit.  Usually, the vomit contains things you've recently eaten or drank.  As soon as the stomach is emptied of food, with repeated vomiting, liquid stomach secretions of a yellow color, similar to the color of butter, come out.  The presence of blood, whether bright red or dark like coffee grounds, in the vomit is a sign that requires immediate attention.  As well as the exit of vomiting indicates the presence of bile secretion.  It is a green secretion, which may be the result of an intestinal obstruction and requires a doctor's review.
  8. It's normal for most children who are vomiting to feel some stomach pain.  But if the child's pain appears severe, lasts more than four hours, or is in the lower right abdomen, it is worth contacting the doctor without delay.
  9.   Swelling, redness or pain in the boy's scrotum.
  10.   Pain with urination, blood in the urine, or back pain.
  11.  Headache or stiff neck.
  12.   Vomiting that begins after a head injury.

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