Norovirus (Vomiting Bug)

Norovirus (Vomiting Bug)

Norovirus is a vomiting bug that cause vomiting and diarrhoea. It can be very unpleasant, but usually only lasts 2-3 days. It is usually spread by being in close contact with someone who has Norovirus, or by eating food that has been prepared by someone with Norovirus. 


The symptoms of the norovirus are

- feeling sick

- vomiting

- diarrohea

- fever

- a headache

- sore limbs and muscles


How to treat the Norovirus

For most adults and children, you need to rest and stay hydrated. Adults and children can take rehydration salts such as Dioralyte. It is best to sip with a straw, rather than gulp these down.

Stopping diarrhoea with medication is not recommended in those under 12 years. So do not give children products like loperamide. Adults may take loperamide to stop diarrhoea, but generally unless you have very severe diarrhoea, adults should let the diarrhoea pass through their system. 

If you have a headache or fever, you may take paracetamol, at the suitable dose for adults and children. Adults and children with a fever can strip off excess clothes, use a fan to get cooler, or place a cold compress on their head. 

If you are breast or bottle feeding, continue to do so, if baby will let you. If they are vomiting, it may be that you give smaller amounts of milk when the baby is able for it. Bottle fed babies can have sips of water in between feeds if they are able for it. DO NOT DILUTE THE BABIES FORMULA, OR MAKE IT WEAKER. Give the normal formula, and let baby take less of it.

When you feel like eating, just eat and you don't have to take or avoid and specific foods. 

What to do if my symptoms do not go away.

Do not go to the doctor with Norovirus, as you risk spreading it. You can however ring your GP first and get advice if the following apply - 

  • you're worried about a baby under 12 months
  • your child stops breast or bottle feeding while they're ill
  • a child under 5 years has signs of dehydration – such as fewer wet nappies
  • you or your child (over 5 years) still have signs of dehydration after using oral rehydration sachets
  • you or your child keep being sick and cannot keep fluid down
  • you or your child have bloody diarrhoea or bleeding from the bottom
  • you or your child have diarrhoea for more than 7 days or vomiting for more than 2 days


Go straight to A&E if you have any of the following symptoms

  • vomit blood or have vomit that looks like ground coffee
  • have green or yellow-green vomit
  • might have swallowed something poisonous
  • have a stiff neck and pain when looking at bright lights
  • have a sudden, severe headache or stomach ache

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