Food poisoning occurs when someone eats a food that contains a parasite, bacterium or virus that makes him/her ill. The symptoms could show up within a few hours of eating the contaminated food, and sometimes it can be severe enough to require hospitalization.
Symptoms of Food Poisoning
Food poisoning typically causes nausea, vomiting and diarrhea — often at the same time. A fever and abdominal pains may also accompany the illness. The symptoms of food poisoning can start within a few hours of eating the contaminated food, or several days later, depending on the source and the underlying virus or bacterial strain.
Three Most Common Types of Food Poisoning
There are a number of food-borne organisms that can cause food poisoning. The three most common are:
- Campylobacter — Typically found in undercooked meat and seafood, this bacterium causes headaches, dizziness and fever accompanied by stomach pains and diarrhea, which can be bloody. The bug can take one to 10 days before symptoms occur.
- Salmonella — This group of bacteria comes from raw or undercooked eggs, meat and poultry. This bug takes between 12 and 48 hours to develop and causes fever, vomiting and stomach pain.
- E. coli — This bacterium produces symptoms 12 to 36 hours after eating undercooked meats, unpasteurized dairy products and unpasteurized juices. It triggers diarrhea, stomach pains and potential vomiting.
What Causes Food Poisoning?
Food poisoning occurs when you ingest food that is contaminated with one of the organisms listed above or other harmful organisms. The contamination can occur at any point during the production of the food, from the initial growing time to the harvesting, processing, storing, shipping or even when cooking the food. Sometimes, food can be contaminated by other foods in the same space, such as produce coming in contact with raw chicken in the kitchen.
What to Do if You Notice Symptoms of Food Poisoning
If you notice symptoms of food poisoning, you may be able to stay at home until the symptoms pass. Home treatment for food poisoning involves drinking fluids and resting.
However, if the infected individual cannot keep down liquids or has blood in the stool or vomit, seek medical attention, right away. Also, any signs of dehydration, including the inability to cry, little to no urination, or severe weakness or dizziness, warrants a trip to the doctor. Food poisoning treatment involves protection against dehydration and, in the case of bacterial food poisoning, antibiotic treatment.
When dealing with the effects of food poisoning, the last thing you want is to spend hours waiting in an emergency room. Aayu Clinics offers the benefits of an urgent care facility with the prices of a regular doctor’s visit. Come to Aayu Clinics to be treated quickly for food poisoning.