Diarrhea, or loose stools, is common in toddlers, and usually goes away in a day or two. But if your child gets dehydrated, it can be harmful. Find out what causes diarrhea and how you can treat it.
Let’s look at some of the signs of diarrhea in toddlers, some possible causes, and how it might be treated:
The most obvious sign of child diarrhea is the diarrhea itself. You know what is normal for your child, and if this suddenly changes – becoming more frequent and looser – you’ll want to make a doctor’s appointment.
Diarrhea can quickly cause a child to become dehydrated, which can be dangerous. The symptoms of this include:
If your child is dehydrated, or is showing any of the following symptoms, you should seek medical advice urgently:
Many different things can cause child diarrhea, so it’s important to let your doctor determine the cause. Possible causes include:
Your doctor will advise on the best course of action for treating child diarrhea, depending on its cause, but here are some suggestions you can follow at home:
If you have a younger baby with diarrhea you should continue to offer breast milk as normal. Speak to your doctor before giving a baby oral rehydration salts or any other medication.
Depending on the cause, your child’s diarrhea may have been impossible to prevent. However, practicing good hygiene (washing hands frequently and properly with soap and warm water) can help stop some of the viruses that cause diarrhea from spreading.
Children with diarrhea should be kept away from other children until at least 48 hours after their symptoms improve.
Children who have had diarrhea in the last two weeks should avoid public swimming pools.
Diarrhea in a toddler is common and usually easily treated, but that doesn’t make it any more pleasant for you or your little one. Lots of fluids, a healthy balanced diet, practicing good hygiene and a trip to the doctor are usually the best toddler diarrhea remedy!
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