Your child throwing up suddenly can be alarming to you as a parent, particularly if you don’t understand what’s happening and why? You naturally want your child to be well always, so how can you help him? Well, by first understanding why he vomits and under what circumstances.
Causes of Child Vomiting
Children vomit due to many reasons, and in response to a wide range of situations. These range from milk allergies, to overeating or drinking fast, bad cough and cold, migraine, bladder infection, or eating rotten food. Let’s take a close look at the top causes for children vomiting:
1. Food poisoning
The symptoms of food poisoning are just like those of viral gastroenteritis. They could start within a few hours of eating spoiled food to a few days after. Sometimes, long-term medical conditions like digestive problems, celiac disease or lactose intolerance can cause chronic vomiting, randomly for months.
Gastroenteritis in kids is generally described as “stomach flu,” usually caused by a virus but sometimes by parasites and bacteria too. This stomach flu can lead to diarrhea which goes away in a maximum period of 48 hours. To avoid children getting stomach flu, they should wash their hands as often as possible.
3. Food allergies
When children react to certain foods, their immediate reaction is to vomit. Other reactions to food allergies are red and inflamed skin rash or urticaria, swollen faces, particularly near the lips, mouth and eyes.
4. Motion sickness
Children experience motion sickness when their inner ears sense motion but their eyes and joints don’t. This could cause children to vomit, lose their appetite, fatigue, cold sweat and an upset stomach.
5. Ear infections
When fluid builds up in the ear, it can cause vomiting and nausea, something akin to motion sickness. Usually, such ear infections heal by themselves, but if your child doesn’t improve after 48 hours, take your kid to the pediatrician.
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Perhaps, your child has an important test or exam coming up that’s making him nervous? Children do express stress and tension by vomiting. Though it isn’t really serious, it’s worth mentioning to your doctor. Perhaps, he could suggest some coping strategies like meditation, guided imagery or breathing exercises.
If your child accidentally swallows something poisonous, it could make him vomit. If this happens with your child, don’t lose time. Contact your family doctor immediately and take your kid to the nearest Accident and Emergency department.
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How to cope with child vomiting
For babies and toddlers:
- If you’re a nursing mother, you should nurse your baby often. You should allow your baby to suckle you for a few minutes every 10 minutes.
- If you breastfeed your baby, give him more feeds to re-hydrate him. How much extra fluid your baby needs depends on his age and size.
- If your baby doesn’t get sufficient fluids from breast milk, perhaps your doctor can advise you to use an oral re-hydration liquid.
Read more: Benefits of Breastfeeding for your baby
Children aged 1-11 years:
For children aged one and older, there are some time-tested ways of coping with vomiting:
- Ensure your child drinks liquids often. If he sips liquids in small amounts but often, it will help him.
- Let your child drink as much liquid as he wishes to have. Avoid giving him soda pop or child fruit juice as this contains a lot of sugar and insufficient amounts of electrolytes that are lost.
- A mix of cereal and milk can help replace any lost essential fluids.
- If your child still lacks sufficient fluids, you will need to try giving him an oral re-hydration solution (ORS).
- In some time, begin giving your child regular and nutritious foods after six hours marked by no vomits.
- If your child is old enough to eat solids and has been eating them till this incident, let him resume eating solid foods like toast, soup, mashed potatoes, bread and rice.
- Avoid giving him high-fiber foods like beans, oats, fruits and sugary foods like ice cream or candy.
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Treating your child who vomits for various reasons can be treated effectively by your family doctor or pediatrician. Now that you know the reasons for child vomiting, you will be better prepared to deal with his problem.