Stomach bug sufferers urged to stay homeAvoid direct contact with others for 48 hours

07 January 2008

People struck down with the winter vomiting bug sweeping across the UK have been urged to stay at home until the symptoms have disappeared.

It’s estimated that more than 100,000 people a week are catching norovirus, which causes diarrhoea and vomiting.

The virus is easily transmitted from one person to another and can be caught via contact with an infected person, by consuming contaminated food or water or by contact with contaminated surfaces or objects.

NHS Direct says that outbreaks are more common in enclosed spaces like nurseries, schools, hospitals and care homes.

Dehydration

It says that people are likely to make a full recovery within two to three days. NHS Direct advice to anyone who gets the bug is:

  • drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration
  • adults can take rehydration drinks (available from pharmacies) to help the body's balance of salt, sugar and minerals
  • rehydration drinks are not always advised for children. Parents should speak to their pharmacist or GP first
  • try to avoid direct contact with other people for at least 48 hours after the symptoms have gone
  • avoid preparing food for others until at least three days after the symptoms have gone.

You can reduce the risks of getting a norovirus by practising good hygiene and washing your hands after using the toilet and before preparing food.