In general diarrhea (an increase in the number and/or looseness of the stool) is not a dangerous condition. The biggest concern in the vast majority of cases is whether the individual has become dehydrated. Important signs of dehydration that you should pay close attention to if your child has diarrhea or has been vomiting repeatedly may include:
- Dry eyes (no tears) when crying.
- Dry mouth.
- No urine output for 15-18 hours.
The majority of diarrhea cases may be treated by providing for bowel rest, this is done by not exposing the gut to complex sugars, fats, or proteins, but to give the child clear liquids, so that the child may keep up with fluid losses in the stool.
Clear Liquids include:
- Pedialyte or Lytren
- Gatorade (any flavor)
- Weak jello water (take 1 packet of jello and add to it 1 quart of water)
- Flat (no bubbles) Seven-Up, Sprite, Coke, Pepsi, etc.
Remember that except for breast milk, milk is discouraged for the first 24 hours.
After the first 24 hours, the diet may gradually be advanced (1/4 to 1/2 to full strength formula) and solids may be slowly and gradually advanced. Please give me a call if you have any questions.