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Common Household Remedies Request

Readers, I'm suffering from what I think its a mild case of food poisoning. Assuming I sleep, and I wake up tomorrow, and still have it, what do I take?

Especially what do I take that's likely to be available in the only place open, a convenience store? Thank you!

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TheMomCat's picture
Submitted by TheMomCat on

If you really do have food poisoning, you don't want to stop the diarrhea. It's the way the body rids itself of toxins. You do need to keep up with fluids, lots of fluids. Dilute GatorAid or Pedialite (yes, I know it's for kids but it works for adults, too, in a pinch). Tea, juice nectar and black tea. Also dry toast, plain cooked rice, apples and bananas; essentially the BRAT diet. If you can't keep anything down, you need to see a doctor or be in the ER.

Hope the weather isn't too bad up there. My friends on the coast are getting hit.

I's tell you to have a happy Thanksgiving but under the circumstances, hope you fell better soon.

TMC

nippersdad's picture
Submitted by nippersdad on

Momcat and jo6pac are absolutely right. The pedialite, especially, will do wonders for you.

I hope you start to feeling better soon!

quixote's picture
Submitted by quixote on

What are the symptoms? Diarrhea? Colic? Vomiting? All of the above? How sudden was the onset? Any theories about what you ate that set it off?

The reason for the questions is that it could be anything. If you've grown fat-intolerant, which happens to lots of people with age, eating too much fat can do a good job of mimicking food poisoning. (No vomiting, but you'd tend to have the other symptoms and be very uncomfortable.) If it's a virus, nothing to do but wait for it to go away in any case. If it's bacterial, and your body doesn't deal with it in a couple of days, you need antibiotics. The only way to tell the difference for sure between the latter two is a lab test.

Boiling brown rice and drinking the water you'd normally pour off is very good at stopping diarrhea. But, as MomCat says, if you have a bacterial infection, stopping diarrhea may not be the best thing for you. I don't know if Gatorade has sugar in it. If so, don't use it much. Bacteria love sugar, and they can use surges of sugar in the blood. The sugar diffuses (well, "osmoses") out. Pedialyte would be much better in that case.

Oh, and, seconded: I hope you feel better soon!

paintedjaguar's picture
Submitted by paintedjaguar on

Dehydration can kill you quickly. For those who can't afford a hospital or for anyone who needs emergency re-hydration:

Most people aren't aware that when you can't keep anything down, dehydration can be treated by means of an enema using a solution of water with a little salt and sugar (essentially the same thing you get with an IV drip). Fluids and electrolytes are absorbed through the colon -- do some googleing for more details. Not a bad reason to keep an enema kit around the house even if you do have access to medical care -- might be quicker than getting processed into a hospital and eventually getting an IV started.

http://www.ehow.com/how_5471016_diy-enemas.html

One of the search terms that popped up when I looked for this was "enema of the State". I think we're all familiar with that one, yes? :)

Submitted by lambert on

I failed to defeat it. Horrible to talk about medical problems as mundane as this, but it's diarrhea and almost certainly from bad meat (another story). Dosed myself up with convenience store remedies to try make Thanksgiving with my friends, but felt faint and came home. (Sort of irionic I get this before the biggest eating day of the year.)

So that makes it bacterial and anything seems to kick them off, even water. (I see how cholera works now; what a horrible way to go.)

I think I might head over the clinic tomorrow if not eating hasn't starved it out. Any advice?

quixote's picture
Submitted by quixote on

If it's from bad meat, and even water sets you off: HIE THEE TO A DOCTOR.

I got a massive attack from some bad meat in Turkey once. Spent a day and a night losing it from both ends. And then it was over.

If that's not the progression, and it sounds like yours isn't, you really need to get care pronto.

Submitted by lambert on

... since I tried to go to my annual Thanksgiving dinner, and couldn't, and then just took to my bed after drinking a ton of water. No, er, ill effects, this morning, so I'll see if it's dead or only dormant shortly. If dormant, off to the clinic!

Submitted by lambert on

No, er, ill effects from the Thanksgiving leftovers, after two hours. (I really feel odd about issuing updates to the readership about my bowel movements. It's so damned Freudian.)

So, although my whole body fills weird, I think the evildoers are gone. Now I have to chlorox the fridge and move it to a cooler place (not hard!). That and go to the local store and get like a gallon of water, because I bet dehydration is where the weirdness comes from.

Then early to bed.

UPDATE Adding, I shouldn't say "victory." I hate the war metaphor, like "battle against _____." Let's militarize health, why not.

quixote's picture
Submitted by quixote on

Well, that's good news! Hang in there.

After my bout, I felt very light and an odd sort of calm. Like nothing could ever worry me in the new universe. I could see why ascetics might think they'd achieved something after "purification" rituals. Very pleasant, though not enough to go get near-dysentery again! The day after that I was pretty well back to normal mentally, but I stayed kind of weak-feeling for a few days.

Also, eat yoghurt or good sauerkraut or the like to help your gut flora re-equilibrate.

TheMomCat's picture
Submitted by TheMomCat on

Clinic?? No !! You need an ER ASAP

So says your friend the retired Emergency Medicine Physician.

TMC

Submitted by lambert on

... if I'd gotten insurance I couldn't have insulated the house, which, when done, may enable me to do such things as get insurance.

The clinic is a very good and humane one, and quite competent. If antibiotics are what I need, that's the place to go. But thanks!

paintedjaguar's picture
Submitted by paintedjaguar on

Since when has health care in the U.S. been about what people need? Or law, or housing or even food? You get what you can afford, unless you have friends in the right places or get lucky.

Splashoil's picture
Submitted by Splashoil on

Mexican pharmacies usually have a doctor on staff you can see for less than $3. (35$ pesos). There have been times when I have needed their high power antibiotics such as Eskapar (tm). The full treatment takes at least 3-5 days but after the first dose life is much more manageable. I have tried quitting the dosage early only to resume the nasty symptoms.
Here in el Norte such episodes are rare. But I always keep a refrigerator thermometer and check it frequently. A bad refrigerator can destroy foods when the temperature cannot be kept less than 38F maximum. After several learning curves I'm too old for many more. This stuff cannot be ignored. But every case may be different. I still regret not making my best friend go to a doctor when his eyes were also yellow. It was pancreatic cancer and the antibiotics that worked for me would not have helped him.
Be careful.

Splashoil's picture
Submitted by Splashoil on

Look under neath or in the back for the condenser coils. If they are buried in dust and lint the can't shed the heat properly. Back in my days as an itinerant construction boomer I lived in old rooming houses where these issues always came up. Us boarders had to fix it or sink. We had a refer that was always running, seemed normal. After I got sick, I bought a thermometer to prove there was a problem. Good times!

Splashoil's picture
Submitted by Splashoil on

I found mine in the kitchen section of a thrift store. It is a stainless dial type designed for the task even has a clip for the wire shelves. Since we don't make stuff anymore "it's not who we are!" They may go fast. Maybe the new round of Medicaid estate sales will produce more as we pass on. The empty box stores can surely be repurposed for the claw backs.....
Sure hope you get better we do need to stay informed.

Submitted by Dromaius on

It IS a good idea to treat (non-bloody, and non-fever) diarrhea from food poisoning with anti-diarrheal medication. Unless you have a serious immune-killing disease (HIV, etc.) your body can typically fight food borne bacteria even if you slow your gut a bit.

Diarrhea and the subsequent dehydration would be more likely to harm or kill you. So stopping the diarrhea kills the snake that is closest to you.

Most food poisoning will resolve on its own within a day or two.