Quick and Easy Home Remedies for Diarrhea in Toddlers
Have your toddler’s stool become loose or watery? If they pass such motion more than…
Have your toddler’s stool become loose or watery? If they pass such motion more than 3 times daily, they suffer from diarrhea. Your child must also be suffering from abdominal pain, vomiting, and tiredness. Diarrhea could occur due to various reasons such as viral or bacterial infection, food poisoning, or as a side effect of some medication. Let’s have a look at these effective and easy home remedies for diarrhea in your toddlers.
Although medicines are available to treat diarrhea, it is best to use home remedies for diarrhea in toddlers. Home remedies are accessible and, in most cases, do the job without causing any side effects to children. This article explores how to manage diarrhea in toddlers using simple home remedies.
Causes and Symptoms of Diarrhea in Toddlers
It would become easier for you to handle diarrhea in your child if you understand what caused it.
The most common causes of diarrhea in toddlers are:
- Infection(Viral or Bacterial): More than bacteria, a virus is the most common reason for diarrhea. Often when children put infected fingers in their mouth or through other sources, they get diarrhea
- Food Poisoning: Consuming contaminated food or water from unhygienic places can cause diarrhea in toddlers. Diarrhea hits within 24 hours of such occurrences. This is usually the most common reason for diarrhea in children.
- Side Effect: Did your baby take antibiotics recently? Then look no further- diarrhea could be a side effect of using some medicines. All you need to do is help your little one’s gut soothe by using some home remedies for diarrhea for your toddlers.
How do you know if your child has diarrhea? Watch out for some common symptoms.
The typical symptoms of diarrhea are:
If your toddler seems excessively dehydrated, is extremely dizzy, or if you notice blood or pus in the stool, consult a doctor immediately instead of trying home remedies.
Hydration: The Key to Managing Diarrhea
During diarrhea, the child’s body is attempting to flush out the toxins in the body. But, along with that, a lot of water is also lost. Instead of not letting the body do this critical function, managing the body’s general health while the toxins are removed is best. The most considerable risk associated with diarrhea is excessive body water loss as watery stool and vomit. Such dehydration may lead to several other severe problems for your little one. Therefore, the most crucial task is keeping the child hydrated.
Some recommended fluids for toddlers with diarrhea:
- Give lots of water at frequent intervals.
- Making them have ORS(oral rehydration solution) frequently will help restore the water content in the body. To make ORS at home, to 1 litre of boiled and cooled water, add ½ teaspoon of salt, and 6 teaspoons of sugar.
- It is better to avoid having fruit or vegetable juices. However, having coconut water is a good option.
BRAT Diet: Gentle Food for Diarrhea Relief
For relief from diarrhea, you should give gentle food to toddlers. Bananas, Rice, Apple sauce, and Toast together are called BRAT. These are light on the stomach. But recent studies show that this diet is restrictive and needs more nutrients.
Moreover, these may not necessarily help with stopping diarrhea. So, now doctors do not restrict the diet for toddlers with these items because of their low nutrition. They ask parents to give a balanced diet to children, which includes fruits, vegetables, yogurt, boiled meat, etc.
However, you must avoid giving raw vegetables, citrus fruits, and fried, fatty, and spicy food. Also, avoid giving sugary food like candies, juices, etc. Instead of fruit juices, you can give coconut water to the child. Also, lemonade and pomegranate juice are anti-inflammatory and help to soothe the gut. Starchy food such as potatoes and sweet potatoes can help control the symptoms of diarrhea. The most important thing is to have a lot of water to manage the water loss in the body due to dehydration.
Herbal Teas and Infusions for Soothing Digestion
Herbal teas are among the most effective home remedies to soothe an upset stomach. Teas infused with ginger, peppermint, fennel, chamomile, or holy basil (tulasi) can ease digestion problems in toddlers and adults alike. These teas help with nausea, vomiting, indigestion, stomach ache, and even stomach ulcers.
Traditionally, such teas have been used for decades to accelerate digestion, relieve gas and soothe the gut. To prepare herbal tea, boil a few leaves(or ginger) in 500ml water. Strain the tea, and give the lukewarm tea once or twice a day to the child. Such infusions are very easy to make and are very effective home remedies.
Probiotics: Restoring Healthy Gut Flora
Gut flora is the collective group of microbes that live in our digestive system. These are necessary for the functioning of the gut. Probiotics contain good bacteria capable of fighting against harmful bacteria in the body.
Probiotic-rich food such as yogurt, kombucha, miso, pickles, dark chocolate, cottage cheese, etc., should be included in the regular diet of kids. Especially if your toddler is suffering from diarrhea, having yogurt can be very calming for their gut.
There are several probiotic supplements available in the market. These are not necessary for toddlers. They may also not work with the child’s other medicines. The probiotics they get organically from the healthy food they eat. If your baby has frequent stomach issues, you should consult a doctor.
Preventive Measures to Avoid Diarrhea in Toddlers
We mentioned in the beginning that diarrhea is mainly caused due to consumption of contaminated food and water. To prevent toddlers from contracting diarrhea and several other diseases, they should be sensitized about the importance of hygiene and sanitation. You must ask them to wash their hands properly with soap and clean water before having food. It would help if you were to ask them to wash their hands soon after using the toilet every time. Children tend to put their dirty toys in their mouths. Often clean their toys with soap and warm water and restrict them from putting these in their mouth. Keep their room, bathroom, and surrounding clean using antiseptic cleaners.
As parents and primary caregivers, please provide your children with clean food and water. Even when you are eating out, ensure that the food is prepared in hygienic conditions. Purchase food products for cooking from clean resources.
Emphasize the importance of cleanliness to your toddlers repeatedly so that it becomes a part of their routine and lifestyle. Since birth, babies need to take many vaccines. Keep track of these vaccines to see if your little one gets all these and regular health checkups.
When to Seek Medical Attention
Typically, diarrhea can be managed using home remedies. Especially for children, their system should get rid of the toxins. Therefore, passing watery stool or vomit is okay if they don’t get adversely dehydrated. The most significant risk of diarrhea is when the body loses too much water content. This could lead to several worse problems, starting from dizziness. Hence, drinking lots of fluids is the key to managing diarrhea and restoring gut health.
Over-the-counter medicines though available for diarrhea should only be administered to children with proper guidance.
However, you must consult a doctor if you find issues such as:
Diarrhea is a common disease among children and adults alike. Adults often take medication when they get diarrhea. However, for toddlers, it is in their best interest not to take any drug if it is not severe. Many home remedies can be used to alleviate the problems related to diarrhea. This includes having gentle and nutritious food, herbal tea, and probiotics-rich food.
The most important effect of diarrhea is dehydration which can lead to life-threatening situations. Thus, hydrating the child constantly with water and other fluids is of utmost importance. All caretakers must always be on the lookout to prevent diarrhea. By including some simple hygiene habits, we can prevent most cases of diarrhea. But, like we always say, if the symptoms of diarrhea are prolonged and severe, consult a doctor to find ways for immediate relief.
Viral or bacterial infection, food poisoning, and side effect of some medications are the most common causes of diarrhea in toddlers.
Gentle food such as bananas, rice, applesauce, toast, boiled potatoes, chicken soup, etc., should be given. Ensure a balanced diet.
Yogurt, cottage cheese, pickles, miso, kimchi, kombucha, etc., are natural probiotics.
Yes, it is best to use home remedies such as mild food, probiotics, herbal tea, and hydration to resolve issues associated with diarrhea.
If the child has a high fever, blood in stool, dry and sticky mouth, dizziness, or severe stomach ache along with diarrhea, it is better to seek professional help.