PARENTS

D: How Should You Treat A Baby With Diarrhoea?

10/12/2009 11:53 | Updated 22 May 2015

If your baby has diarrhoea the main risk is that he may become dehydrated.

To prevent this happening, make sure that you continue to supply plenty of liquids. Little and often is best.

Keep giving him his normal milk, breast or formula, and sips of water.

Occasionally, if diarrhoea has continued for a while in a formula fed baby, your GP might recommend a temporary switch to a soy based alternative.

This is usually not necessary, so don't make this change yourself without taking medical advice.

You could also consider offering rehydration salts; you might want to speak to your pharmacist about whether this is appropriate for your baby.

Anti-diarrhoea medicines should not be given to a baby or child.

If he is on solids, let him eat if he wants to, but don't force him. Plain foods are best, perhaps simply mashed banana or boiled rice.

Sometimes diarrhoea in a baby can lead to a sore bottom. If it is not feasible to use plain water to clean him instead of wipes, be gentle and maybe use a barrier cream.

Most nurseries will have guidance about when your baby can return after having diarrhoea. Do follow their instructions or else the bug could be passed around all the other children attending.

Call your doctor if you suspect that your baby is becoming dehydrated. Signs include a sunken fontanelle, drowsiness, dark urine, and less frequent urination.

You should also ring if your baby's diarrhoea lasts for more than five days, if you notice blood in the nappy, if there has been diarrhoea with vomiting for more than 24 hours, or if you suspect that the illness was caught while abroad.

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