Want to AVOID the stomach bug?!



Raise your hand if the stomach bug has already reached your home. It has hit households across the nation (at least according to my Facebook newsfeed). The only GOOD thing is that it seems to be a quick turn around. I contracted it about 4 days before Christmas. The actual sickness lasted about 12 hours and a few days of watching what I ate (or just not being quite up to eating normally). A week later, my daughter contracted it. We were super lucky that we were with family with a household of people to step in and help and that we both started first thing in the morning and then feeling better by dinner. There were no late night episodes or lost sleep. The three other people in the house did not contract it, and it’s safe to say that if they do, it is not from us.

So if you are one of the lucky ones, let’s look at some ways to AVOID the stomach bug. Then, we will look at some great things to have on hand in case this nasty bug hits your home.

Ways to AVOID:

  • Grape juice. 100% NO SUGAR ADDED grape juice (or drop a few drops of Grapefruit Seed Extract in some water). Drink it immediately if you have someone near you with the stomach flu– BEFORE symptoms. If you are already showing symptoms, it will just create a more colorful scene later. The juice works by changing the pH level in your intestinal tract causing the virus to be unable to multiply. It is also full of Vitamin C and antioxidants to flush out and kill the virus. The rule seems to be: drink it 3 times a day for a few days and you should be in the clear.
  • Wash hands! An obvious step but one many of us probably forget to do. Not the hand sanitizer stuff either– real soap and water. That is your best defense. The CDC conducted a study back in 2011 that showed a staff that used hand sanitizer were six times more likely to contract the norovirus over their soap and water washing counterparts.
  • Stick anything used by the sick in the dishwasher and don’t hand wash utensils and plates. Let the appliances in your kitchen do the heavy hitting. (Now I know some don’t have this luxury, but if you do, put that dishwasher to use.)
  • Wash clothes at the highest setting possible. Clothes can harbor these germs for longer than we would like (the washing machine is somewhat the culprit) so wash anything that came in contact with vomit or stool at the HIGHEST temperature that you can.
  • Clean all those small surfaces- door handles, banisters, keyboards, iPads, phones, remotes. Anything that a germy hand can touch, wipe it down!
  • Open the windows. Even on the coldest days, you can crack open a window to allow the air to circulate around so it doesn’t sit stale in your house.

Get THROUGH the virus:

Maybe you didn’t quite get out of contracted the virus despite your best efforts. Even if you don’t have it, these are some great things to have on hand in case it does make it into your house.

  • THESE bags!! My dear friend Shannon over on Monday Morning Mischief referenced them in her blog. A little while later, after this post, she was very happy to have these on hand in the car as they were put to good use.
  • Disinfecting wipes! You can use the hospital grade wipes called Caviwipes. These are super DUPER aggressive. These are the ones that will kill the virus. If you are not quite ready for these, any wipes are better than nothing. There are a ton of options from Babyganics to Lysol, They just are not guaranteed to kill the virus.
  • If all else fails keep disposable gloves near you at all times to avoid spreading your germs.
  • And if you are suffering from a fever, grab these fever reducing strips for kids  or ones for adults to allow your body to use the fever to fight the virus but still giving you a little relief.

The stomach bug is NO joke. Do what you can to avoid it, but know you are also know you are in good company if you didn’t.

When it rains… it pours.

Ever have one of those weeks that you think, “things can’t possibly get worse,” or if you are little bit more optimistic, “we will get through this and be stronger at the end?” Well let me tell you, I have had one of those weeks. It started with visiting grandparents and my daughter coming down with a 103 fever. She was a zombie. I had never seen her that sick. We headed to urgent care where we were and the doctor was PHENOMENAL. He checked her from head to toe and spend about 30 minutes with us (after we waited for about an hour and a half). Poor thing was checked for the flu and strep and both came back negative and her lungs were clear– no sign of anything. Fast forward to Thursday, she was still fighting a fever (after a 36 hour break) and we were able to head to our pediatrician. Went through the flu and strep test again and now this time X-rays to rule our pneumonia. EVERYTHING was negative. Finally two shots of antibiotics and a blood count confirmed she had something bacterial. She went back the next day for another blood count and ended up with two more shots of antibiotics. Finally the third day (Saturday), her blood count was back to normal and she was given an oral antibiotic. So now the task as hand— NO ONE ELSE GET SICK!!!

UNTIL— my son spikes a fever Monday afternoon (but only 100.something). UGH! Well I take him IMMEDIATELY to the doctor and explain my whole reasoning (which they totally understood) and again, everything came back negative so they wrote me a prescription for an antibiotic but to hold off one more day to see if he gets better. It’s now been day 4 of fever and 2 days of antibiotics, and another doctor visit!!!

Oh wait– and then I have had sciatic pain shooting down my leg, causing me excruciating pain to walk or move quickly, and even worse, getting out of bed is the biggest challenge… and ready for the kicker?! Husband isn’t home!!!! He was luckily home until my daughter was given antibiotic shots, but he hasn’t been home since.

SO— I know we have all been there. We have all had these weeks from hell that we want to just forget about (or maybe we can laugh about later— much MUCH later!) I try to keep reminding myself that it’s only been a week and we can get through it. All of this is temporary. All of this will eventually go away. Fevers reduce, pain goes away. We are lucky actually to hopefully get it all over with in a 2 week period— but I. Am. So. Tired. Positive thoughts, though, or I might just go insane and cry. But, we have all been there.

So to all the moms and dads who just want to throw in the towel— one step at a time. Things will get better. Reach out for help. Surprisingly, people do want to help!!! Yes, sometimes it might not be convenient for you or them, but people want to help and let them!! Parenting takes a village and sometimes in this world, I think we forget that. It’s not all happy kids and fun playdates as seen on Facebook but a daily struggle, so let people in and enjoy the village!