Diarrhea and Food Poisoning
Diarrhea and Food Poisoning during traveling in Thailand
Know about Traveler's Diarrhea
Thailand has some of the world’s tastiest food of exotic spices that, in some instance, come along with an equally exotic list of local germs that could make you sick. So, be careful about what and how you eat, because it would be a difficult time to get sick while traveling.
Food that contains toxins, produced by bacteria, can cause Food poisoning. These toxins will irritate your stomach, leading to nausea and vomiting, and sometime you may get fever and diarrhea as well. Since this is not infection, antibiotics are not helpful (and not needed).
On the other hand, if your food contains virus or bacteria that you are not familiar with, they will infect your guts and cause Infectious diarrhea. Sometime you may get fever, cramp, and vomiting.
What is the difference between diarrhea and traveler's diarrhea?
Diarrhea is the term for bowel movements that are loose or watery. Traveler's diarrhea occurs within 10 days of travel to an area with poor public hygiene.
When should I seek medical care if I get such illness?
• Large volume diarrhea more than 4-5 times a day
• You have fever above 39 °C
• You become very tired or dehydrated.
• You have severe abdominal or rectal pain
• You have mucous or bloody stools
• It is not getting better in 1-2 days.
How to avoid diarrhea?
• Choose street food that safe. They usually look and smells amazing, but you must be sure they are freshly cooked.
• Choose fresh and clean fruits and vegetables, make sure to wash them properly.
• Drink water from a bottle, be careful of ice from small restaurant.
• You may keep ORS (Oral Rehydration Solution) with you. They are available in most pharmacies and convenience stores.
What is the treatment of travelers’ diarrhea?
• Drink plenty of fluid, including water, broths and juices. Avoid caffeine and alcohol.
• Avoid certain foods such as dairy products, fatty foods, high-fiber foods or highly seasoned foods for a few days.
• Add semisolid and low-fiber foods gradually as your bowel movements return to normal. Try soda crackers, toast, eggs, rice or chicken.
• Consult doctor for antibiotics and anti-diarrheal medications. This will help reduce the number of watery bowel movements and control severe symptoms.