How Long Does It Take to Recover from the Stomach Flu? Plus Home Remedies for Babies, Toddlers, Children, and Adults

How Long Does It Take to Recover From the Stomach Flu?

The symptoms of stomach flu are similar to those of cold or influenza. You may feel feverish, chills, headache, sore throat and runny nose. Other symptoms include: diarrhea (sometimes bloody), vomiting (often bloody) and abdominal pain. There is no cure for stomach bug but there are some home remedies that can help you recover faster from the illness.

Symptoms of Stomach Bug Twice in Two Weeks

You will experience the same symptoms twice in two weeks. Symptoms usually begin within one week and last up to three days. During this time you might have difficulty eating, drinking or sleeping. Your body temperature may rise and fall rapidly during these first few days. You may even feel very tired and weak at times.

These symptoms are often accompanied by a high fever (over 101°F). If you are concerned about your condition, seek medical attention immediately.

Home Remedies for Stomach Bug Twice in Two Weeks

If you think you have stomach bug twice in two weeks, then here are some simple home remedies that may help: Drink plenty of water and eat plain yogurt with honey or fruit juice. Avoid spicy foods such as onions, garlic and curry. Eat a small amount of raw vegetables like carrots and celery every day. You may also chew on a piece of fresh ginger root. Try to stay away from milk products and greasy foods since they may cause diarrhea.

Always wash your hands before preparing or eating meals.

Prolonged stomach bug is often an indication of a more serious condition such as food poisoning, colitis or an intestinal infection. If you do not see signs of improvement within three days, or if your symptoms worsen, seek medical attention immediately.

How Long Does It Take to Caught Stomach Virus?

People often confuse the stomach virus with the common cold. The main difference is that colds are caused by viruses, while the stomach bug is caused by bacteria. The Stomach virus causes a lot of fluid loss. Many people confuse the syndrome with a hangover since it involves similar symptoms: nausea, vomiting, headache, fever and diarrhea. The stomach virus usually clears up in 1 to 3 days. The sooner you can get your child to bed and keep him or her there, the quicker he or she will start feeling better. In most cases, home remedies can help you get through this illness.

How Long Does It Take Stomach Virus to Go Away?

It is very important that you drink plenty of water during this illness. You can also treat yourself with certain over-the-counter medications. You should start to feel better within 3 days, but there is no way of knowing if you have contracted HUS (see Causes). It is important that you seek immediate medical attention if you experience any of the following:

Blood in your stools or urine

High fever (temps higher than 103°F)

Dizziness and confusion

Decreased urination

Sudden weight loss

Stomach pain that feels like a knife is stabbing you

If you experience the above symptoms, you may be developing a serious condition called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). It is a disease of the kidneys that can cause permanent damage or even death. If you experience any of the above symptoms, you may need to go on dialysis or receive a kidney transplant.

Stomach Virus Prevention: What You Should Know

The stomach flu is caused by viruses, so antibiotics won’t help (and they also cause their own set of side effects, so they aren’t recommended anyway). You can get a vaccine (shot or nasal spray) to lessen your chances of getting it. The vaccine is only recommended for people in high-risk groups:

Children between 6 and 59 months old

Pregnant women

Older adults

People with certain medical conditions (like kidney disease, blood disorders or cancer)

People who live and care for those in high-risk groups

The vaccine is about 60% effective. This means that if 100 people get the vaccine, only 60% of them (or less, depending on whether any of them are in a high-risk group and thus should definitely get it) will be protected. It takes about 2 weeks after the vaccine for your body to build up antibodies to fight off the virus.

To reduce your chances of getting the stomach flu, you should:

Wash your hands frequently. This is the single best way to avoid getting sick. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer works, too.

Try to avoid close contact with people who are sick (especially people who are vomiting or have diarrhea)

Eat healthy and nutritious foods. To prevent dehydration, make sure you’re getting enough liquids in your diet.

Finally, if you begin experiencing the symptoms of the stomach virus, you should rest as much as possible and drink plenty of fluids (water is best). You can also take over-the-counter medication such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil). You should start feeling better within 2 to 3 days.

If you are developing more serious symptoms (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, high fever, decreased urination or confusion), see your doctor immediately. In some cases, this can be a sign of HUS.

Stomach Virus Summary

Stomach viruses are very contagious and you can get them from contact with people, or from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.

The symptoms of stomach viruses are abrupt onset of nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and sometimes low-grade fever. These symptoms typically go away within 2 to 3 days but there is a small chance that complications could occur.

You can protect yourself from stomach viruses by washing your hands and trying to avoid close contact with people who are sick. If you feel symptoms beginning, you should rest and re-hydrate yourself.

Do you have any questions about the stomach virus?

Please leave it in the comments section below. We reply to all questions.

Sources & references used in this article:

Chained to the desk: A guidebook for workaholics, their partners and children, and the clinicians who treat them by BE Robinson – 2014 –

Diagnosis, treatment, and long-term management of Kawasaki disease: a statement for health professionals from the Committee on Rheumatic Fever, Endocarditis … by JW Newburger, M Takahashi, MA Gerber, MH Gewitz… – Circulation, 2004 – Am Heart Assoc

Sleeping Through the Night, Revised Edition: How Infants, Toddlers, and Parents can get a Good Night’s sleep by RS Mendelsohn – 1987 – Ballantine Books

Antiviral agents for the treatment and chemoprophylaxis of influenza—recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) by A Fadiman – 2012 – Macmillan

The immigrant Haitian mother: Transcultural nursing perspective on preventive health care for children by JA Mindell – 2010 –

Caring for your baby and young child by A Eisenberg, H Murkoff, S Hathaway – 2009 – Workman Publishing