Norovirus is considered as the most prevalent virus that causes gastroenteritis. It is known for causing outbreaks of vomiting and diarrhea among those in cruise ships but can also occur in daycare centers and schools.
Among very young children, the norovirus can be dangerous. It is also the main cause of foodborne-ailments.
What are the signs?
The symptoms of norovirus are strikingly the same as gastroenteritis such as watery diarrhea and vomiting that can later lead to dehydration.
Other symptoms that might be present include:
- Stomach cramping
- Body aches
- Low-grade fever
In most cases, an adult or child becomes sick around 12-48 hours after being exposed to the norovirus by direct exposure to a sick individual, contact with something contaminated by the virus or consumption of contaminated food.
Luckily, most can recover rapidly from diarrhea and vomiting in just 1-3 days. The symptoms might last longer, oftentimes up to 4-6 days among young children and elderly who are likely to become severely sick with the norovirus.
Remember that there is no available cure for norovirus infections, thus it is vital to strictly observe preventive measures before they occur.
Preventing the spread of norovirus while sick as well as avoiding acquiring one can be done with the following:
- Regular hand washing using water and soap
- Thoroughly wash vegetables and fruits before eating
- Avoid raw oysters
- Surfaces must be disinfected using a bleach-based household cleaning if contaminated
- An individual with the infection must avoid preparing and cooking food for others after the symptoms of norovirus has settled for at least 3 days which is the period that he/she is no longer contagious
- Avoid swimming in pools if recently had diarrhea
More Information / Disclaimer
The information posted on this page on norovirus is for learning purposes only. Learn to recognize the signs and how it is managed by taking a standard first aid course with Vancouver First Aid.