Parent's Guide: Soothing Your Child's Upset Stomach

Explore the signs, remedies, and proactive measures to handle stomach infections in children. There are a few practical tips and home remedies that can soothe out child' upset stomach like the BRAT diet, Ginger tea and probiotics.

Harleen Kaur
New Update
Parent's Guide: Soothing Your Child's Upset Stomach

Parent's Guide: Soothing Your Child's Upset Stomach

As a mother, comforting my child during bouts of an upset tummy has become one of my primary tasks, occurring roughly every 4-6 months. Especially during the toddler phase when they seem to explore the world through taste, dealing with stomach discomfort becomes a common occurrence for us parents. Understanding the symptoms and having strategies to reduce the discomfort of mild stomach infections at home is crucial.

Understanding Stomach Infections in Children

Stomach infections, often caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites, manifest through symptoms like diarrhoea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and occasionally fever. These symptoms disrupt normal digestion and nutrient absorption in children.

Common Symptoms in Toddlers and Young Children Include:

  • Diarrhoea: Increased frequency of loose or watery stools, often accompanied by changes in colour or consistency.

  • Vomiting: Frequent vomiting, if not managed, can lead to dehydration.

  • Abdominal Pain: Complaints of discomfort, cramps, or generalized stomach pain, sometimes expressed as fussiness or irritability in younger children.

  • Fever: Mild to moderate fever often accompanies stomach infections in children.

  • Loss of Appetite: Reduced interest in eating or drinking due to stomach discomfort or nausea.

  • Dehydration Signs: Keep an eye out for reduced urine output, dry mouth, sunken eyes, or lethargy.

  • Fatigue: Children might feel tired or weak due to their body's efforts to combat the infection.

  • Behavioural Changes: Noticeable shifts in behaviour, such as increased fussiness, irritability, or a general feeling of unwellness.

Managing Stomach Infections at Home

The good news is, that most stomach infections in children can be managed at home without antibiotics. Viral infections, in particular, are resolved within a few days with proper care. Here are steps to manage such infections at home:

  • Fluid Replacement: Encourage your child to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration. Oral rehydration solutions (ORS) or electrolyte solutions are beneficial, especially during vomiting or diarrhoea. If the child's stomach pain is accompanied by vomiting, do not feed her any solids; let her be on a liquid diet until the pain subsides.

MOMS TIP - If your child doesn't like having ORS, give water in any form, I preferred Limca because my child never liked ORS. 

  • BRAT Diet: Introduce the BRAT diet (Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, Toast) to ease stomach discomfort and provide easily digestible nutrients, which can help bind stool. 

The BRAT Diet: Who Can Try, Foods To Avoid.

MOMS TIP- Reduce milk products, dairy, fatty foods like fried and spicy.

  • Probiotics: Consider yoghurt or probiotic supplements to restore a healthy balance of gut bacteria. These can aid digestion and strengthen the immune system. However, consult a paediatrician or healthcare professional for proper dosage and usage, which may include products like Enterogermina or Econorm sachets.

Giving Hing (Asafoetida) to Babies: Safety, Benefits & Precautions

  • Ginger: Use ginger tea or ginger ale (non-carbonated) to soothe an upset stomach and reduce nausea.

8 Home Remedies for Intestinal & Stomach Infection - Tua Saúde

MOMS TIP - I prefer regular ginger tea (with milk ) for my child to alleviate the discomfort because my child doesn't like the taste of ginger tea itself. 

  • Use Asafoetida:  Asafoetida or hing is an effective remedy for stomach pain in toddlers. It eases stomach pain by aiding the release of gases from the body. Mix some hing powder in water to make a paste and apply it around the child’s belly button.

MOMS TIP- I keep Mama Earth's thing roll-on handy to apply when my child complains about stomach pain or I feel she is constipated and is not comfortable. 

  • Rest: Ensure your child gets plenty of rest to aid their recovery process.

  • Good Hygiene: Emphasize proper handwashing to prevent infection spread. Maintain cleanliness, particularly in food preparation areas at home.

While these remedies can alleviate discomfort, they may not cure the infection itself. Seek prompt medical attention if your child's symptoms persist, worsen, or if signs of dehydration become evident (such as dry mouth, absence of tears when crying, or decreased urine output).


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