What to do with food poisoning

Food poisoning is an acute digestive disorder caused by the use of substandard or toxic foods and beverages.


  • Foodborne diseases (PTI). They arise because of eating food contaminated with pathogenic microorganisms. For example, stale products. Also provoke PTI may be non-compliance with sanitary and hygienic standards.
  • Toxic (non-infectious) poisoning. Occur when ingested with food natural or chemical toxins. For example, the poison of inedible fungi and plants, as well as chemicals.

The last type of poisoning is the most dangerous. Do not fight them yourself. If a non-infectious nature of poisoning is suspected, see a doctor right away.

Also, regardless of the type of poisoning, qualified medical care is needed for pregnant and lactating women, children and the elderly.

But usually people face toxic infections that can be cured at home. Next, it will be about what steps to take to independently cope with the PTI.

Symptoms and pathogenesis

The course of foodborne disease depends on the age and general condition of a person, as well as the type of pathogenic bacteria. But the general picture is this:

  • obtrusive nausea;
  • repeated vomiting;
  • weakness, malaise;
  • a changed complexion;
  • diarrhea;
  • chills;
  • elevated body temperature.

PTI has a short incubation period. The first signs appear 2-6 hours after ingestion and progress quickly without treatment.


Step 1. Gastric lavage

When the first symptoms appear, you need to remove the remains of toxic food from the body. To do this, wash the stomach. The algorithm of actions is the same as when providing first aid.

  1. Prepare a weak solution of potassium permanganate (potassium permanganate) or baking soda (for 1.5-2 liters of water at room temperature, 1 tablespoon of soda).
  2. Drink some solution.
  3. Call for vomiting (with two fingers, press down on the root of the tongue).
  4. Repeat the procedure several times until the vomit becomes clean.

Step 2. Reception of sorbents

Sorbents are drugs that help to remove toxins from the body. The most famous of them is activated carbon.

Activated carbon reduces the absorption of gastrointestinal toxins, salts of heavy metals, alkaloids and other harmful substances, and also promotes their removal from the body.

Dosage for poisoning: one tablet for every 10 kg of body weight.

In other words, if you weigh 70 kg, then you will need at least seven tablets. In severe cases, dosage should be increased.

When poisoning coal is better to take in the form of an aqueous suspension. To do this, mash the tablets and mix with 100 ml of boiled water at room temperature. The taste of this mixture is quite nasty, but it effectively fights poisoning.

Also, instead of the usual one, you can use white coal. It is believed that this is an elective, concentrated sorbent. It not only removes toxins, but also preserves nutrients. In this case, the dosage is halved: for an adult, 2-4 tablets, depending on the degree of poisoning.

Instead of coal, you can use other sorbents (as instructed). For example, Smektu, Laktofiltrum, Enterosgel and others.

Step 3. Copious Drinking

Vomiting and diarrhea greatly dehydrate the body – you need to fill the fluid loss and maintain the water balance.

Drink at least 2-3 liters of boiled water per day.

It is recommended to pour water on it: 1 liter of table salt of sodium chloride per liter of water. The salt solution can be alternated with sweet, weak tea.

You can also take special rehydration drugs: “Regidron”, “Oralit” and others. These are powders and solutions containing mineral salts and glucose and preventing dehydration.

Other medicines

As for taking other drugs for toxic infections, there are several general rules:

  • When active vomiting stops, you can use drugs that restore the intestinal microflora (“Hilak forte”, “Linex”, “Mezim” and others).
  • If the temperature rises above 37.5 degrees, it must be brought down by antipyretic drugs (paracetamol, ibuprofen and others).
  • Do not take painkillers: they can complicate the diagnosis in case of complications.
  • Antimicrobials (mainly antibiotics) are used in severe cases of toxic infection and are prescribed exclusively by a doctor.

Step 4. Mode and diet

With food infection, the patient feels a strong weakness. It is necessary to adhere to bed rest and first day to refuse to eat (if the appetite is broken and the body rejects food).

On the second or third day you can afford jelly, crackers (without poppy, raisins, vanilla and any other additives), as well as liquid mashed potatoes or gherkins porridge cooked on the water.

As active treatment, symptoms recede – the improvement should come in a few hours. Finally, the body comes back to normal, usually within three days. But for a few more days, pains in the abdomen, weakness, flatulence can persist.

If the main symptoms (diarrhea, vomiting, fever) do not decrease and do not last more than six hours from the start of treatment, consult a doctor.

Step 5. Prevention

No one is insured against food-borne infections. But everyone can reduce their risk to a minimum.

  1. Wash your hands before eating.
  2. Keep clean in the kitchen, observe cooking techniques.
  3. Store the food correctly.
  4. Be demanding on the quality of products when buying. For example, do not buy fish with an ammonia scent and a “rusty” coating. (All recommendations on the choice of fish here.)
  5. Do not eat in dubious gastronomic establishments, do not drink tap water.
Observe these and other precautions and be healthy!