What to look out for
Vomiting and diarrhoea can happen on their own, or together. When they happen together, it is called gastro-enteritis. Gastro-enteritis is caused by a tummy bug, usually from contaminated food or close contact with someone who already has symptoms. Vomiting usually lasts between 6 and 12 hours while diarrhoea can last from 24 to 48 hours.
Watch our video about how to tackle a tummy bug.
What can you do
Stay home from work and rest. Do not eat until 6 hours after the last episode of vomiting. Keep taking sips of clear fluid such as flat (not fizzy) white lemonade, sports drinks or oral rehydration solutions which you can get without prescription in your pharmacy.
Wash your hands after vomiting to avoid spreading the infection to others.
It is best not to return to work until at least 12 hours after you have stopped vomiting, especially if you handle food, work in healthcare or have contact with the public.
When to seek help
Contact your doctor if:
- vomiting lasts more than 12 hours
- you notice blood in the vomit
- you have bad tummy pain with the vomiting
- you cannot keep down any liquids
- you are on medication for another condition and can’t take it because of the vomiting
- you are worried about the vomiting
As you can probably guess, this website can’t replace the advice you might get from a health professional. If you are worried, please call or visit your GP or pharmacist.