What is Norovirus?
Norovirus is an extremely contagious virus that causes gastrointestinal illness. It’s important to know the facts about norovirus in order to protect yourself and others from getting this virus. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), you can become infected with norovirus from eating contaminated food, touching contaminated surfaces, or coming in contact with someone who is currently infected.
Symptoms of Norovirus Infection
Common symptoms of a norovirus infection include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramping, and body aches. A low-grade fever and chills can also occur. Symptoms usually begin 12-48 hours after exposure and can last anywhere from 12-60 hours.
The best way to prevent norovirus is by practicing good hand-washing habits. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water before eating, preparing food, and after using the bathroom. Additionally, it is important to wash your fruits and vegetables thoroughly before eating them. If you are sick, it is important to avoid preparing food or drinks for others while you are ill and for at least 3 days after symptoms stop.
Unfortunately, there is no specific medicine or vaccine to treat norovirus infection. Instead, the infection should be managed by drinking plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration, eating bland foods, and taking over-the-counter medications for the symptoms. In more severe cases, a doctor may prescribe antibiotics.
Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that can be easily spread from person to person. By practicing good hygiene and following the preventive tips above, you can help protect yourself and others from becoming infected. If you do experience any symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention in order to properly manage the illness.