”ORT does not cure diarrhea, it only treats dehydration that often accompanies it. ”

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Emobileclinic Reporter: Dr. Tomi Orungbe

Diarrhea refers to the passage of loose or watery stool, an increased in the frequency and consistency of bowel movement which varies with child’s age and diet. The most common cause of diarrhea is viral infection. Others are bacterial infections, reaction to drugs to name a few. Diarrhea often lead to dehydration and you must note the following;

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  • that dehydrated children require rehydration (replacement of lost fluid) and oral rehydration solutions are the most appropriate. ORT does not cure diarrhea, it only treats dehydration that often accompanies it. Medications such as antibiotics may be used in cases of bacterial infections.

  • that children who are not dehydrated should continue to eat regular diet and infants who are on breast feed should continue to do so unless the mother is told otherwise.

  • that oral rehydration solutions can be given in frequent small quantity with spoon, bottle or cup within 3-4hours interval in a day.

  • that Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT)  is a safer, easier and less expensive alternative to intravenous fluids. It contains glucose (sugar) and electrolytes (sodium, potassium, chloride) that are lost in children with diarrhea.

  • that proper hand washing with soap before and after any activity that involves the use of hands is required.

  • that is important to maintain clean environment for proper hygiene

  • that regular washing of baby’s utensil will go a long way to prevent diarrhea

  • that sterilizing baby utensil is good.

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Above all is to be vigilant to observe any unusual in your baby’s routine. A visit to the pediatrician is required for proper management.

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