How should I care for a vomiting child?

  • For a very young child or infant, lay the child on his or her side so that the child does not swallow or inhale the vomit.
  • Halt solid foods for 24 hours during an illness involving vomiting and replace with clear fluids, such as water, Popsicles, gelatin, or an oral rehydration solution specially designed for children and infants.
  • Introduce liquids slowly. For instance, wait 2 to 3 hours after a vomiting episode to offer the child some cool water. Offer 1 to 2 ounces every half hour, four times. Then alternate 2 ounces of rehydration solution with 2 ounces of water every 2 hours.
  • After 12 to 24 hours with no vomiting, gradually reintroduce the child’s normal diet.
  • For babies less than 12 months of age - give 2-3 tsp. of clear fluids
          gradually over 15 minutes even if they vomit. You may want to use
          a dropper to give the fluids.
  • For children over 12 months of age - give 5-6 tsp. of clear fluids
          gradually over 15 minutes even if they vomit.
  • If your child has problems keeping any fluids down, call his doctor.
  • After your child is able to keep down clear liquids for 6-8 hours,
          gradually begin a soft, bland diet. Give your child foods that he
          usually eats such as bananas, rice, applesauce, pasta without
          butter, crackers and toast. Avoid fatty, fried or spicy foods such as
          ice cream, French fries and pizza.
  • After 12-24 hours without vomiting, gradually increase his diet from a
          soft, bland diet to a normal diet.
  • Do not give your child Pepto Bismol or other medicines to stop diarrhea
          unless advised to do so by your child’s doctor.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.