Health Topics


By Dr. Jennifer Blount


  • Continue with breast or formula feeding on demand. If your child is formula-fed, you may consider temporarily changing to a soy or lactose-free formula until the diarrhea resolves. You may supplement your baby’s fluid intake with Pedialyte.
  • DO NOT GIVE juices or milk, which may worsen the diarrhea.
  • IF your baby is normally on solid foods, limit the foods to the “BRAT DIET” – Bananas, Rice cereal, Applesauce (not juice) and dry Toast (OR plain Cheerios or teething crackers).
  • Once the stools are returning to normal, start to re-introduce a regular diet and regular formula.
  • To prevent diaper rash, change the baby quickly after bowel movements, use clear water to wash the diaper area and use zinc oxide or petroleum jelly to provide a thick protective layer on the skin.


  • Offer lots of clear liquids: Pedialyte, Gatorade, Ginger ale, Kool-aid, weak tea or Jello-water. AVOID MILK or JUICES. Soy or Rice milk is OK.
  • IF your child is hungry, offer the BRAT DIETBananas, Rice cereal, Applesauce (not juice) and dry Toast, or foods like saltine crackers, plain Cheerios, rice, pasta without sauce or butter and clear soups like chicken broth.
  • As your child improves, you may slowly normalize the diet, but initially avoid raw fruits and vegetables, beans, greasy or fatty foods (like pizza & tacos), spicy foods and dairy products. A regular diet can be resumed once the stools have returned to near-normal consistency
  • We do NOT recommend the use of over-the- counter anti-diarrhea meds in children.
  • But, you may add natural Probiotics that help replenish the normal healthy bacteria that fight off the viral infection. You may give yogurt or medications like Florastor ( 1 packet twice a day for 5 days) or Lactobaccilus

Children with watery stools, fever, or vomiting should stay home from school and daycare until these symptoms go away. In addition to allowing the child to rest and recover, this also helps prevent other children from becoming ill.

 Remember to use good hand washing to stop the spread of disease.


  • Has bloody diarrhea
  • Has diarrhea lasting longer than 1 week
  • Has severe abdominal pain
  • Has symptoms of dehydration: no urination for over 8 hrs in infants and 12 hours in older children, dry lips, sunken eyes, pale skin and lethargy                                                                                                    

Topics and Subtopics: Children's Health

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