Digestion can be described as a process where the food we eat is broken down into simple molecules and are then absorbed by the cells of our body. Indigestion happens when this process of digestion gets affected because of some underlying problem. Kids have very sensitive digestive system which tends to get upset very easily.
Stomach Problems in Children
- Upset stomach in children mainly arises due to infection caused by some virus, bacteria or parasites. These microbes enter their digestive tract either through contaminated food or water.
- Other causes include any kind of food poisoning, metal poisoning or side effects of strong laxatives that have been used to get relief from constipation.
When the toxins enter the body, they cause irritation in the inner lining and intestines. This condition triggers vomiting and diarrhea. A few more symptoms are observed in children like stomach cramps, fever, loss of appetite, weakness, etc. Diarrhea usually subsides within 3-5 days but weakness and appetite loss may continue to bother them for some more days.
Remedies for Kids
The medicines that are used for the treatment are very bad in taste and hence, most children refuse to take them. For this reason, parents try to treat it with the following home remedies:
Water: Give them plenty of water to drink. There is no better natural solution to the problem than water. It helps to flush out the toxic substances from the digestive system. Moreover, it replenishes the water lost due to diarrhea and thus prevent dehydration.
Ginger: This is an excellent remedy for indigestion that restores normal functioning of the stomach. Ginger stimulates the digestive juice which neutralizes the acids and has a soothing effect. Half a teaspoon of ginger juice should be given to them twice a day until the symptoms subside. If your child finds the taste of the juice terrible, you can mix it up with half teaspoon of honey.
Fresh Fruits: Combination of apple and banana can give relief from the annoying stomach ache associated with it. Steam a few pieces of freshly cut apples for about 5 minutes. Then mash a banana and put all the steamed apple pieces into it. Stir it well and serve it to the child. The fiber and enzymes of the apple and mucous building quality of the banana will heal up their stomach. They also love the fresh flavor of the fruits.
Mint and Lemon: Both these natural substances are good for children. Mint is effective for killing the bacteria present in the digestive tract and lemon will ease off the constipation. Prepare a soup by boiling a few mint leaves in a cup of water and add a lemon slice to it before offering it to the child in the morning.
Yogurt: Most children are fond of yogurt and if you give them as a medicine I am sure they will have it without much complain. Yogurt supplies certain useful bacteria which your child's body might be lacking. If your child suffers from stomach upset quite frequently, then yogurt should be in his or her daily diet.
These remedies will work provided the child is given the right kind of diet. In the initial stage, only liquid diet is suitable. Later on, as the condition improves, some semi-solid food can be given. You have to be careful before giving the solid food as it can relapse the problem. At any point of time, if you feel that the condition of the child is serious, consult a pediatrician. It is not advisable to give any pain relieving medicines or antibiotics to kids unless the doctor has prescribed it.
Disclaimer: This Buzzle article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.