Treatment for gastroenteritis is mainly rest and staying hydrated. One type of antacid may be helpful for diarrhea.

Gastroenteritis is also known as the stomach flu. It causes nausea, stomach pain, diarrhea, and vomiting. Most people can recover from gastroenteritis at home. Usually, the illness just needs to run its course.

Antacids are a group of medications first developed as a treatment for peptic ulcers. They help neutralize stomach acid and can help with indigestion and heartburn.

Antacids will not help with vomiting due to gastroenteritis. Some types may help reduce diarrhea. This can be helpful if you’re losing too much fluid due to diarrhea.

The main treatments for gastroenteritis are preventing dehydration and rest.

Gastroenteritis is inflammation in your digestive system. Viruses or bacteria often cause it. Diarrhea and vomiting are your body’s way of getting rid of the germs that are making you sick.

That’s why rest and staying hydrated are the main treatments for gastroenteritis. Usually, you won’t need medications to help with vomiting or diarrhea unless you’re losing so much fluid that you’re becoming dehydrated.

One type of antacid is bismuth subsalicylate, which is the active ingredient in products such as Pepto-Bismol or Kaopectate. It has FDA approval to help with diarrhea, nausea, and indigestion.

It may be helpful for diarrhea due to gastroenteritis, especially if you’re losing so much fluid due to diarrhea that you’re having trouble staying hydrated.

Most people with gastroenteritis don’t need medical treatment. Resting will help your body fight the infection. You’ll just have to wait it out.

Some medications can help. If you have a fever, you can treat that with a fever-reducing medication to help you feel more comfortable and get some rest.

If you’re at risk of dehydration, contact a medical professional. This person may recommend that you take medication to manage nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea to help prevent dehydration.

Otherwise, rest and hydration are the most important things. If you’re vomiting, take small sips of clear fluid or suck on ice cubes to help make up for lost fluids.

You probably won’t feel like eating or drinking much when you’ve got gastroenteritis. Loss of appetite is common. If you do feel up to eating, some foods can cause more irritation to your digestive system and might worsen your symptoms.

These include:

  • caffeinated drinks such as soda, coffee, or energy drinks
  • high sugar foods and drinks such as regular juice or soda
  • high fat foods such as fried foods, baked goods, or meat

Most people with gastroenteritis can recover at home and don’t need medical attention.

However, it’s a good idea to get medical attention if you:

  • have bloody diarrhea
  • have severe stomach pain that is getting worse
  • show signs of dehydration, such as feeling lightheaded, peeing less than usual, or your pee is very dark in color

Although it can be very unpleasant to have gastroenteritis, most of the time you’ll start feeling better within a few days. Sometimes, symptoms last longer, but typically you’ll be better in less than a week.

The best things you can do to heal are get plenty of rest and stay hydrated.

What is the best medicine for gastroenteritis?

Gastroenteritis usually just has to run its course. You may not need to take any medications.

If you have a fever, you can take fever-reducing medication to help you feel more comfortable. You won’t usually need medication for nausea and diarrhea unless you’re becoming dehydrated.

If you’re not able to keep anything down and are at risk of dehydration, contact your doctor to check whether medications might be a good idea.

Is Pepcid good for gastroenteritis?

Pepcid’s active ingredient is famotidine. This is a type of acid blocker that reduces the amount of stomach acid. It can be helpful for treating heartburn and indigestion but probably won’t help with symptoms of gastroenteritis.

What not to take for gastroenteritis?

The main treatments for gastroenteritis are rest and fluids. Vomiting and diarrhea are the body’s way to get rid of the germs that are making you sick. You may not need medication.

Often, you just need to let the illness run its course. If your vomiting and diarrhea are severe and you’re becoming dehydrated, seek medical care.

Generally, the best way to treat gastroenteritis is with fluids to prevent dehydration and plenty of rest. Sometimes, medications are helpful to manage vomiting and diarrhea if you’re getting dehydrated.

One type of antacid called bismuth subsalicylate may help to manage diarrhea caused by gastroenteritis.