Contaminated food, predominantly, is held responsible for causing food poisoning. The trigger symptoms of the condition are mentioned in this article, in order to help one detect if an individual is suffering from food poisoning.
Food poisoning — alternately referred to as bacterial gastroenteritis — is the consuming foods attacked by germs that hamper the normal functioning of the system, thereby, affecting the overall health. The most commonly observed sign of food poisoning is diarrhea, and vomiting.
Toxicity through food consumption, predominantly occurs due to bacteria; such as, Staphylococcus, Clostridium perfringens, E. coli, Salmonella, and Listeria. These are the bacteria, in specificity, that infest the food. It can also be caused due to toxoplasmosis, or shigellosis. If a person consumes dairy products, or foods kept in a refrigerator for long, salads or vegetables cut and left exposed for a considerable period, unwashed greens and vegetables, and undercooked meat, there are higher probabilities of occurrence of food poisoning. Foods containing mayonnaise, such as, coleslaw, or potato salad preserved in the fridge for a long time may cause food poisoning as well.
Indicants of Food Poisoning
The symptoms that are proven indicants of food poisoning depend upon the degree, and provenance of adulteration. These signs may catch hold of your system in a matter of hours, or may work its intensity through days, and show up after a few weeks have lapsed. However, there are certain signature symptoms that indicate that one is suffering from food poisoning. Constant dizziness and nausea, making movement difficult, vomiting with an increased frequency of belching, diarrhea with abdominal spasms, muscle contractionaccompanied with a rise in body temperature, cold and pale skin, sunken eyes, and low blood pressure are sign contributions that attest food toxicity as the prime reason.
Seeking Medical Assistance
The symptoms may subside in a day or two, or may extend up to 10 days. If this is the case, do not hesitate to call the doctor. Schedule an appointment with your doctor, before the sickness assumes an ugly turn. Instances that ought to draw you toward the phone are as follows –
- Recurrent bouts of vomiting;
- Throwing up the contents with traces of blood;
- Pustule-like sacs of blood found in stool;
- Diarrhea proving its severity by continuing for a period of 2 to 3 days;
- Excruciatingly painful abdominal cramps;
- A drastic dip in appetite;
- Disturbed sleep, leading to somnolence throughout the day;
- Difficulty in breathing;
- Compromising on vision; the environment is accredited to being doleful, and indolent;
- Increased body temperature marked at 101° C, accompanied with chills.
- Muscles contracting, thereby, causing weakness and fatigue;
- Tingling feeling in the peripheries of the mouth;
- No or little urine;
- Swallowing becomes difficult as the mouth feels parched;
- Contrarily, there may also be an excess secretion of saliva;
- Articulating sentences becomes a task due to the individual feeling weak.
Are you at Risk?
There is no criterion as such, calculated to measure the degree of risk one assumes. However, there are specific sections, and scenarios that, insofar, are susceptible to food poisoning. Children, and the aged, are the sections recorded highest on the risk scale. Conditions that estimate a role to accelerate the risk of developing food poisoning are as follows
- A weak immune system, where the major indicator is the frequency with which infections strike you;
- Pregnant women are also found to fall prey to food poisoning;
- If you are on a heavy dose of medication, like, antibiotics or steroids;
- If you spend a good amount of time in a miasma of cigarette smoke, or a mucky and damp environment with a noxious stench;
- Serious medical conditions, concerning the liver, and kidney may contribute to the risk factor as well.
Ways to Prevent Food Poisoning
- Consume foods that are washed thoroughly, and cooked well.
- Always wash your hands before you consume food.
- Cover the containers with a lid so as to curb infringement of flies, and subsequent bacteria.
- If you plan to travel to a destination you have never visited before, make sure you carry packaged drinking water.
- Keep non-vegetarian items — especially fish — refrigerated.
- Eating vegetables, or fruits that have not been washed well, and peeled thereafter, should be stringently avoided.
The signs of food poisoning must be taken into serious account as these indicants may lead to grave consequences. Most of the time, the condition can be handled without rigorous medical intervention. However, you must ensure that the symptoms are effectively stubbed without any delay.
Note: This article published herein, is meant to accomplish pedagogical purposes only. The information, by no means, intends to supplant the diagnosis, and advice imparted by the medical practitioner.