Preventing stomach bugs (gastroenteritis)
Stomach bugs are very contagious. They are usually caused by viruses or , and spread through droplets of fluid in the air or through contact with infected people or contaminated objects. To avoid , it's important to wash your hands a lot and to keep things very clean, particularly in the kitchen. Rotavirus vaccines are recommended for babies under the age of six months.
The most common cause of stomach bugs in Germany is norovirus. Babies and toddlers often become infected with rotavirus too. Bacterial stomach bugs are also widespread in adults. They are usually caused by contaminated or rotten foods.
It's usually hard to tell which viruses or bacteria caused the stomach bug because many of the symptoms are similar. In many cases people suddenly have severe symptoms such as stomach pain, diarrhea and vomiting, sometimes together with fever. These symptoms usually go away after a few days.
No matter what's causing it, you can reduce the risk of by following a few simple rules when around people who are infected and when preparing food.