Babysitting: Dealing With Vomiting

Vomiting can be a common symptom of many things; most often, it's caused by a stomach virus.

A child can lose fluids, salts, and minerals from vomiting so it's important to keep the child hydrated. Let the parents know if their child has vomited, especially if he or she also cannot keep clear fluids down.

What to Do

If a younger child is vomiting:

  • Every 15 minutes, give the child 1-2 tablespoons of an electrolyte solution, clear broth, or diluted juice. You can also offer an ice pop.
  • If the child vomits after drinking the electrolyte solution, clear broth, or diluted juice, wait 20-30 minutes and start over.

If an older child is vomiting:

  • Give clear fluids such as water, electrolyte solution, or clear broth. Be sure the child drink the fluids slowly.

To help prevent vomiting:

  • Make sure kids wash their hands after using the bathroom or playing outside.
  • Avoid overfeeding, especially in babies.

Reviewed by: Kate M. Cronan, MD
Date reviewed: January 2011

Kids Health

Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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