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Posted by: OFT Food Safety & Injury Lawyers

You can take some over-the-counter medications for food poisoning – depending on your symptoms – but you should always seek medical care because it can get worse quickly.

OFT Food Safety & Injury Lawyers can handle any food poisoning case, including yours. Our clients have recovered millions of dollars in food poisoning settlements and verdicts. Call us today at (888) 828-7087 to learn more about your legal rights as a victim of food poisoning.

The most important thing to do if you’re suffering from food poisoning is to replace lost fluids and electrolytes and prevent dehydration, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. OTC medicines may improve your symptoms in some cases, but they shouldn’t be used in every case, and they’re not a cure.

What You Should Do If You Have Food Poisoning

You may vomit after you eat, have diarrhea, or lose your appetite for a short time if you have food poisoning. When your appetite returns, you can probably return to eating as you usually do. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest you get medical attention if your symptoms are severe:

  • Bloody diarrhea
  • High fever – more than 102°F, measured in your mouth
  • Frequent vomiting preventing you from retaining liquids, which risks dehydration
  • Signs of dehydration are little or no urination, a very dry mouth, and throat, or feeling dizzy when standing up
  • Diarrhea lasting more than three days

You Must Keep Hydrated

If you’re dealing with food poisoning, you must replace lost fluids and electrolytes to prevent or treat dehydration. Drink plenty of liquids. If you’re vomiting, sip small amounts of clear liquids. Keeping hydrated is the most important thing you can do for food poisoning. You can drink:

  • Water
  • Diluted fruit juices
  • Sports drinks
  • Broths

Eating saltine crackers may replace lost electrolytes.

Older adults, those with an impaired immune system, and adults suffering severe diarrhea or dehydration should drink oral rehydration solutions – liquids that contain glucose and electrolytes. Brand names for these products include Pedialyte, Naturalyte, Infalyte, and CeraLyte.

If your child has food poisoning, contact your pediatrician. He or she may suggest you give your child an oral rehydration solution. Infants should drink breast milk or formula as usual.

OTC, Prescription Drugs, and Hospital Treatment

Adults can take OTC medicines such as loperamide – Imodium – and bismuth subsalicylate – Pepto-Bismol, Kaopectate – to treat diarrhea in some food poisoning cases. Their use may be dangerous for infants and children, so talk with your pediatrician before giving your child these medications. Adults with bloody diarrhea or a fever – signs of a bacterial infection or parasites – should not use OTC treatments. You should seek medical care instead.

Food poisoning caused by bacteria or parasites is treated with antibiotics or medications that target parasites, in addition to rehydration solutions. Probiotics may also be used. They are live microbes, most often bacteria, that may be similar to those you normally have in your digestive tract.

Hospital treatment may be needed when there are life-threatening symptoms, and complications like severe dehydration, paralysis, or hemolytic uremic syndrome – when small blood vessels in your kidneys become damaged and inflamed.

Contact an OFT Lawyer for Help

We understand what families experience when dealing with the aftermath of severe food poisoning. You can trust our team of experienced, empathetic food safety lawyers to help you and your family. We have helped thousands of clients in the past, and we can help you too.

Call us at (888) 828-7087 today to learn more about how we can best serve you and your family.

Notable Recoveries

$10 million

Seven infants were sickened after consuming a contaminated food product marketed to infants

$6.5 million

Verdict on behalf of a little boy who contracted a severe Salmonella infection from chicken

$7.55 million

Verdict on behalf of a little girl who contracted E. coli at a petting zoo

$2.25 million

E. coli infections contracted from a major fast food chain

$45 million

An over-the-counter medication caused severe kidney damage to multiple users

$3.4 million

A pregnant woman contracted a Listeria infection from contaminated fruit and passed the infection to her child

$3 million

Multistate Cyclospora outbreaks


A couple contracted Salmonella from a restaurant


A pedestrian was struck by a left-turning car, fracturing her tibia


A semi-truck rear-ended a motorcyclist causing a collapsed lung, rib fractures and road rash