Food Poisoning Signs and Symptoms
When you become sick from eating something bad, the symptoms might range from mild to severe. Depending on whatever germ you ingested, you may have various symptoms. The following are the most often seen signs and symptoms of food poisoning.
Irritation in the stomach
It may take hours or days for symptoms to appear after ingesting a contaminated (unsafe) food or beverage. Keep drinking fluids if you are experiencing symptoms of food poisoning such as diarrhea or vomiting to avoid dehydration (not having enough water in your body).
In Case of Food Poisoning, When Should You Seek Medical Attention
If you are experiencing serious symptoms such as the following, see your doctor or healthcare provider:
Diarrhea in blood
Extremely high fever (measured in the mouth at above 102 degrees Fahrenheit)
Inability to keep drinks down because to frequent vomiting (which can lead to dehydration)
A lack or inability to urinate, together with a dry mouth and throat, as well as feeling dizzy while standing up, are all signs of dehydration.
If you have diarrhea that lasts more than three days, call your doctor.
Food Poisoning Can Cause Serious Health Issues and Long-Term Effects
Mild diseases often last a few hours to several days in the majority of individuals. Some diseases, however, need hospitalization, while others result in long-term health issues or even death. Following are some of the consequences of foodborne infections:
Joint inflammation that lasts for a long period of time
Injuries to the brain and nerves
When you have hemolytic uremic syndrome, you have kidney failure (HUS)
Common Food Poisoning Germs: Symptoms and Sources of the Germs
After ingesting some pathogens, you may get unwell within a few of hours. While some may take many days to get you ill, others may take just hours. It includes information on the signs and symptoms of food poisoning, as well as when symptoms first appear and typical food sources where bacteria may be found. It is arranged in the sequence in which the bacteria cause symptoms to manifest themselves.
Acute Staphylococcus aureus (Staph) symptoms appear 30 minutes to 8 hours after exposure and include the following: Nausea, vomiting, and stomach pains are all symptoms of the flu or other illness. Diarrhea affects the majority of individuals, too. Foods that are often found: Slicing meats, puddings, pastries, and sandwiches are examples of foods that are not cooked after handling.
2 to 48 hours after exposure, the following symptoms appear: Watery diarrhea, nausea, stomach pains, vomiting, fever, and chills are all symptoms of a gastrointestinal infection. Foods that are often found: Especially oysters, seafood that has been left raw or undercooked is not recommended.
Bacterial infection caused by the bacteria Clostridium perfringens
6–24 hours after exposure, the following symptoms appear: Stomach pains and diarrhea It usually starts rapidly and lasts for less than 24 hours, unless anything unusual happens. A high incidence of vomiting and fever is rare. Foods that are often found: beef or poultry, particularly huge roasts; gravies; dry or precooked meals; and other such items
6 to 6 days after exposure, the following symptoms appear: vomiting and diarrhea are all symptoms of a stomach bug. Meat, poultry, and eggs that have been left unpasteurized (raw), as well as raw fruits and vegetables, are all common dietary sources for avian flu virus.
There are also more sources, such as backyard poultry, reptiles and amphibians, rats, and other small animals (pocket pets)
After exposure to norovirus, the following symptoms appear 12 to 48 hours later: Nausea and stomach discomfort are common symptoms of diarrhea. Foods that are often found: Water that is dangerous to drink (leafy greens, fresh fruits, shellfish, such as oysters)
Additional sources include the following: An infected individual who comes into contact with infected surfaces.
Double or blurred vision, drooping eyelids, and slurred speech are symptoms of Clostridium botulinum (Botulism), which appear 18 to 36 hours after the first exposure. Swallowing and breathing are difficult, and the mouth is dry. Deficiency of muscle and paralysis With worsening sickness, symptoms begin in the brain and go downward. Foods that are often found: Foods that have been improperly preserved or fermented, often produced at home Illegal booze produced in prisons (pruno).
2 to 5 days after exposure to Campylobacter, the following symptoms appear: Constipation (often bloody), stomach cramps/pain, and fever are all symptoms of a parasite infestation. Raw or undercooked chicken, raw (unpasteurized) milk, and polluted water are some of the most common foodborne illnesses.
E. coli is a bacteria that may cause food poisoning (Escherichia coli)
After exposure, the following symptoms manifest about 3 to 4 days later: Spontaneous vomiting and severe stomach pains, as well as diarrhea (frequently bloody). The majority of persons who are identified with E. coli go on to develop a serious health issue that might lead to death. Raw or undercooked ground beef, raw (unpasteurized) milk and juice, raw vegetables (such as lettuce), raw sprouts, and contaminated water are all common food sources for foodborne illnesses.
Watery diarrhea, lack of appetite, and weight loss are the first symptoms to appear 1 week after exposure. Bloating, nausea, and exhaustion are all symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (irritable bowel syndrome). Raw fruits or vegetables, as well as herbs, are common food sources.
1 to 4 weeks after exposure, the following symptoms manifest themselves. Flu-like symptoms, such as weariness and muscular pains, are common in pregnant women who have a fever. Birth defects and death are possible outcomes of infections acquired during pregnancy.
In addition to fever and muscular pains, some persons (often older folks) may have headaches, stiff neck, disorientation, loss of balance, and convulsions. Raw sprouts, melons, hot dogs, patés, deli meats, smoked fish, and raw (unpasteurized) milk are all examples of common food sources for a raw vegan lifestyle.
Food contamination may occur at any stage of the manufacturing process, including growing, harvesting, processing, storing, transporting, and preparation. Cross-contamination, or the spread of hazardous organisms from one surface to another, is often to blame. This is particularly problematic when it comes to raw, ready-to-eat items like salads and other veggies. Because these foods aren’t cooked, hazardous organisms aren’t eradicated before consumption, potentially resulting in food poisoning.
Food poisoning is caused by a number of bacteria, viruses, and parasites. The table below lists some of the potential pollutants, as well as when you could notice symptoms and how the organism is propagated.
Symptoms begin to appear
Affected foods and transmission methods
2–5 days for Campylobacter
Poultry and meat If animal feces come into touch with the meat surfaces during processing, contamination develops. Unpasteurized milk and tainted water are two more possible causes.
Clostridium botulinum is a bacterium that has been shown to cause botulism
Hours: 12 to 72
Low-acidity home canned foods, inadequately canned commercial goods, smoked or salted seafood, potatoes fried in aluminum foil, and other items stored at excessively high temperatures.
8–16 hours Clostridium perfringens
Meats, stews, and gravies are some of my favorite things to eat. When serving dishes don’t keep meals hot enough or food cools too slowly, this is a common occurrence.
1 to 8 days Escherichia coli
During slaughter, excrement tainted the beef. Undercooked ground beef is a major source of infection. Unpasteurized milk and apple cider, as well as alfalfa sprouts and polluted water, are some of the other causes.
Giardia lamblia is a parasitic worm that has been found in the United States
a week or two
Contaminated water and fresh, ready-to-eat fruit Infected food handlers may transmit the virus.
28 days for hepatitis A
polluted water, raw, ready-to-eat food, and shellfish Infected food handlers may transmit the virus.
9–48 hours Listeria
Hot dogs, luncheon meats, raw vegetables that has not been cleaned, and unpasteurized milk and cheeses. Contaminated soil and water may be used to transmit the disease.
12 to 48 hours Norovirus (Norwalk-like viruses)
polluted water, raw, ready-to-eat food, and shellfish Infected food handlers may transmit the virus.
1–3 days for rotavirus
Produce in its natural state, ready to consume. Infected food handlers may transmit the virus.
a day to three
Flesh, poultry, milk, or egg yolks that have been exposed to raw or infected meat. Survives poor food preparation. Knives, cutting surfaces, and sick food handlers may all transmit the infection.
Raw, ready-to-eat seafood and vegetables Infected food handlers may transmit the virus.
Staphylococcus aureus is a kind of bacteria that causes infections in humans.
Meats and prepared salads, cream sauces, and cream-filled pastries are some of the items available. Hand contact, coughing, and sneezing are all ways for the virus to spread.
1 to 7 days for Vibrio vulnificus
Oysters, mussels, clams, and entire scallops that have been left uncooked or undercooked. Contaminated saltwater may spread it.
Factors of danger
The organism, the quantity of exposure, your age, and your health all influence whether you feel unwell after eating infected food. The following people are in high-risk groups:
Senior citizens Your immune system may not be able to react to infectious organisms as fast or as efficiently as it did when you were younger as you become older.
Women who are expecting a child or are already expecting a child. Food poisoning is more likely during pregnancy because of changes in metabolism and circulation. During pregnancy, your response may be stronger.
Your infant may, on rare occasions, become ill as well.
Young children and infants. Their immune systems aren’t yet ready.
Chronically ill people Your immune response is lowered if you have a chronic illness like diabetes, liver disease, or AIDS, or if you’re getting cancer treatment like chemotherapy or radiation.
Dehydration, or a significant loss of water and vital salts and minerals, is the most prevalent major side effect of food poisoning. Dehydration should not be a concern if you’re a healthy adult who drinks enough to restore fluids lost due to vomiting or diarrhea.
When individuals lose more fluids than they can replenish, they become severely dehydrated. This is especially true for infants, the elderly, and persons with weakened immune systems or chronic diseases. They may need to be admitted to the hospital and given intravenous fluids in this scenario. Dehydration may be lethal in certain circumstances.
For some individuals, some forms of food poisoning might have significant consequences. Among them are:
Infection caused by Listeria. The effects of listeria food poisoning on an unborn fetus might be the most serious. A listeria infection may cause a miscarriage early in a pregnancy. Even if the mother was only slightly unwell at the time, a listeria infection later in pregnancy may result in stillbirth, preterm delivery, or a potentially deadly illness in the baby after birth. Listeria infection in infants may cause long-term brain damage and developmental delays.
E. coli is a kind of bacteria found in the human intestine (E. coli). Hemolytic uremic syndrome may be caused by certain E. coli bacteria. The lining of the small blood veins in the kidneys is damaged by this illness, which may lead to renal failure. This consequence is more likely to affect older persons, children under the age of 5, and those with compromised immune systems. If you fall into one of these risk areas, consult your doctor as soon as you notice any signs of diarrhea, especially if it is excessive or bloody.
To avoid food poisoning at home, take the following precautions:
Hands, utensils, and food surfaces should all be thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis. Before and after handling or preparing food, wash your hands thoroughly with warm, soapy water. Washing utensils, chopping boards, and other surfaces with hot, soapy water is a good idea.
Separate raw and ready-to-eat items in your refrigerator. Keep raw meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish apart from other foods while purchasing, cooking meals, or storing it. Cross-contamination is avoided this way.
Cook foods at a temperature that is safe for consumption. Using a food thermometer is the best method to determine whether foods have reached a safe temperature. Cooking most meals at the proper temperature kills hazardous microbes.
Cook ground beef to 160 degrees Fahrenheit (71.1 degrees Celsius); lamb, pig, and veal steaks, roasts, and chops to 145 degrees Fahrenheit (62.8 C). Preheat oven to 165 degrees Fahrenheit (73.9 C). Check to see whether the fish and shellfish are fully cooked.
Perishable foods should be refrigerated or frozen as soon as possible after purchase or preparation. Refrigerate perishable items within one hour if the room temperature is over 90°F (32.2°C).
Safely defrost food Thawing food at room temperature is not a good idea. Defrosting food in the refrigerator is the safest method of thawing. If you use the “thaw” or “50 percent power” option in the microwave to defrost frozen food, be sure you cook it right away.
If you’re unsure, toss it. Whether you’re not sure if a meal has been properly made, served, or kept, throw it out. Food that has been kept at room temperature for an extended period of time might contain germs or poisons that are resistant to cooking. If you’re not sure about anything, don’t eat it. It might be unsafe to consume even though it seems and smells OK.
For small children, pregnant women and their fetuses, the elderly, and persons with compromised immune systems, food poisoning is highly dangerous and sometimes fatal. These people should take additional care by staying away from the items listed below:
Meat and poultry, raw or rare
Oysters, clams, mussels, and scallops are examples of raw or undercooked seafood.
Foods that may include raw or undercooked eggs, such as cookie dough and homemade ice cream
Alfalfa, bean, clover, and radish sprouts are all examples of raw sprouts.
Ciders and juices that haven’t gone through the pasteurization process
Milk and milk products that have not been pasteurized are available.
Soft cheeses such as feta, Brie, and Camembert, as well as blue-veined and unpasteurized cheeses
Pates and meat spreads that may be stored in the fridge
deli meats, uncooked hot dogs, and luncheon foods