Food poisoning

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  1. 1. Food poisoning
  1. 2. You are here: Advice for food poisoning victims

2. Advice for food poisoning victims

Food Poisoning is a general term to cover the symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhoea that occur when contaminated food is eaten or contaminated water is consumed.

The contamination can be by chemicals, bacteria (germs) or toxins created in food by bacteria.

The most common cause of food poisoning is the consumption of food or water contaminated with bacteria.

This usually happens in the summer when the weather it at its warmest and food is not properly refrigerated - giving the bacteria the chance to grow to levels where they can cause symptoms.

However outbreaks occur at other times of the year especially around Christmas when more poultry is served which may not always be thoroughly cooked through.

Food poisoning can also be passed on to close contacts via food.

If you suffer from food poisoning symptoms

You should see your doctor immediately. They will ensure that you get the correct care and advice.

Often they will advise lots of fluid and rest until the symptoms subside. However severe symptoms or cases in the very young or old may need more care.

Your doctor will probably take a specimen and will advise the local Council of their diagnosis. Your local authority may then contact you to try to detect the source of the infection and see that it doesn't spread to others.

  • Don't go back to work with symptoms if you work with food or go to school, nursery or childminders

People who work in food businesses, hospitals or staff and pupils who attend nursery schools must not return to work until 48 hours after all symptoms have ceased.

The manager of the food business must be notified of any illness you or any family member, who is ill, may have. If close contacts in these occupations are suffering symptoms, they should also stop work and pay close attention to personal hygiene requirements.

Please remember that you may still carry the organism for a number of weeks after the symptoms clear and scrupulous personal hygiene must be observed during this time. An anti-bacterial soap will help with thorough cleaning.