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In the UK, norovirus is one of the most common stomach bugs that cause diarrhoea and vomiting in many people. Despite the fact that it can be caught at any time during the year, it is known as the ‘winter vomiting bug’ because it tends to be more prevalent during winter.
Although a norovirus infection can be very unpleasant, it usually clears up within a few days on its own.
There may be a sudden onset of signs and symptoms of a norovirus infection, and these include:
Feeling of nausea
Pain in the stomach or cramps in the stomach
Diarrhoea that is watery or loose in consistency
Having a feeling of being unwell
A low-grade fever may be present in some people.
As a rule, the signs and symptoms of a norovirus usually appear 12 to 48 hours after your first exposure, and they typically last between one and three days. However, there is a possibility that you will continue to shed a virus in your stool for several weeks after you have recovered.
Some people may not show any symptoms or signs of norovirus infection while they are infected. It is important to keep in mind, however, that they are still contagious and can spread the virus to other people.
Hospitals, nursing homes, and schools are some of the places in which Norovirus can spread very quickly.
Getting infected with this disease is as simple as ingesting small particles of vomit or stool (poo) from an infected person through the following:
- If you are in close contact with someone who is suffering from norovirus, it is possible that they may exhale small particles of the virus that you will then inhale
- When you touch a contaminated surface or object, you may get infected since the virus can survive outside your body for several days
- It is possible to become infected by eating contaminated food, which can happen if someone who is infected does not wash their hands before preparing or handling food.