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Vomiting is common in sick children and may be caused by a virus or something they ate. Vomiting usually stops in 6 to 24 hours. Changes in the diet will help.

Home Care Instructions

For the baby less than 12 months old

  • Keep breast feeding or formula feeding
  • Formula should be room temperature.
  • If baby continues to vomit:
    • Start with 1 teaspoon of Pedialyte every 5 minutes for an hour.
    • Increase to 2 teaspoons every 5-10 minutes for the next 1-2 hours.
    • If there is no vomiting, slowly add more Pedialyte with each feeding. You may also try breast feeding or formula feeding.
    • Do not give juices. These can upset the stomach and worsen diarrhea.
    • If your baby eats solids, try small amounts first.

For the child 12 months and older

  • Fluids should be clear and room temperature.
  • Give Pedialyte if your child is less than 2 years old. If your child is older than 2 years, try ½ strength Gatorade or ginger ale, Sprite or 7-UP. To make these fluids half strength, add the same amount of water to glass. Stir until the fizz is gone.
    • Start with 1 teaspoon of fluid every 5 minutes for an hour.
    • Increase fluid to 2 teaspoons every 5-10 minutes for the second hour.
    • Slowly add more fluid with each feeding after the second hour.
  • Give your child popsicles if he is old enough.
  • After vomiting has stopped, give your child small amounts of solids. Offer bland foods like: toast crackers scrambled eggs dry cereal If your child does not vomit after eating these foods, try a regular diet. Do not give your child fried or spicy foods for a few days.

When to Call Your Child's Doctor:

  • Vomiting does not stop.
  • Diarrhea starts.
  • Your child shows signs of dehydration:
    • dry, cracked lips
    • no tears
    • no urine for more than 8 hours
    • sunken look around the eyes
    • if the soft spot on baby’s head looks sunken
  • Excessive sleepiness—difficult to waken, limp and weak
  • Dizziness, fainting
  • Mucus or blood in bowel movement
  • Stomach pain and/or a big full stomach
  • Vomit is green or has a bad smell
  • Vomit is bloody or looks like coffee grounds

Always call the doctor if you have questions and concerns.

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.

Reviewed: 9/2007

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