Food poisoning can be very dangerous. It can even lead to death if not treated or dealt with properly and quickly. But how do you know if you have food poisoning? How do you know if what you have is just a mild case of food poisoning or a much more severe disease? Read on to find out how to tell if you have food poisoning.
Food poisoning is a disease that involves the food you eat and the beverages you drink. It is any food-borne illness, meaning it is a disease due to ingestion of contaminated food and/or water. The cause of the contamination can vary.
There are many different causes of food poisoning. Bacteria, fungi, viruses, and toxins can all cause food poisoning if they contaminate your food and water. Different bacteria, viruses, fungi, and toxins have different effects. Some species or types may cause much more sever e cases of food poisoning compared to others.
Symptoms of food poisoning
The easiest way for one to tell whether or not a person has food poisoning is by taking note of the symptoms. As stated earlier, there are many different causes of food poisoning. And because of the variety of pathogens and toxic substances that can contaminate your food, there is also a variety on the symptoms of the disease. This variety in the symptoms of food poisoning is more on the severity of the symptoms, how long they last, and the onset of the symptoms.
There are four common symptoms of food poisoning. These are vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and nausea. These symptoms can be observed in most cases of food poisoning. However, there are also some cases of food poisoning wherein there is no diarrhea involved. Other cases sometimes do not have vomiting as one of their symptoms. But these four symptoms are the most common signs of food poisoning. And in other cases, the symptoms may be of a much sever form, like bloody diarrhea. Other symptoms of food poisoning include fever and chills, headache, and weakness.
The symptoms of food poisoning can last for one to two days or up to two weeks. The onset of food poisoning can be within a few hours to a couple of days after ingesting the contaminated food or water.
Exams and tests
To be sure of whether or not you have food poisoning, you may be subjected under some exams and tests. Your physician will examine you for signs of food poisoning. He/she may also ask you about the food you last ate before the symptoms appeared. Tests may be administered to determine the exact cause of food poisoning. A stool exam is one of the most common tests to determine what type of infection you have. Tests may also be done on your blood and vomit.