Gastroenteritis is a very common condition that causes diarrhoea and vomiting. It's usually caused by a bacterial or viral tummy bug.

It affects people of all ages, but is particularly common in young children.

Most cases in children are caused by a virus called rotavirus. Cases in adults are usually caused by Winter vomiting disease (the "winter vomiting bug") or bacterial food poisoning .

Gastroenteritis can be very unpleasant, but it usually clears up by itself within a week. You can normally look after yourself or your child at home until you're feeling better.

Try to avoid going to your GP, as gastroenteritis can spread to others very easily. Call NHS 111 or your GP if you're concerned or need any advice.

This page covers:


What to do if you have it

When to get medical advice

Looking after a child

Getting medical advice for your child

How it's spread


Content supplied by the NHS Website

Medically Reviewed by a doctor on 4 Jan 2017