With colder weather approaching, people are being advised of the steps they should take if they are struck down by norovirus.

Also called the winter vomiting bug, norovirus causes diarrhoea, vomiting and flu like symptoms and is highly contagious - so infected individuals should minimise contact with other people to prevent its rapid spread.

Although people usually recover without treatment in between 24 and 72 hours, it is important they stay away from work, school, college, hospital or any social gatherings until they have been free of symptoms for at least 48 hours.

Councillor Sandra Samuels, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "Norovirus is highly contagious and can spread rapidly anywhere that people are gathered, such as schools or offices, especially during colder months.

"So it is very important that people think carefully about going into work or school, or visiting public places like hospitals, if they or anyone in their family has had even mild symptoms of stomach upset which could potentially be caused by norovirus."

People with norovirus should rest at home, and take plenty of non caffeinated drinks to avoid dehydration. Over the counter medicines, such as rehydration powders and paracetamol can also help to alleviate symptoms.

Anyone who is worried about their symptoms should not visit their GP or hospital, but instead call NHS 111 or speak to their local pharmacist.

Good hand hygiene can help to limit the spread of norovirus. People should wash their hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water, disinfect any surfaces or objects that could be contaminated with norovirus, flush away any infected faeces or vomit and wash any clothing or linen which could have become contaminated.

For more information and advice about winter illnesses, visit Type=links;Linkid=6641;Title=Stay Well This Winter;Target=_blank;.

  • released: Thursday 5 November, 2015