7 Symptoms of Salmonella That You Need to Know

So far, 2018 has seen no less than one dozen outbreaks of salmonella here in the U.S., and no food category is safe. Ten of them have been linked to food items with some of the most recent being raw turkey and Honey Smacks cereal.

The CDC conducted investigations into each of the outbreaks which led to the agency discovering that people were falling ill in multiple states. In many of the reported cases, young children and elderly individuals have been affected and a percentage of patients were also hospitalized.

With all these products being recalled, how do you know if you’ve eaten something that is tainted? There are various strains of salmonella, and a person may or may NOT be symptomatic if infected. Symptoms typically appear within 8 to 24 hours, and can feel like the stomach flu. Learn what they are down below!

Here are some of the most common signs of an infection:

  1. Diarrhea

    It can last anywhere from a couple of days up to ten days or more. In most cases, there will be no blood in the stool.

  2. Abdominal Pain

    Cramping in the stomach region can be extremely severe as a result of the intestinal muscles trying to rid itself of the germ.

  3. Nausea

    Queasiness may or may not occur in patients, but it’s usually accompanied by vomiting.

  4. Vomiting

    Some people will have diarrhea and constant bouts of vomiting, and the illness will feel like a normal stomach bug. It’s important to increase fluid intake in order to prevent dehydration.

  5. Fever

    Roughly 70% of people with salmonella will experience a fever. It usually hovers at around 102 degrees.

  6. Headache

    It’s not uncommon to have a headache as a result of the fever.

  7. Chills

    For some, chills is the first sign of a salmonella infection. They may feel like flashes of hot and cold. Watch out for this with young children!

The CDC states in order to cut down on your chances of being infected with salmonella bacteria, you should take the following precautions:

  • Wash your hands and all cooking surfaces when preparing food, especially raw meat and poultry.
  • Cook eggs and raw meats thoroughly, and do not consume raw dairy products.
  • Wash produce thoroughly and make sure to store it away from raw meats.
  • Do not handle and do not let children handle reptiles or birds as they are highly likely to carry the bacteria.

Salmonella may take a few weeks to clear up. Not everyone requires medical intervention as the infection often clears up on its own. However, children, pregnant women, and the elderly should be seen by a medical professional for proper treatment. Severe cases may require antibiotics.

Are you on alert for salmonella signs? Have you had to dispose of any recalled food products due to salmonella? Do you know anyone who’s ever been ill due to an infection?