Food-borne illness, or food poisoning, is usually caused by eating undercooked food or food contaminated with bacteria due to poor preparation or handling. Illness is more likely to be contracted among those whose immune systems are weaker including those with underlying chronic illnesses, older people and young children. The symptoms vary from person to person but usually include diarrhoea, stomach pains, vomiting, nausea and dehydration. This may be accompanied by a rapid heartbeat and feeling faint due to lack of food and dehydration. Treating food-borne illness at home is usually sufficient as the symptoms normally ease off after around two or three days. The symptoms can be treated with plenty of rest and drinking plenty of fluids to prevent severe dehydration. Avoid anti-diarrhoeal medication as this will prevent the harmful bacteria from leaving your body. If you see any blood in the stools, call your doctor. If your illness lasts longer than three days then you should also seek medical advice. If you notice blood in the stools within the first 24 hours or you are already suffering from a chronic illness, medical attention should be sought immediately.
How food poisoning can be contracted
Treating food-borne illness is relatively straightforward but the illness itself can cause enormous discomfort. Food establishments must comply with food safety and hygiene legislation to ensure that they have identified all hazards and controlled these hazards. For example, when preparing food, raw meat should be cut and prepared using different tools from those which are used to prepare vegetables or cooked meats. There are also temperature guidelines for cooking and storing food. If these guidelines are not followed, bacteria already present in the food can accumulate to levels which can infect a person who eats the food. Food poisoning may have been contracted at home or you may have eaten in a restaurant or fast food establishment and fallen ill thereafter. If so, someone else may have been at fault. This could be because a member of staff was not trained in food hygiene or preparation or it could be because the potential hazards were not controlled. It could also be a distinct disregard for the potential harm that could be caused by ignoring the food hygiene laws. If you have contracted food poisoning, you may want to claim compensation for your suffering. A compensation claims company like Accident Advice Helpline can assist you with this process. Give us a call to speak to our experts about your case and we will give you some no-obligation advice over the phone.
Date Published: October 1, 2014
Author: David Brown