How to Deal With the Stomach Flu at Home Since You'll Be Stuck There Anyway

We don't have to go into graphic detail about what it's like to have the stomach flu; the mere mention of this particular sickness simultaneously brings immediate grimaces.

"The stomach flu is a viral infection causing inflammation in the stomach and/or intestines, also commonly known as gastroenteritis," says naturopathic doctor Tara Nayak. "It is caused by many different possible viruses with one common factor: They are all highly contagious. These are spread through direct contact with an infected person or contact with infected stool or vomit. This is how the flu spreads so quickly in households, schools, cruise ships, etc."

So while there's not much that you can do to prevent it besides steering clear of anyone who has it and always washing your hands to fight off germs, it's important to go see a doctor for the best treatment options if you happen to get it. "You should go have a blood panel to see your general health status to determine if it is viral or a bacterial infection," says naturopathic Gabrielle Francis.

"If you see blood or pus in your stool or vomit, a trip to the doctor is in order. Stomach flu can linger for up to 10 days, but you cannot go that long without holding food or water," says Nayak. "The longer you feel bad, the more likely you may need to see a doctor. One of the main things to look out for is dehydration. If you are not urinating, sweating, or producing tears or if you feel lethargic, extremely thirsty, or pass out, it's time to go get some IV fluids."

We asked Francis and Nayak for at-home remedies we can make for ourselves when we are too sick to leave the house and what things hinder the recovery process. Scroll down to see what they had to say.