IDPH warning Illinois residents of norovirus spread - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

IDPH warning Illinois residents of norovirus spread

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SPRINGFIELD (WREX) -

Norovirus affects millions of people around the country and the Illinois Department of Public Health is spreading the word on how to prevent contracting it.

The peak season for the virus, which causes vomiting and diarrhea, peaks between November and April. It's the most common cause of stomach illness in the United States and is very contagious.

Norovirus spreads quickly in crowded areas like schools, daycare centers, and long-term care facilities. Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, and stomach cramping. Less common symptoms include low-grade fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, and general fatigue.

The virus is usually not serious, with most people recovering within a day or two. However, the virus can be serious in younger children, the elderly, and people suffering from other health conditions. The virus can cause more than 70,000 hospitalizations and 800 death in the U.S. each year.

To avoid norovirus, the IDPH recommends the following tips:

  • Frequent hand washing, especially after using the restroom, before eating, and prior to preparing food
  • Thoroughly cleaning and disinfecting contaminated surfaces with bleach-based cleaner, or with a solution of one-part bleach to nine parts water
  • Frequently cleaning high-touch surfaces like door knobs
  • Food handlers should not work while ill with diarrhea or vomiting

For more information on norovirus, click here.

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