E. coli is the leading cause of bloody diarrhea and can be extremely painful and frightening. It is also very contagious so that a child suffering from this condition should not return to day care or to school until a doctor has approved of their return. Marked by a sudden onset of painful abdominal cramps followed by watery stools, diarrhea and finally, bloody diarrhea, E. Coli is mainly caused by contaminated meat.
It is short for Escherichia coli -- a bacteria (germ).
Most E. coli infections come from the following:
undercooked or raw, contaminated beef
contaminated or untreated water
In order to reduce the risk of contracting E. Coli, please handle all meat according to safety guidelines, washing your hands before and after handling and always handling on a clean surface. Cooking your meat thoroughly and avoiding raw milk may also help.
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Aimee Boyle lives, works and writes in CT with her two boys, her dog and her loving husband.