Tommy's PregnancyHub

Diarrhoea and vomiting in pregnancy

Stomach bugs are common in pregnancy. It is very unlikely that your baby will be harmed from a bug lasting less than 48 hours.
Maternity care is still essential during the coronavirus pandemic and services are still running. If you have any concerns about your pregnancy call your GP, midwife, nearest early pregnancy unit or maternity unit.

Stomach bugs can very tiring. Try to look after yourself if you catch one.

Stomach bugs in pregnancy

Here are a few things to do if you have a stomach bug.

  • Don’t panic if you do have diarrhoea and vomiting.
  • Make sure you rest as much as possible.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day.
  • Eat small, light meals if you are hungry and it doesn't make you feel sick.
  • If you don’t eat for 24 hours don’t worry but make sure you drink plenty of fluid.
  • Wash your hands before and after going to the toilet and after vomiting.

When should I see a doctor with diarrhoea and/or vomiting in pregnancy?

See your GP if:

  • the diarrhoea or vomiting does not go away within 48 hours
  • you are unable to keep any fluids down.

If you can’t get to your GP surgery you may be able to organise a telephone appointment.

DO NOT take any medication to stop diarrhoea in pregnancy, such as Imodium, without speaking to your GP, midwife or pharmacist first.

There are many medicines that can be unsafe to take during pregnancy. So it’s always best to ask your doctor, midwife, pharmacist or dentist before you take anything. Find out more about drugs and medicines in pregnancy.

Speak to your GP, midwife or a hospital doctor as soon as possible if you have:

You may have dehydration or a gastrointestinal problem and need treatment.

Vomiting without diarrhoea may also be pregnancy sickness (morning sickness).

NHS Choices Diarrhoea and vomiting (Page last reviewed 16/04/2018 Next review due: 16/04/2021)

Read more

Last reviewed: 28 September, 2018
Next review: 28 September, 2021