Don't prepare food for 48 hours to avoid spreading vomiting bug, sufferers told
People affected by the vomiting bug norovirus should avoid preparing food for two days to avoid spreading it to others, experts have warned.
Public Health England (PHE) has issued advice on the highly contagious bug, which tends to peak in the winter months.
While current cases of the bug - which can cause sudden nausea, projectile vomiting, diarrhoea and abdominal pain - are at expected levels, cases tend to rise as it gets colder.
People are being urged to help reduce the spread of the bug by thoroughly washing hands with soap and warm water on a regular basis, including before eating or preparing food and after going to the toilet.
Anyone who gets the bug should stay away from places like hospitals and care homes and avoid preparing food for 48 hours.
They should also avoid close contact with other people to reduce the spread of norovirus.
Nick Phin, national infection service deputy director at PHE, said: "Norovirus can be unpleasant and is easily passed on to those around you.
"Most people get over it within a day or two but in the very young, elderly or those who have weakened immune systems it can last longer and it is easy to get dehydrated, so it is important to drink plenty of fluids to prevent this.
"It is transmitted by touching hands or surfaces that the virus has landed on. All surfaces should be thoroughly disinfected after any episode of illness.
"Those who have diarrhoea and vomiting should not prepare food until 48 hours after symptoms have disappeared.
"We advise that they should avoid visiting GP surgeries, care homes and hospitals if they have symptoms. If anyone has symptoms and is concerned they should contact NHS 111 or talk to their GP by phone."