Home treatment can help
relieve symptoms and prevent the spread of
hepatitis B virus (HBV).
Reduce your activity to match your
energy. You don't have to stay in bed, but listen to your body. Slow
down when you are tired.
If you are feeling tired at work or school, try to reduce your
As you start to feel better, slowly go back to your regular
activities. If you try to go back to your regular pace too soon, you may
get sick again.
Even though food may not appeal to you, it is
important to eat well. For most people, nausea and loss of
appetite become worse as the day goes on. Try eating a substantial (but not
heavy) meal in the morning and lighter meals later in the
Doctors used to recommend a high-calorie,
protein-rich diet to people who have hepatitis. This is no longer believed to
help. And such foods can be hard to eat when you feel nauseated.
Try to have a balanced diet while eating foods that appeal to you.
It is important to keep
your body well-hydrated when you have hepatitis B, especially if you have been
Drink plenty of water.
If you can
tolerate them, fruit juices and broth are other good choices, because they
provide extra calories.
Many of the "sports drinks" available
in grocery stores can help replace essential minerals (electrolytes)
that are lost during vomiting. You can also make your own
Avoid alcohol and drugs
Hepatitis makes it hard for your liver to process drugs and alcohol. If you take drugs (prescription
or illegal) or drink alcohol when you have hepatitis, their effects may be more
powerful and may last longer. They also can make
liver damage worse.
If you are taking prescription medicines,
your doctor may tell you to stop using them until your
liver has had time to heal. Don't stop taking the medicines unless
your doctor has told you to do so.
your doctor before taking any over-the-counter medicines, including herbal products
and acetaminophen (such as Tylenol). Acetaminophen can make liver disease
worse, especially if you continue to drink alcohol.
Avoid alcohol until your doctor feels that your liver is
completely healed. This may take as long as 3 to 4 months.
Try to control itching
People who have hepatitis
sometimes have itchy skin. You can
control itching by keeping cool and out of the sun,
wearing cotton clothing, or using over-the-counter antihistamines such as Benadryl
or Chlor-Trimeton. Talk to your doctor before taking these medicines.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
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This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
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