What is Diarrhea?
Diarrhea is a common condition which occurs when a person suffers from repeated bowel movements which are loose and watery.
As said above, it’s a very common condition and is not considered to be serious.
Most of people get diarrhea once or twice each year. It normally lasts 1 to 3 days, and it can be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) medicines or with some simple home remedies.
Causes of Diarrhea
Generally, diarrhea is caused by a virus infection of your gut. It is also known as intestinal flu or stomach flu.
few common causes of diarrhea include:
- Contaminated food
- Alcohol abuse
- Diseases of the intestines includes Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
- Eating foods that can upset the digestive system
- Infection by bacteria
- Food Posisoning
- laxative abuse
- Allergies to specific foods
- Diabetes Mellitus – Type 2
- Radiation therapy
- Some cancers
- Undergoing surgeries related to the digestive system
- Malabsorption – trouble absorbing certain nutrients
Symptoms of Diarrhea
Common symptoms of diarrhea include:
- Bloated stomach
- Thin / watery stools
- Constant feeling like you need to have a bowel movement
Serious symptoms include:
- Blood / mucus in your stool
- Weight loss
Who is prone to Diarrhea?
- Person suffering from illnesses such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Diabetes Mellitus Type 2
- People taking cancer treatments
- People who are taking certain medications such as laxatives, antacids, drugs that contain magnesium, NSAIDs (like aspirin, Naproxen, Celecoxib, Aceclofenac, Piroxicam and ibuprofen)
- Person who suffer from an intolerance of dairy products
- People facing gluten intolerance problem
- People who often eat greasy fatty foods
- Older people above 60 years who suffer from several digestive disorders
Diagnosis of Diarrhea
If common diarrhea can’t be treated with home remedies the proper diagnosis is required to find out actual reason. doctor may go through following test for diagnosis of Diarrhea.
- Blood test
- Stool test to find out any bacterium or parasite which is causing your diarrhea.
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy / colonoscopy to examine the lining of your colon and provide biopsies if no cause is evident for persistent diarrhea.
Complications of Diarrhea
- Dehydration that may be dangerous for children, elderly people, and people with compromised immune systems.
- Severe abdominal pain
- Blood in stool
- Inability to control the bowel movements
- Severe weakness
- Kidney failure
- Acidosis – too much acid in the blood
Treatment of Diarrhea
- Diarrhea usually treated on its own without treatment or with some home remedies within 2 to 3 days.
- However, if it still persists the doctor may prescribe specific antibiotics if the diarrhea is caused by bacteria or parasites.
- If Diarrhea caused by Virus then antibiotics can’t help.
- Doctor may start intravenous re-hydration to replace the lost fluids and salts in the body in severe cases.
Medicines of Diarrhea
Some OTC medicines can help you feel better.
Two types of medicines relieve diarrhea in different ways:
- Loperamide – slow down the movement of food through your intestines, which lets your body absorb more liquid.
- Bismuth subsalicylate – balances out how fluid moves through your digestive tract.
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