What Are The Top Causes of Diarrhea and How to Avoid Them?

Causes of Diarrhea - Sriramakrishnahospital

When food is ingested it gets absorbed into the body through the small intestine. And waste that gets rejected is pushed through the large intestine in the form of stool and this comes out through the rectum. Usually the stool is firm and quite easy to pass. 

Every one of us may have experienced diarrhea at any point of time. Usually there may not be any particular reason for diarrhea. Understanding the diarrhea symptoms and treatment options can help manage the condition without any panic.

What is meant by diarrhea?

Diarrhea is referred to as watery and loose stools for more than three times a day. Diarrhea is divided into acute, persistent, and chronic. 

Acute diarrhea: 

This is quite a common problem and usually lasts for about one or two days and subsides on its own.

Persistent diarrhea: 

This type of diarrhea lasts for about 2 weeks. 

Chronic diarrhea:

This type of diarrhea can last for about 4 weeks or it can come and go frequently. 

What are the common signs that indicate diarrhea?

The signs and symptoms of diarrhea are quite evident and they include:

  • Passing of watery and loose stools.
  • Cramps in the abdomen
  • Pain in the abdomen
  • Frequent urge to go to the bathroom
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Chronic Indigestion

What are the common signs of chronic diarrhea?

For the majority of cases, acute diarrhea tends to be self-restricting and typically resolves on its own within a day or two.  In case you experience severe symptoms, it is essential to seek medical help, the signs include:

  • Blood in the stool
  • Stool with pus
  • Persistent vomiting
  • Painful passage of stool
  • Inability to take fluids
  • Fever
  • No urination

When you have underlying medical conditions like kidney failure or heart failure, even a single day of diarrhea is considered dangerous. Reach out to chronic diarrhea treatment in Coimbatore to get immediate medical help. 

What are the top causes of diarrhea?

Here are some of the top causes of diarrhea:

Infections: 

Diarrhea is the most common symptom if the body has been infected by certain bacteria, virus, or even parasite. These microorganisms are generally seen in fecal-contaminated water and spread through when consumed. Escherichia coli and Rotavirus are most commonly found in water and are known to cause moderate to severe diarrhea. 

It need not spread only through contaminated water even with bad hygiene practices like not washing hands after using the bathroom can also spread the germs leading to diarrhea.

Improper nutrition: 

Most children below the age of 5 are prone to diarrhea. But unfortunately every time they have an episode of diarrhea, it only makes their condition worse. In malnutritioned children diarrhea is a leading cause. 

Food Tolerance:

Food intolerance may come all sudden, but if you quickly catch food intolerance it can immediately cause acute or chronic diarrhea. Food intolerance is not related to food poisoning, as food intolerance is a condition where a certain ingredient of the food is not accepted by the body, but food poisoning is that which occurs when virus or bacteria infected food is intaken. 

Lactose intolerance is the best example of food intolerance. It means you do not have an enzyme that is needed to break down lactose, which is a type of sugar seen in milk, cheese, or any other dairy product. In case you accidentally consume lactose containing food, it may begin as an acute diarrhea but can lead to chronic diarrhea within no time. Basically when the food you intake is not getting digestive it comes out in the form of diarrhea, it may also indicate chronic indigestion. 

Irritable Bowel Syndrome:

IBS or irritable bowel syndrome is one of the most common reasons for an upset stomach. IBS can cause a set of symptoms that include bloating and also discomfort. IBS can also lead to chronic diarrhea and also serious constipation either of them can occur from time to time. Although a definite cause of IBS is not clear it is important to keep a note of the food you eat. 

Inflammatory bowel disease:

IBD or inflammatory bowel disease, is an entirely different case of IBS. This condition occurs when the digestive tract is inflamed or irritated, and reduces the ability to absorb the nutrients from the food you intake. 

Certain medications:

The human digestive tract can have both good and bad bacteria. Good bacteria helps in maintaining the ph levels of the tract and also aids in digestion. But antibiotics cannot know the difference between bad and good bacteria leading to disrupt the digestion procedure leading to acute or chronic diarrhea. 

What are the best tips to avoid diarrhea?

Certain types of diarrhea like diarrhea caused by infections can be prevented but diarrhea that is caused by underlying conditions cannot be prevented. 

The best tips to avoid diarrhea are:

  • Avoiding contact with infectious agents
  • Eating covered food
  • Drinking safe water or packaged water
  • Washing hands frequently especially after using the bathroom.
  • Avoiding raw or undercooked food.

When should you visit a doctor for diarrhea?

Usually diarrhea gets settled within a day or two, but seek medical help if:

  • You have a constant fever of above 102 degrees
  • Highly discolored stool
  • Severe cramps or pain in the abdomen
  • Clear dehydration symptoms
  • Diarrhea that does not reduce even after a day or two
  • Stools that are generally mixed with pus or blood

Important Takeaway:

Diarrhea can be embarrassing and also can highly interfere with your day-to-day life. But diarrhea can always be treated with the right care and treatment. Also following simple hygiene habits can reduce the risk of getting affected by diarrhea. Seek immediate medical help from the best gastroenterologist in Coimbatore to avoid any complications that may be caused by diarrhea.


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