Diarrhea - Identify It

Diarrhea - Identify It

Diarrhea is usually a symptom of bowel infection that is caused by bacteria, virus or a parasite. One can get infected through food poisoning – after consuming contaminated food or drinking contaminated water. Getting diarrhea is a common case, with it happening to an individual at least once in their lifetime. This leads to more frequent, loose and watery stool as a result. The length of one’s diarrhea would depend on its cause, often lasting an average of 2 days. For more serious cases like Irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel diseases, Intestinal cancer etc. its duration can vary from 7 days to several weeks.

Causes of short-term diarrhea

  • Feelings of anxiety
  • Drinking too much alcohol
  • Food allergy
  •  Appendicitis
  • Damage to the lining of the intestines because of radiotherapy
  • Medicine side effects (laxatives, statins, antacids etc.)


  • Stomach pain
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Bloating
  • Thirst
  • Weight loss
  • Fever
  • Some symptoms are considered indicators of a more serious illness - blood or pus, fever, signs of dehydration, persistent vomiting, chronic diarrhea, or weight loss.


  • For treatment of diarrhea, do provide the doctor with ample information which could be useful in helping him detect the source of the problem.
  • Consume plenty of water when having diarrhea to replace the loss of fluids and avoid dehydration.
  • Consume high-potassium foods and liquids - examples include diluted fruit juices, potatoes (without the skin), bananas etc.
  • Use high-sodium foods and liquids - broths, soups, sports drinks, salted crackers etc.
  • Oral rehydration solution/salts (ORS) water contains salt and glucose which helps rehydrate the body quickly.
  • OTC antidiarrheal medicines (Loperamide, Bismuth sub-salicylate) is also given by the doctor.

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