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Is Diarrhea Part Of Pregnancy

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How To Treat Diarrhoea

How Diarrhea Happens During Pregnancy

It’s likely that diarrhoea will naturally clear up after a couple of days. To keep the discomfort and bathroom runs to a minimum during this time, give these tips a go:

  • Hydrate We mentioned it earlier but it’s the most important thing you can do when diarrhoea hits. Drink plenty of water , fresh juice , and nutritious clear broth . This will rehydrate you and replace your missing electrolytes.
  • Keep clear from offending foods Dried fruits, sugary juices and soft drinks, milk, fatty or spicy foods these will only exacerbate the situation. Stick to foods that will be gentler on your digestive tract, like bananas, rice, cooked carrots, natural yoghurt, toast and crackers.
  • Say no to certain medications Diarrhoea medications that contain sodium are not recommended during pregnancy. If you’re not sure, check with your midwife or doctor to be safe.

Regardless of the severity of your diarrhoea, always call your doctor or midwife if:

  • You suspect a virus or bug is the cause of your diarrhoea you may need antibiotics
  • Your diarrhoea lasts longer than a couple of days

Can I Take Antidiarrhea Medication

There are some over-the-counter antidiarrheal medications that are safe to take during pregnancy, but check with your practitioner for advice about taking one while you’re pregnant. She may suggest you try to avoid taking one. On the other hand, if your diarrhea is serious, she may recommend you take one to avoid dehydration.

Antidiarrhea medications shouldn’t be taken if you have any signs of a bacterial infection, though, such as a fever or blood in your stool.

Peeing A Lot In Pregnancy

Needing to pee a lot often starts in early pregnancy and sometimes continues until the baby is born. In later pregnancy, its caused by the babys head pressing on your bladder.

If you find you need to get up in the night to pee, try cutting out drinks in the late evening. However, make sure you drink plenty of non-alcoholic, caffeine-free drinks during the day to stay hydrated.

Later in pregnancy, you may find it helps to rock backwards and forwards while youre on the toilet. This lessens the pressure of the womb on the bladder so you can empty it properly.

If you have any pain while peeing or you pass any blood in your pee, you may have a urine infection, which will need treatment.

Drink plenty of water to dilute your pee and reduce pain. You should contact your GP within 24 hours of noticing these symptoms. Read more about urinary tract infections .

Dont take any medicines without asking your midwife, doctor or pharmacist whether theyre safe in pregnancy.

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When Should I Call My Healthcare Provider About Diarrhea During Pregnancy

Also call if you have diarrhea and any of these symptoms:

  • Diarrhea with blood or mucus
  • Frequent vomiting
  • Dry mouth, dizziness, dark-colored urine, less frequent urination, or lightheadedness

Contact your provider right away if you have diarrhea and also feel your baby moving less often or vigorously than usual or have signs of preterm labor such as:

  • Regular or frequent contractions
  • Pressure or pain in your pelvis or lower stomach that is persistent or gets worse

Having a bout of diarrhea while you’re pregnant isn’t usually anything to worry about. In fact, many mild illnesses and discomforts may come and go uneventfully during your pregnancy. It’s a good idea to know what symptoms warrant a call to your doctor or even emergency care, though. Our article on pregnancy symptoms you should never ignore can help you identify them.

Learn more:

BabyCenter’s editorial team is committed to providing the most helpful and trustworthy pregnancy and parenting information in the world. When creating and updating content, we rely on credible sources: respected health organizations, professional groups of doctors and other experts, and published studies in peer-reviewed journals. We believe you should always know the source of the information you’re seeing. Learn more about our editorial and medical review policies.

MedlinePlus. 2020. Diarrhea. U.S. National Library of Medicine.

Early Signs Of Pregnancy

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If you have a regular monthly menstrual cycle, the earliest and most reliable sign of pregnancy is a missed period.

In the first few weeks of pregnancy you may have a bleed similar to a very light period, with some spotting or only losing a little blood. This is called implantation bleeding.

Every pregnancy is different and not everyone will notice all of these symptoms.

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Is Diarrhea A Symptom Of Early Pregnancy

The answer is going to take a sec, so pull up a seat.

Your hormones fluctuate throughout your menstrual cycle, and you might know that these hormonal changes can make your poop real weird around the time of your period2. Thats largely thanks to a hormone that helps prep your body for pregnancy called progesterone.

Progesterone levels increase after ovulation, anticipating that the egg your ovaries just released will be fertilized, the NLM explains. If you dont become pregnant, progesterone levels fall back down, and you get your period. If the egg is fertilized and you do become pregnant, your levels of progesterone will continue to rise, , an ob-gyn at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center, tells SELF.

How does this early pregnancy progesterone surge affect poop? Progesterone helps relax the smooth muscles, like your uterus and intestines. While relaxed intestines might sound like a recipe for the loose, speedy bowel movements that characterize diarrhea, that isnt what actually happens. In fact, without your G.I. muscles contracting as hard to move things along, food passage starts to slow down and bowel movements become sluggish, G. Thomas Ruiz, MD, an ob-gyn at Memorial Care Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California, tells SELF.

Gastrointestinal Issues During Pregnancy

Gastrointestinal issues are some of the most common complaints during pregnancy. Some women may experience GI issues that develop after becoming pregnant. Gastrointestinal problems affect the gastrointestinal tract, primarily the esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine and rectum, but can also affect other organs of digestion, including the liver, gallbladder, and pancreas. Some women may have chronic GI disorders prior to pregnancy that can worsen and require special consideration during pregnancy.

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Diarrhea During Early Pregnancy

Food digestion starts in the mouth. As you chew your food, it mixes with saliva, is swallowed, and moves down the esophagus to reach the stomach.

When it reaches the stomach, acids are added and a full metabolic process occurs to ensure nutrients and water can be absorbed when the food moves into the intestine.

Through the intestinal walls, useful nutrients are filtered into the blood while waste products move on down the bowel until theyre finally excreted.

Diarrhea is when you pass loose stools. This is due to the transit of food in the intestinal tract happening much faster than normal.

When you experience diarrhea, it means the digestive tract isnt functioning properly and the food processing cycle is sped up so the absorption of nutrients and water doesnt happen properly.

Diarrhea can be caused by various digestive problems.

If you have underlying conditions, such as Crohns disease, irritable bowel syndrome or celiac disease, you will have baseline knowledge, and you can tell if an episode of diarrhea feels any different from what youve experienced before.

Food poisoning or viral infections such as gastroenteritis can also be the cause of loose bowel movements. Diarrhea with these illnesses tends to be accompanied by cramps and abdominal pain. When you get one of these conditions youre generally quite unwell you have a temperature, and arent able to carry on with life as usual for a couple of days.

When Should I See My Doctor For Gastrointestinal Issues During Pregnancy

An Approach to Chronic Diarrhea

Even if you experience only mild symptoms of gastrointestinal issues, it is important to inform your doctor. He or she can recommend the best methods to manage those symptoms and can then monitor you throughout your pregnancy for worsening symptoms.

If your symptoms are severe, become severe, and are persistent or prolonged, call your doctor right away. You should call your doctor and seek immediate medical care if you experience:

  • Severe discomfort that interferes with daily activities
  • Episodes of choking
  • Pain or difficulty when swallowing
  • Extreme fatigue

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Travelers Diarrhea And Early Miscarriage

Is diarrhea in early pregnancy a sign of miscarriage? Travelers diarrhea is a common condition among people traveling. It might start weeks after getting to the new environment or even during the journey. The primary cause of travelers diarrhea is contaminated water and food.

Pregnant women should be extra careful since this can always lead to fatal complications such as early miscarriage. Here are the tips to help you stay healthy as you travel around.

  • Restrain from traveling to areas with poor sanitation.
  • Restrain from buying food from street vendors.
  • Do not drink tap water in high-risk regions.
  • Avoid buying peeled fruits, or fruits you didnt peel yourself.

Above all, avoid traveling to new environments immediately after conception. Such changes can cause some symptoms and lead to a miscarriage.

Can Diarrhea Be A Symptom Of Early Pregnancy

  • Inability to completely empty the bowel
  • Bloating and cramping

Another reason for constipation in pregnancy is that, as the fetus grows, the womb takes up more space and puts pressure on the rectum, which is the last part of your intestines. Keeping hydrated and getting enough fiber every day can help relieve this.

However, constipation pain in pregnancy may be a sign of something serious. Call your doctor if you experience constipation in pregnancy symptoms like blood in stool, weight loss, severe pain while defecating, and constipation longer than two weeks.

Is constipation a symptom of pregnancy? Yes, it is caused by elevated progesterone and pressure on your intestines from the baby.

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We Know Youre Wondering: Is It Possible To Be Pregnant And Still Have A Period

Nope, experts say. Some people may experience bleeding or spotting, but those are different bleeding patterns from the cyclical menses your body experiences in absence of a pregnancy.

Dr. Michele Hakakha, an OB-GYN and author of Expecting 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Pregnancy, told Parents that people definitely can experience vaginal bleeding during pregnancy, but that when they bleed, they are not having a period.’ Thats because your body needs to reserve the uterine lining as nourishment for the growing pregnancy.

Although bleeding during pregnancy doesnt always mean cause for concern, it can indicate something more serious like a miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy, according to the Mayo Clinic.

In the earliest stage of pregnancy, however, some very light bleeding is totally normal and leads us to our first pregnancy clue: implantation bleeding.

Implantation bleeding usually doesnt last more than a couple of days, and its much lighter than most peoples periods .

What Is The Best Way To Confirm Pregnancy

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The best way to confirm pregnancy is to do a blood test measuring the human chorionic gonadotropin hormone. Women can also take a home pregnancy test. Home pregnancy tests are fairly reliable but may occasionally be a false-positive. This can occur for a number of reasons, including having a chemical or ectopic pregnancy or even taking certain medications. Following a positive home pregnancy test with a doctors visit for a urine or blood test to confirm the pregnancy is the best way to confirm a pregnancy.

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Is Diarrhea Part Of Early Pregnancy

Sometimes hormones can cause your digestive process to slow down, and at times that can lead to diarrhea. Every pregnant woman has these hormonal changes, but some will experience diarrhea early in their pregnancy from those changes. If you are experiencing diarrhea, it could also be due to a bacterial or viral infection.

What you should know about diarrhea during pregnancy?

Why diarrhea is common during pregnancy

  • Diet changes. Many women make dramatic diet changes when they find out they are pregnant.
  • New food sensitivities. Food sensitivities may be one of the many changes you experience during pregnancy.
  • Hormone changes. Hormones may make your digestive system slow down, so constipation may be an issue.

Is diarrhea only in the morning a sign of pregnancy? Hormonal fluctuations associated with pregnancy can cause morning diarrhea and nausea. Pregnancy increases hormone levels, such as estrogen and human chorionic gonadotropin. These hormonal fluctuations can cause morning diarrhea and nausea .

Can diarrhea be the symptom before period? Diarrhea before your period Cramps, bloating, back pain, sore breasts , and mood swings are all common symptoms of premenstrual syndrome . Diarrhea is another symptom you might experience before getting your period. If youve found that your diarrhea appears before your period, youre not alone.

Should Diarrhea Be A Cause To Worry

Women are quick to assume that minor sickness during pregnancy could lead to serious harm to the growing baby. Diarrhea is a common condition not just for everyone but also for pregnant women. There are also many conditions that can cause diarrhea. Some of these conditions include main bowel problems as well as bowel infections. Hormonal changes are also a suspect for diarrhea in pregnant women. These conditions are temporary and will pass within a short time.

Diarrhea becomes dangerous once it continues for more than 2 days. After 2 days, pregnant women should seek immediate medical attention. This is also the recommendation for pregnant women who experience fever, notice blood in the stools, dehydration, or constant vomiting for long periods. The nine months of Pregnancy is delicate, and seeking medical attention at all times after prolonged conditions is the best choice in order to keep the mother and baby safe. Pregnant women must endeavor to avoid self-medication, especially those that are used to treat diarrhea unless they are medications prescribed by a physician. During bouts of diarrhea, taking fluids, water, clear broth, and soups helps keep the body hydrated. Avoiding caffeine and sugary or fatty foods also helps to minimize dehydration. It is important to be guided by a doctor if diarrhea persists for long periods .

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How Can You Treat Diarrhea

Diarrhea should run its course in just a couple of days, but you can use medication to intervene if it is severe. Your options can include consistent rehydration, following a bland diet, and staying away from greasy foods. Some teas can also ease the symptoms of diarrhea and calm the stomach. Examples include chamomile and ginger tea.

Its important to consult your doctor before beginning the use of any remedies or over-the-counter medication.

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What Other Poop Changes Can Happen During Pregnancy

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Youre likely to have constipation at any point of your pregnancy due to the hormonal changes going on. The elevated progesterone levels in pregnancy lead to smooth muscle relaxation in the uterus but can also lead to the relaxation of the smooth muscle in the colon, leading to reduced bowel activity and constipation, says Dr. Zore.

The other unpleasant symptom you may experience during pregnancy is hemorrhoids, which can affect 30 to 40 percent of people during pregnancy and the postpartum stage, according to Dr. Zore. They can make constipation worse, first of all, but can also cause pain and even bleeding. This makes your hydration and high-fiber diet even more of a priority, Dr. Zore says.

If youre experiencing persistent bleeding or bloody stools, that is a red flag of a potentially more serious condition.

Here are a few things to do if you have a stomach bug.

  • Dont panic if you do have diarrhoea and vomiting.
  • Make sure you rest as much as possible.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day.
  • Eat small, light meals if you are hungry and it doesnt make you feel sick.
  • If you dont eat for 24 hours dont worry but make sure you drink plenty of fluid.
  • Wash your hands before and after going to the toilet and after vomiting.

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How To Relieve Rectal Pain

All those trips to the bathroom can take a toll on your backside. There are multiple ways to relieve the pain associated with your frequent bowel movements.

  • Use baby wipes instead of toilet paper.
  • Take warm baths to soothe the area.
  • Apply a hemorrhoid cream if needed.
  • Pat the toilet paper on your bottom instead of rubbing it.
  • Wear loose-fitting breathable cotton underwear.
  • Stomach Bugs In Pregnancy

    Here are a few things to do if you have a stomach bug.

    • Dont panic if you do have diarrhoea and vomiting.
    • Make sure you rest as much as possible.
    • Drink plenty of water throughout the day.
    • Eat small, light meals if you are hungry and it doesn’t make you feel sick.
    • If you dont eat for 24 hours dont worry but make sure you drink plenty of fluid.
    • Wash your hands before and after going to the toilet and after vomiting.

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    Pregnancy Gas And Bloating

    Gas during pregnancy occurs along with other gastrointestinal side effects. It may be caused by hormonal changes, like the production of more progesterone. This hormone relaxes the bodys muscles, including the intestinal ones, which slows digestion and increases flatulence.

    If you have gas when pregnant, try some simple lifestyle and diet hacks to ease the pressure in your gut. Take it easy on high-fiber, hard-to-digest foods like beans, avoid fizzy drinks and fatty foods, and get out for a walk to help move things along.

    CAUTION If bloating is accompanied by severe pain that lasts more than 30 minutes, or you have constipation for two weeks or more, you should call your doctor.

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