When To See Your Health Care Provider
Get medical help right away if you have diarrhea along with a fever or severe stomach pain, or if you feel too sick to drink anything. You want to rule out any serious problems like diverticulitis or appendicitis, says Katz. Otherwise, see your health care provider if you don’t start to feel better in a day or two. If you have had chronic diarrhea for more than three or four weeks, call your health care provider so they can investigate the cause of it.
Diarrhea is no fun, but here’s the good news: It usually clears up on its own in a few days. Give yourself time to rest and recover, and your poop problems will soon be, well, behind you.
Signs That Patients Require Further Medical Attention
If patients are still suffering from diarrhea following the recommended changes to their diet, it is recommended that they seek medical attention promptly to exclude other causes. If diarrhea lasts longer than three days, results in dehydration or presents other serious symptoms, patients will need further treatment and medication.Other symptoms include black or bloody stools, severe abdominal pain, and high fever. In the scenario where a child is experiencing this condition, parents of the patient need to be mindful of the following signs:
- Hasnt had a wet diaper in a couple of hours
- A dry mouth or tongue
- Sunken appearance
What To Eat When You Have Diarrhea
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When you have diarrhea, a bland diet may help prevent stomach upset and irritation. You can follow the BRAT diet, which stands for bananas, rice, apples, toast. This diet also helps firm stool.
Whether your diarrhea is caused by allergies, food poisoning, a chronic condition like irritable bowel syndrome, or something else, diet and diarrhea are intricately linked.
Even if you have long-term conditions that affect the digestive system, the diet you eat can greatly affect your comfort levels.
When youre experiencing an episode of diarrhea, there are certain foods that you can eat to help your digestive system get back on track. There are also certain foods that you should avoid.
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How Is Diarrhea Treated
Most infections that cause diarrhea, especially viral infections, will go away without treatment. Taking it easy at home and drinking plenty of fluids to avoid dehydration are the best ways to ride out the illness. If you do become dehydrated, you might need to go to the hospital for intravenous fluids to replace those lost to diarrhea, vomiting, and fever.
If you go to your doctor, you may give a stool sample so he or she can find out what type of infection you have. Whether you need medicine will depend on which germ is causing the illness. A parasitic infection will be treated with anti-parasitic medicine. Sometimes, diarrhea caused by bacteria is treated with antibiotics to prevent the infection from spreading throughout the body.
Minerals Are Important Too
Make sure to get enough zinc…
Having a deficiency in zinc can lead to diarrhea, loss of hair, a weakened immune system, and a number of other downsides. Good sources of this mineral are
17. Beef – Red meats in general are good sources of zinc, beef being one of them. In a 100g patty of ground beef you are already getting about 4.8mg of zinc. This is close to half of the RDA for men and more so for women. There also is zero fiber here as well as those that follow..
18. Lamb – Another red meat, lamb is also a good choice. So if you like gyros you are in luck.
19. Pork – While not as great as ground beef, pork is still supplies a fair amount at 2.39mg per 100g.
Getting enough potassium is something else that you should consider. When you have diarrhea and are losing a lot of fluids, high amounts of potassium are lost. This makes it important to replenish so that you do not become deficient. Some good foods to eat for this purpose include
20. Bananas – Thought to have originated somewhere in southeast Asia, they are super easy to chew, very smooth, and well known for their potassium. A medium sized one will fetch you about 422mg or about 12% of what you should be getting daily. They also give you a good amount of vitamin C but you may not want to eat too much due to the high fructose levels, which may upset your stomach.
Others – Sweet potatoes, avocados and spinach are also good sources but they already made the list so we will not be repeating them here.
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Foods That May Lead To Or Worsen Diarrhea In Sensitive Individuals
- Milk and other dairy products
- Legumes and cabbage family vegetablesthese are all high in fiber
- Fruits and juices that contain fructose
- Caffeine-containing beverages such as coffee and tea
- Alcoholic beverages such as beer, wine, and liquor
- Fatty meats such as bacon and heavily marbled meats
- High fat foods such as fried foods, pastries, and chips
- Artificial sweeteners such as NutraSweet®, Splenda®, Equal®, sorbitol, etc.
- Sugar-free gums and mints that contain sorbitol, mannitol, or xylitol
- Real black licorice
- Large quantities of nuts or nut butters
- Concentrated sweets o Dried fruits such as figs, dates, raisins, and prunes o Prune juice
When To Contact A Doctor
Blood or mucus may appear in the stool in more serious cases of diarrhea, which can also involve fever. Anyone with these symptoms should speak with a doctor as soon as possible.
Untreated diarrhea can also lead to serious complications, including dehydration. A person with severe diarrhea may require hospitalization and intravenous electrolytes.
Anyone experiencing a fever higher than 102°F or severe abdominal pains should speak with a doctor.
Parents or caregivers should carefully monitor any children with diarrhea. If the symptoms do not clear up within 24 hours, they should call a doctor for guidance.
If a child shows any signs of dehydration, it is essential to seek immediate medical care. The signs
- dry diaper for 3 hours or more
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When Should I Call My Doctor
- Blood in your diarrhea or black, tarry stools
- A fever that is high or that lasts more than 24 hours
- Diarrhea lasting longer than 2 days
- Nausea or throwing up that prevents you from drinking liquids to replace lost fluids
- Severe pain in your belly or rear end
- Diarrhea after coming back from a foreign country
Also, call your doctor right away if you have diarrhea and any of these signs of dehydration:
Eating When You Have Diarrhea
You can bake or broil beef, pork, chicken, fish, or turkey. Cooked eggs are also OK. Use low-fat milk, cheese, or yogurt.
If you have very severe diarrhea, you may need to stop eating or drinking dairy products for a few days.
Eat bread products made from refined, white flour. Pasta, white rice, and cereals such as cream of wheat, farina, oatmeal, and cornflakes are OK. You may also try pancakes and waffles made with white flour, and cornbread. But don’t add too much honey or syrup.
You should eat vegetables, including carrots, green beans, mushrooms, beets, asparagus tips, acorn squash, and peeled zucchini. Cook them first. Baked potatoes are OK. In general, removing seeds and skins is best.
You can include desserts and snacks such as fruit-flavored gelatin, fruit-flavored ice pops, cakes, cookies, or sherbet.
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Using Probiotics To Get Rid Of Diarrhea
Taking probiotics in food or or as supplements might help naturally shorten a mild bout of diarrhea. Probiotics are live bacteria and yeast that are beneficial to your digestive system.
Diarrhea can cause you to lose a lot of the healthy bacteria in your stomach and intestines.
Probiotics can quickly replace these protective microorganisms and help restore normal bowel function. Some helpful probiotics include:
- Lactobacillus bacteria
- Saccharomyces boulardii yeast
In particular, S. boulardii has powerful antidiarrheal effects.
It may be best to avoid some dairy products during diarrhea, but not all. Certain dairy foods, like yogurt or kefir with live probiotic bacteria, are extremely beneficial.
Other natural probiotic sources are fermented foods like:
- Sourdough bread
Kimchi is another popular fermented food. Some people even call it a “super-probiotic.” But kimchi has hot spices that might make your diarrhea worse.
Side effects of probiotics, whether in food or supplement form, tend to be mild and may include an upset stomach, bloating, and gas.
How Is Diarrhoea Treated
In the case of simple short-term episodes of diarrhoea, which usually clear up by themselves in healthy people, you will probably be able to manage your symptoms through home care.
You should try to do the following:
- stay off work or school until you have not had a loose bowel motion for 24 hours
- drink clear fluids or oral rehydration solution to replace lost fluids take small sips if you feel sick
- avoid fruit juice, cordials and sugary drinks they will prolong the diarrhoea
- avoid alcohol and caffeine
- manage your diet until you get back to normal eat bland foods, such as rice, pasta and crackers, and avoid fatty foods or those high in insoluble fibre
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Home Remedies For Diarrhea
How to get rid of mild diarrhea without medication
Robert Burakoff, MD, MPH, is board-certified in gastroentrology. He is the vice chair for ambulatory services for the department of medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, where he is also a professor. He was the founding editor and co-editor in chief of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.
Home remedies for diarrhea can help you naturally stop a mild case fast. Bland, starchy, low-fiber foods like those included in the BRAT diet are binding, which helps make stools bulky and relieve diarrhea.
Taking probiotics, drinking lots of fluids, and avoiding certain foods and drinks are other natural ways to manage diarrhea and help you feel better faster. Keep in mind that diarrhea caused by a virus or bacteria usually goes away on its own in two to three days.
This article goes over how to get rid of diarrhea naturally without turning to medicine.
Some people reach for Imodium the moment they have loose stool. But, the drugs are meant for frequent or severe diarrhea rather than an occasional episode.
How Is Diarrhoea Diagnosed
Diarrhoea can be diagnosed based on your symptoms and a medical history, taken by your doctor. If the diarrhoea goes away after a few days you may not find the cause.
Sometimes, tests will be needed to diagnose an underlying condition. These include:
If you have ongoing diarrhoea, your doctor may refer you to a gastroenterologist or other specialist to work out the underlying cause.
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Immediate Action Required: Call 999 Or Go To A& e If You Or Your Child:
- vomit blood or have vomit that looks like ground coffee
- have green or yellow-green vomit
- might have swallowed something poisonous
- have a stiff neck and pain when looking at bright lights
- have a sudden, severe headache or stomach ache
- Severe pain:
- always there and so bad it’s hard to think or talk
- you cannot sleep
- it’s very hard to move, get out of bed, go to the bathroom, wash or dress
- Moderate pain:
- makes it hard to concentrate or sleep
- you can manage to get up, wash or dress
- Mild pain:
Things You Should Avoid Eating Or Drinking
You should avoid certain kinds of foods when you have diarrhea, including fried foods and greasy foods.
Avoid fruits and vegetables that can cause gas, such as broccoli, peppers, beans, peas, berries, prunes, chickpeas, green leafy vegetables, and corn.
Avoid caffeine, alcohol, and carbonated drinks.
Limit or cut out milk and other dairy products if they are making your diarrhea worse or causing gas and bloating.
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Try Eating Foods That Go Down Easily
There is a diet out there called the BRAT diet, which stands for Bananas, Rice, Apples, and Toast. It is all about eating soft and bland foods when dealing with diarrhea. It’s a pretty basic diet but the foods recommended are good choices.
Bananas – Already made the list. Good source of many vitamins/minerals and go down very easy.
Rice – Already made the list. Bland, low in fiber, versatile… a pretty good option.
22. Applesauce – Apples aren’t our favorite choice, but we get it. They provide a fair amount of vitamins and minerals, like vitamin C and potassium. We listed applesauce here instead of just apples because it goes down easier and much of the fiber is in the skin. They say that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but not the dentist. We would suggest you don’t overdue it with them because of the high sugar amount.
Toast – White bread that is toasted is going to give you the littlest amount of fiber as already discussed. Throw a bit of butter on it and enjoy!
Probiotics For Diarrhea: Benefits Types And Side Effects
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Probiotics are beneficial microorganisms that have been shown to offer a wide array of health benefits.
As such, probiotic supplements and probiotic-rich foods have become popular natural treatments for a number of health conditions, including digestive issues like diarrhea .
This article explains how probiotics may help combat diarrhea, reviews which strains are the most effective, and addresses the possible side effects associated with probiotic use.
The bacteria in your gut collectively known as the gut microbiota can be both negatively and positively affected by various factors, including diet, stress, and medication use.
When gut bacteria composition becomes imbalanced and the normal population of probiotics is disrupted, it can lead to negative health effects, such as an increased risk of conditions like irritable bowel syndrome and digestive symptoms like diarrhea .
The World Health Organization defines diarrhea as having three or more loose or watery stools in a 24hour period. Acute diarrhea lasts fewer than 14 days while persistent diarrhea lasts 14 days or longer .
Supplementing with probiotics may help prevent certain types of diarrhea and help treat diarrhea by repopulating and maintaining beneficial gut bacteria and correcting an imbalance.
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Lifestyle Dos And Donts When You Have Diarrhea
Along with knowing what to eat and drink when youre dealing with gastrointestinal woes, its also important to be mindful of other everyday habits to help you deal with diarrhea.
Do wash your hands. Since diarrhea can sometimes be transmitted by person-to-person contact or from contaminated hands, washing your hands after using the bathroom and before you eat or prepare food can help block possible diarrhea-causing pathogens. Handwashing can reduce episodes of diarrhea by about 30 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To wash properly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends wetting your hands, then applying soap and rubbing them together for at least 20 seconds. Make sure to include the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails. Rinse with clean, running water and dry thoroughly. An alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60 percent alcohol can work, too.
Do know when to call the doctor. Mayo Clinic advises to seek medical help if you have any of the following symptoms:
- Your diarrhea lasts more than two days.
- You experience severe abdominal pain or pain in your rectum.
- Youre dehydrated or exceptionally weak.
- You have a fever of 102 degrees F or higher.
- Your stools are bloody or black and tar-like.
Can Diarrhoea Be Prevented
Gastroenteritis the most common cause of diarrhoea is highly infectious, and mostly spread by contact with another person who has the illness, or from contaminated food.
These measures can help to stop the spread:
- wash hands frequently using a good handwashing technique
- follow proper food-safety practices
- if a household member has diarrhoea, they should not prepare food for the other members, and everyone should follow regular handwashing and hygiene practices
- someone who has diarrhoea should not visit hospitals, aged care facilities, or swimming pools
- babies can be vaccinated against rotavirus
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How Do Doctors Treat Persistent And Chronic Diarrhea
How doctors treat persistent and chronic diarrhea depends on the cause. Doctors may prescribe antibiotics and medicines that target parasites to treat bacterial or parasitic infections. Doctors may also prescribe medicines to treat some of the conditions that cause chronic diarrhea, such as Crohns disease, irritable bowel syndrome, or ulcerative colitis. How doctors treat chronic diarrhea in children also depends on the cause.
Doctors may recommend probiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms, most often bacteria, that are similar to microorganisms you normally have in your digestive tract. Researchers are still studying the use of probiotics to treat diarrhea.
For safety reasons, talk with your doctor before using probiotics or any other complementary or alternative medicines or practices. If your doctor recommends probiotics, talk with him or her about how much probiotics you should take and for how long.