What is Diarrhea?

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What is Diarrhea?

Diarrhea is a common illness that various people experience from time to time, it is where individuals have the urgent need to pass bowel movement multiple times a day which are loose and watery. It may be acute or chronic. Most common diarrhea now a days is caused by an organism called Vibrio Cholera. It is mostly spread via contaminated water mainly followed by food. When an individual is infected with Vibrio Cholera, there is profuse diarrhea which is whitish (Rice stool) and foul smell. Vibrio Cholera can be fatal if not treated aggressively. Sometimes diarrhea is also associated with abdominal pain and vomiting which can lead to severe dehydration.

Causes of Diarrhea

Most common cause of diarrhea is infection that affects ones bowel.

Other possible causes are

·        Food items that upset the digestive systems

·        Infection by bacteria(most common cause is food poisoning)

·        Reaction of some medication can also cause diarrhea

·        Intolerance and allergies of various food items can also lead to diarrhea

·        Abuse of laxatives can also be a cause

·        Other causes include inflammatory conditions and systemic illness.




Symptoms of Diarrhea

Symptoms one experiences depends from condition to condition, whether it is severe or mild. The most common symptom is loose or watery stool. Others are:

·        A strong urgent need for a bowel movement

·        Cramps and bloating

·        Upset stomach

·        Vomiting

·        Nausea

·        Dehydration

Serious symptoms may include

·        Blood in stool

·        Fever

·        Frequency of vomiting

·        Electrolyte Imbalance where common electrolytes to be kept under eyes are sodium and potassium. Low sodium can lead to brain swelling while low potassium can lead to irregular heart beat called arrhythmias









What to Avoid

·        Imodium should be avoided in infectious diarrhea

·        Any sort of travelling or exertion

·        Avoid junk and tetra pack juices.






How to treat

One can treat diarrhea at home easily:

·        Aggressive rehydration is 1st line of treatment, it is done either with IV fluids or oral ORS, which helps patient to produce urine saving kidneys

·        Low Fiber diet like fish, Bananas, Noodles, white bread and others

·         Antibiotics and electrolyte replacement.

·        KYB diet (Khichdi, Yogurt and banana) should be encouraged.

·        Specific medication taken upon doctor’s prescription.