What Exactly Diarrhoea Is?
Diarrhoea is a condition, which is characterized by abnormally loose or watery
stools. If a person passes 3 or more loose or liquid stools per day, or more frequently
then it is said to be abnormal and we can say, the individual is suffering from
Diarrhoea. Nowadays, it is one of the most common health issues among every age
It can be a sign or symptom of gastrointestinal (stomach) infection, and a variety of
bacterial, viral and parasitic organisms can be the reason behind this. Infection can
be spread through contaminated (infected) food or drinking-water, or from one
person to another person due to poor hygiene.
If it is not treated in time, it can lead to body fluid loss, and maybe life-threatening,
especially in young children and in people with impaired or weak immunity.
It is estimated that 2 billion cases of diarrhoeal disease occur each year globally,
and about 1.9 million children below the age of 5 years, die from diarrhoea, mostly
in developing countries.
Some people misunderstand diarrhoea with frequently passed stools of normal
consistency, but it is not diarrhoea. The same is the case with breastfed babies, who
often pass loose, pasty stools, which is normal.
Diarrhoea is quite distressing and irritating until the stools are passed, which usually
takes a few days to a week, but there is nothing to worry about.
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What Causes Diarrhoea?
The causes of diarrhoea can vary, but a bowel infection (stomach infection) has been seen as the common cause in both adults and children.
The stomach infection can be caused by:
● a virus – such as a norovirus or rotavirus.
● bacteria – the most common- Escherichia coli (E. coli), which often come up
from contaminated giardiasis(infected) food.
● a parasite (which feeds on others) – such as the parasite that causes
giardiasis (intestine infection), which is spread through contaminated
(infected) water and poor hygiene.
Not only this, but diarrhoea can also be the result of anxiety, any food allergy,
medication, or if someone is going through a long-term health issue, like irritable
bowel syndrome (IBS).
Symptoms Of Diarrhoea –
Diarrhoea can be identified by the following signs and symptoms:
● Stomach pain
● Abdominal cramps
● Nausea and throwing up
If it is not treated properly in time, it can lead to a more serious illness, including-
● Blood or pus in the stools
● Persistent (continuous) vomiting
● Weight loss
While suffering from diarrhoea it’s important to drink plenty of fluids to avoid
dehydration, especially if you’re vomiting.
Small, frequent sips of water would be helpful because a small amount is better than
none. It is very important for babies and small children. Keep your child away from
fruit juice or fizzy drinks as they can make diarrhoea worse in children.
Adults should drink water mixed with juice and soup broth, it will make the urine light
yellow or almost clear.
Oral Rehydration Solution(ORS)
Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) is the easiest way to prevent dehydration when you
are suffering from diarrhoea, especially when you’re frail (weak) or grown up. Also, it
can be used to treat dehydration that has already occurred.
ORS can be easily available in sachets at local pharmacies without a prescription.
They are easy to prepare as they just need to dissolve in water and they replace salt,
glucose, and other important minerals that are lost while dehydration.
You should ask the doctor for advice before taking medications
M.Sc. (Dietetics and Food Service Management). Passionate about sharing the healthy & balanced lifestyle needs to be followed in today’s era. Determined to motivate people more about their health & nutrition, by analyzing their dietary concerns and daily life challenges.