Diarrhea is a loose, watery and possibly more-frequent bowel movements in excess of three times a day. The disorder has many causes such as viruses, bacterial infections, medications, lactose intolerance, gluten intolerance, fatty foods, fructose, artificial sweeteners, surgery, and other digestive disorders. such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, celiac disease, microscopic colitis, and irritable bowel syndrome. Even caffeine and alcohol can bring it on.
Usually temporary, the condition can cause dehydration if it lingers. It is a signal that something else is going on in your body.
Signs and symptoms associated with diarrhea may include:
- Loose, watery stools
- Abdominal cramps
- Abdominal pain
- Blood in the stool
- Urgent need to have a bowel movement
Diarrhea usually goes away on its own within 48 hours, even without medicine. The most important things you can do in the meantime are to stay hydrated while the diarrhea runs its course and avoid foods that will make your symptoms worse. Your diet should include soups, broths, fruit juices, and plenty of water.
WHAT SHOULD I DO WHEN I HAVE DIARRHEA?
You should check with your doctor if your diarrhea does not subside in two or three days. (For children, call the pediatrician if diarrhea persists for more than 24 hours!)
Call your doctor right away if you have:
- Severe abdominal or rectal pain
- Blood in your stool
- Black, tarry stools
- High fever (greater than 101.3 F)
- Signs of dehydration such as little or no urination, dark-colored urine, excessive thirst, dry mouth or skin, severe weakness, or dizziness or lightheadedness.
Ongoing diarrhea can be a warning sign of things like:
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Colon cancer
SCHEDULE TREATMENT FOR ONGOING DIARRHEA AT OASIS ADVANCED GASTROENTEROLOGY
Severe diarrhea that can indicate other serious conditions. Contact Oasis Advanced Gastroenterology in Palm Springs to schedule an appointment with Dr. Asgeri.
Request an appointment online or call 760-699-7607.