Nobody likes having diarrhea—it’s an issue that can have any person running to the bathroom hoping to high heaven that they make it. Diarrhea is a problem that has a variety of causes, though it can also be a symptom of a much bigger problem, most usually with the digestive system of the body.
In most cases, diarrhea is an issue that will come and go without causing too much damage to a person. However, one must take the proper measures in order to ensure the avoidance of complications like dehydration.
What Causes Diarrhea?
One thing that may cause diarrhea is bacteria. The introduction of some harmful bacteria into the digestive system can wreak havoc. Bacterial diarrhea commonly occurs in such food as raw meat, shellfish, eggs, and milk that has not been pasteurized. However, it most commonly occurs because a patient may have eaten food that was not properly refrigerated or that has gone bad before consumption.
Viral infections may also be the culprit behind diarrhea—and in this case the viral infections are quite contagious. It is imperative to maintain proper hygiene with hand washing, dishwashing and washing utensils in order for the virus to be eliminated and to prevent it from being passed on from one person to another.
Traveler’s Diarrhea is called as such because it usually occurs when one travels to a country where conditions are not as sanitary. The body is unaccustomed to all the different bacterias in the food and water and reacts accordingly.
Diarrhea may also be caused by chronic conditions such as IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) and IBD (inflammatory bowel disease) amongst others. It can also be caused by certain medications. Food intolerance may also be a leading cause, such as in lactose intolerant people who cannot digest dairy products.
In more severe cases, diarrhea can be a result of cases like Diabetes, Addison’s Disease, Hyperthyroidism or Chronic Pancreatitis.
Remedies for Diarrhea
Usually diarrhea passes once the underlying cause is treated. However, there are certain things that can be done in order to cope with this issue.
It is important to rehydrate when one has diarrhea because diarrhea causes fluid and electrolyte loss. Water is a good start, but oral rehydration salts and solutions are even better because just water cannot replenish all the lost electrolytes.
It is a good idea to keep to eating bland foods that are “safe”, so to speak. Foods that will not cause a reaction and that are easy to digest. Soup and broth are good examples, along with plain crackers. When the body is ready, it is possible to reintroduce more complex foods slowly
If suffering from food intolerances, it is important to avoid the food which triggers diarrhea. Lactose intolerants much avoid dairy products, and so on.
As always, proper hygiene must be maintained when one has diarrhea. The cause may be viral and thus it can infect anyone else living in the same space or household. Frequent hand washing is recommended in order to keep the virus under control.
Some Diarhhea Remedies:
- Diarrhea causes a great loss in liquid so stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids like water and Gatorade. Try some weak tea with sugar, ginger ale and fruit juices other than apple and prune.
- Eat yogurt with live cultures that will line your intestines and help produce lactid acid that can kill the bacteria that caused the diarrhea and help speed up recovery.
- For over-the-counter medicine, Pepto-Bismal is probably the best and seems to have an anti-bacterial effect that can be good in fighting traveler’s diarrhea.
- Avoid milk, cheese, and other dairy products other than yogurt for about 1 or 2 weeks
- Drink Chamomile tea to treat intestinal swelling
- Eat starchy foods like precooked rice to help settle your stomach
- Blueberries and blueberry root has been an old folk remedy. Sweden doctors have prescribed soups made from dried blueberries for stomach ailments
- Chop organic orange peel, place in a pot and pour abut a pint of boiling water to let it steep and make a tea will help digestion
- Add about a half teaspoon of fenugreek seeds with water and drink this mixture
A few home remedies that should considerably reduce the harshness and discomfort of diarrhea. If you are experiencing chronic or long-term diarrhea that comes on suddenly and stays for extended periods, you may have a more serious condition, such as a severe food allergy. Be sure to consult a doctor.