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DIARRHOEA

Diarrhoea is described as loose, watery stools that occur more frequently than usual. Diarrhoea is something everyone may have experienced, and often characterized by more-frequent trips to the toilet and the passage of loose stool, with or without abdominal cramps.



Causes

Diarrhoea maybe the result of having eaten too much of a food item that irritates the bowel like pepper or sugar which could induce an osmotic diarrhoea. It may however be due to a viral infection in the bowel, or maybe bacterial, which will require treatment with antibiotics. In most cases, diarrhoea is due to irritants we have eaten and simply require adequate rehydration to flush out the irritant. Symptoms may last a couple of days.

Signs and Symptoms may include

• Frequent, loose, watery stools

• Abdominal cramps and pain

• Dehydration

• Bloody mucoid stool

• Flatulence

Treatment

The danger with diarrhoea is getting dehydrated. To treat,

  • Rehydrate

Drink plenty of clear fluid and clear broth. Avoid milk or milk-based products, alcohol, apple juice, and caffeine while you have diarrhoea and for 3-5 days after you get better. They may make diarrhoea worse.

Give a child or infant with diarrhoea frequent sips of oral rehydration solution (ORS).

If you do not have ORS at hand, you can quickly make it by adding a pinch of salt and sugar to a litre of bottled or boiled water.

  • Rest

The person should rest as needed and avoid strenuous exercise. Keep a sick child home from school or day care.

  • Ease Into Eating

Feed an infant or child on easily digested foods.

Adults - add semisolid and low-fibre foods gradually as diarrhoea stops. Avoid spicy, greasy, or fatty foods.


See a doctor if you

• Have diarrhoea that doesn’t improve within two days.

• Pass bloody stool.

• Urinate very little or have a very dry mouth and skin.

• Experience abdominal pain.

• Develop a fever over 38.9°C

• Have a sunken look to the eyes cheeks or abdomen.

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