Diarrhea occurs when food passes through the digestive tract too quickly. It may happen for any number of reasons, but most people can expect diarrhea a few times each year. It will usually resolve on its own with time. The best tips for diarrhea relief include ways to deal with the immediate problem of diarrhea, such as medication and diet changes. There are also easy tips to avoid problems that occur with diarrhea, like dehydration, and ways to avoid it in the first place.
Even though diarrhea can be distressing, it is usually acute diarrhea that is severe but short-lasting, and will pass within a day or two. The first, best step is probably to take a non-prescription anti-diarrhea medication that contains loperamide or bismuth subsalicylate. Afterwards, take some dietary steps for diarrhea relief. Avoid dairy products, high-fat foods, and foods with added sugar or artificial sweetener, all of which can make diarrhea worse. Follow the BRAT diet by eating bananas, rice, applesauce and toast, or another high-carbohydrate whole food like a baked potato.
A bout of diarrhea can dehydrate the body, so drink some fluids without overdoing it. Water is the best choice, but diluted fruit juice and broth will probably be tolerated too. Lie down if possible to avoid making extra demands on the body, and stay away from alcohol and caffeine.
Frequent diarrhea can also be caused by a sensitivity to certain foods. It can be difficult to try pick out which food or foods one might be sensitive to without keeping track of them regularly. Therefore, try keeping a food diary with thorough entries for each meal, while also noting bouts of diarrhea in the same diary. If a link appears between a certain food and diarrhea, eliminate it from the diet. This might not show conclusive results right away, but if a genuine food sensitivity is eventually found, diarrhea relief could be found too.
Diarrhea can be caused by a host of microorganisms. Regularly under-cooking meats, poultry, and eggs can cause diarrhea. For preventive diarrhea relief, cook meat and eggs thoroughly, and always wash fresh produce. Viruses can be contracted from sharing food or utensils with infected people, so use your own clean utensils. Wash hands before eating to avoid transferring unhealthy organisms to food.
There are times when it is important to ask a doctor about diarrhea relief. It is sometimes recommended that a doctor should be seen after three consecutive days of diarrhea. Fevers, bloody stools, and severe abdominal pain with diarrhea are also reasons to seek a doctor's advice. Mention any prescription or non-prescription drugs you're taking, some of which can cause diarrhea.