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How to Check Early Symptoms of Diarrhoea? Types & Causes



Diarrhoea is characterized by frequent, urgent bowel movements and the presence of loose, watery faeces. In terms of Diarrhoea, we can distinguish between acute and chronic cases.


When Diarrhoea lasts for more than 24 hours but less than a week, it is considered chronic. Diarrhoea might be caused by a virus or bacterium that you ingested.


Diarrhoea that persists for more than 3–4 weeks is considered chronic. Among the many potential root causes of persistent Diarrhoea are disorders of the digestive tract that prevent proper nutrition absorption, such as celiac disease and irritable bowel syndrome


Causes of Diarrhoea?


Diarrhoea may occur for many different reasons. The following are some diarrhoea causes


Viruses like rotavirus and norovirus may cause Diarrhoea and vomiting; bacteria like Salmonella and E. coli can cause food poisoning and parasites can cause worms.

illnesses of the digestive tract food intolerances such as lactose intolerance drug reactions

surgery on the gallbladder or the stomach


Irritable bowel syndrome and inflammatory bowel disease are two more serious conditions that might be underlying causes of persistent Diarrhoea. Diarrhoea, especially if it is chronic and severe, may indicate gastrointestinal illness or a functional bowel condition.


Symptoms of Diarrhoea?


Diarrhoea manifests mostly as a persistent need to defecate and frequent faeces that are loose and watery.


Diarrhoea may present itself in a wide variety of ways. Any one of these things may happen to you, or all of them could happen at once. Cause-specific diarrhoea symptoms may or may not present themselves. What it means to experience any of the following:


  • Symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, stomach discomfort, cramps, bloating, dehydration, and the urgent need to use the restroom
  • Frequent bowel movements
  • Dehydration
  • Water loss and loose stools


Dehydration is a real issue while dealing with Diarrhoea because of the rapid loss of fluids that may occur. Severe consequences might result from Diarrhoea if it is not treated. Some of the signs of dehydration are: 


  • Fatigue
  • Cracked and dry lips and nose 
  • Rapid beating of the heart
  • Pain in the head
  • Lightheadedness
  • Increased thirst and lower volumes of urine production
  • A parched feeling in the mouth


If you have Diarrhoea and are concerned that you may be becoming dehydrated, you should see a doctor right away.


Types of Diarrhoea


Diarrhoea has certain continuous features, but it's also crucial to pay attention to the fact that its duration and colour might change.


These are some of the many diarrhoea types:


  • Short-term Diarrhoea, defined as less than two weeks, is called acute Diarrhoea. Acute, watery Diarrhoea (such as the kind visitors get) is most often caused by a virus or bacterium. Acute Diarrhoea usually resolves on its own within three days.
  • The term "chronic Diarrhoea" refers to Diarrhoea that lasts for more than four weeks (also known as persistent Diarrhoea). Seeing a doctor about this kind of Diarrhoea is a good idea since it might be a symptom of something more severe.


The appearance of Diarrhoea may also be used to categorize it:


  • Experiencing blood in your watery, loose faeces is a potentially life-threatening symptom known as bloody Diarrhoea. Diarrhoea with blood may indicate internal bleeding from an accident or an illness. Haemorrhoids and rectal tissue irritation may also cause a little bleeding. 
  • Diarrhoea that is black in colour may be an indication of internal bleeding, namely in the upper gastrointestinal system. Consumption of blue or black-coloured meals or drinks, as well as iron supplements and bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol), are other probable causes of black Diarrhoea.
  • Diarrhoea that is yellow in colour may point to a problem with the gallbladder or liver. For babies, this is quite typical.
  • Green stools may occur after consuming foods that are naturally or artificially coloured green. It's also not uncommon for babies and toddlers to have skin with this tint.


What to Keep an Eye Out for and Possible Dangers?


Variations in eating habits, cleanliness habits, and safe food handling are just a few of the lifestyle variables that have been linked to an increased risk of Diarrhoea.


  • Diarrhoea may be caused by consuming too many liquids, too much fibre, too quickly, or too many fatty or spicy meals. Diarrhoea may also be caused by "detox" drinks, weight reduction teas, and vitamins.
  • Maintaining a healthy standard of personal cleanliness: Diarrhoea-causing bacteria, viruses, and parasites are disseminated by direct contact with contaminated environments (including food and drink) and vectors (including hands). These pathogenic agents may be spread by a lack of personal cleanliness, particularly through unwashed hands.
  • Accidental cross-contamination: Keep raw meat, fish, poultry, and eggs apart from other foods, check their internal temperature using a food thermometer to ensure they are cooked fully, and thoroughly clean any surface that has come into touch with raw food to prevent food poisoning.




Diarrhoea is characterized by frequent, loose faeces that may include some water. There's a chance you'll also have urgent bowel movements.


When an illness causes Diarrhoea, it may only last for a few days, but it may have serious consequences, the most serious of which is dehydration. It is also possible for the disease to persist over time, but this is far less frequent.


Diarrhoea often results from a viral or bacterial illness. Diarrhoea may also be caused by food intolerances, pharmaceutical side effects, or a chronic disease.


It's best to consult a doctor if your symptoms persist for more than a couple of days. Seek prompt medical attention if a youngster in your care has Diarrhoea. Diarrhoea and subsequent dehydration is a common medical emergency, especially in children less than 5 years old.

Medanta Medical Team
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