Diarrhea is one of the commonest sufferings and everyone would have been affected by it at one time or the other. People will also fear diarrhea since there are evidences of death with the outbreak of cholera.
- It is as an alarming sign for invasion of an infective/irritable agent into the body.
- It can also be considered a natural preventive mechanism, which washes away the toxins from our body.
- It may also point to internal diseases, where care is more essential.
Infection – usually comes from the source of contaminated food/water. These types of diarrhea are often contagious. The common infective agents are
- Bacteria – E. coli, Salmonella, Shigella, Campylobacter, etc.
- Parasites – Entamoeba histolytica, Giardia Lamblia, Cryptosporidium, worms, etc.
- Virus – Rotavirus, Norwalk virus, etc.
Toxins – Chemicals or decayed food or poison can cause diarrhea
Mechanical – Ingestion of any hard food substance can also cause diarrhea
Habits – Overindulgence in alcohol and irregular dietary habit can also cause diarrhea
Drugs and therapy – Long-term use of laxatives, antacids, cancer drugs, antibiotics, radiation therapy, etc., can produce chronic diarrhea
Mind & neurological- anxiety, worries, excessive thinking and tension often cause vagal stimulation. This stimulation causes more acid secretion in the stomach which often induces diarrhea. Also, some women often suffer from diarrhea during menses, since the rectum becomes irritable from adjacent menstruating uterus.
Deficiency – Vitamins, minerals and zinc
Diseases – Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), cancer, tuberculosis, AIDS, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), liver diseases, typhoid, etc.
Allergies – Food allergy, lactose intolerances, mal-absorption, etc.
- tremors, weakness and cramps due to loss of electrolytes, especially sodium, potassium, calcium, phosphorus
- excessive thirst with dryness of mouth, throat, mucous membranes with giddiness, sweating and increased heart rate due to massive fluid loss
- weight loss and hollow cheeks decreased urine output and sub-normal temperature
Stool examination – Microscopic examination usually identifies the presence of blood,lymphocytes, amoebic cysts, pus cells, cell debris, bacteria
Biopsy and culture – can point out the nature of the disease and presence of bacteria and parasites
Blood tests may show increased level of white blood cells due to antibody reaction
Ultra sound scan – rules out major structural illness related with the abdomen
Colonoscopy/sigmoidoscopy helps in finding out ulcers, inflammation and structural change of intestines. Inflammation near the rectum points more towards ulcerative colitis, whereas inflammation near the small intestines points to Crohn’s disease.
- Keep good hygienic, sanitary conditions
- Make servers or chefs wear gloves while preparing or serving food to avoid food contamination
- Cook well in good heat, especially non-veg items
- Take care of drinking water – either opt for mineral water or water boiled for 20 minutes
- Wash hands before food and after using the toilet
- Cut and keep your nails clean
- Wash vegetables and fruits well in flowing water before intake or cooking. It is better to peel the outer skin, if possible.
- Take fibre-rich diet like greens, vegetables and fruits, since it helps in good digestion and forms stool which enhances normal bowel habits
- Take a good amount of fluid (at least in small sips) to tackle fluid loss
- Take easily digestible and oil-free, bland diet to reduce the workload for the stomach
- Take buttermilk and vegetable soups to compensate for electrolytes loss
- Smoking, drinking alcohol and chewing tobacco
- Food containing high spices, chilies, pepper and sausages
- Solid diet, oily diet, pickles and fatty snacks
- Milk products and sweets (continue breast feeding in case of diarrhea in infants)
- Aerated drinks, coffee and tea
- Drugs like NSAIDs/pain killers, antacids
Homeopathy gives importance to the cause & type of the complaint, mode of onset of symptoms and characteristic symptoms of the patient. Drugs are prescribed on symptom similarity for curing complaints. So, in Homeopathy, prescription differs from person to person, i.e., each patient is treated individually. Homeopathic treatment can give better relief from diarrhea without any tiredness, since it stimulates the immune mechanism of the body to work against the disease. The earlier you treat, the speedier will be the recovery. In the safe hands of Homeopathy, you can easily and absolutely outweigh all the risks.