A loose, watery stool with disturbed bowel movements is termed as diarrhea. if a person has loose stools three or more times in a day, he is said to have diarrhea. Diarrhea lasts for a short interval of time is named as acute diarrhea. It is commonly faced by people. It lasts for 1-2 days usually. it goes on its own. It can be a sign of serious issues if diarrhea lasts more than a few days. diarrhea that lasts for a minimum of 3-4 weeks termed as chronic diarrhea. It can be a general symptom of chronic disease. The symptoms may be continual, or they may come and go or can continue in chronic diarrhea.
It is a condition characterized by annoying and painful loose and watery stools. It usually occurs due to an infection in the gastrointestinal tract or consuming polluted/contaminated food and water. About 75 % of deaths are due to diarrhea occurring in the first two years of life. The main cause of death is from acute diarrhea that results from the loss of fluids and electrolytes in diarrheal stools. Other important causes of death are dysentery.
Diarrhea is an important cause of undernutrition. This is because patients eat less during diarrhea and their ability to absorb nutrients is reduced.
Causes of diarrhea include:
Viruses- Cytomegalovirus, Norwalk virus, and viral hepatitis are viruses that are responsible for diarrhea. The cause of acute childhood diarrhea is Rotavirus.
Parasites and bacteria- Bacteria and parasites get transmitted to your body through contaminated food and water. When diarrhea is caused due to traveling in developing countries, it is often known as a traveler’s diarrhea. Clostridium difficile is another form of bacteria that leads to serious infections and results in diarrhea, which occurs after a course of antibiotics or during a hospitalization too.
Medications-Diarrhea can result due to the side effects of various medications. Both good and bad bacteria are destroyed by antibiotics due to the disturbance of the natural bacteria in your intestines. Cancer drugs and antacids with magnesium cause diarrhea.
Lactose intolerance- Lactose is a normal sugar found in milk & dairy products. People eating dairy products face difficulty in digesting lactose and have diarrhea. it gets an increase with age because levels of the enzyme that helps digest lactose drop in progressing age.
Fructose– Fructose is a natural sugar found in fruits and honey. certain beverages add sweetener to beverages. Difficulty in digesting fructose leads to diarrhea.
Artificial sweeteners. Sorbitol and mannitol – artificial sweeteners found commonly in chewing gum and other sugar-free products leads to diarrhea.
Surgery- Surgeries like surgery of gall bladder and abdominal sometimes cause diarrhea.
Other digestive disorders-Common disorders like Crohn’s disease, , celiac disease, ulcerative colitis microscopic colitis and irritable bowel syndrome(IBS).
- Alcohol abuse
- Laxative abuse
- Radiation therapy
- Overactive thyroid
- Some cancers
- Abdominal pain
- The urgency to evacuate the bowel
- Bloody & watery stools
- A frequent urge to evacuate your bowels
- A large volume of stools
- Weight loss
- People taking contaminated food
- People traveling more
- Old age & children can be at risk of diarrhea
- Excessive thirst
- Dry skin and mouth
- No urination or little urination
- Weakness, lightheadedness or dizziness
- Dark-colored urine
- Unresponsiveness, Drowsiness, or irritability
- Sunken appearance to the abdomen, cheeks or eyes
- Wash your hands regularly to prevent the spread of viral diarrhea. For adequate hand-washing:
- Wash frequently. Before and after preparing food to wash your hands properly. Wash your hands after handling uncooked meat, changing diapers, using the toilet, coughing, sneezing, and blowing your nose.
- Use hand sanitizer. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer when washing isn’t possible. Apply the hand sanitizer just like applying hand lotion, properly cover the fronts and backs of both hands.
- Practice good sanitation system which includes wastewater and sewage
- Dispose of child stool as early as possible
- Spread awareness about hazards of the spread of infection.
- Take ORS as suggested by WHO if someone faces symptoms of diarrhea.
- Take fresh fruits juices and liquids
In Ayurveda, it is called “Atisara”. Some conditions like weak digestive power, impure water, toxins, and mental stress commonly cause diarrhea. Depending upon which particular Dosha, Atisara has been classified in to vataj, pittaj, kaphaj, sannipatik, bhayaj, and shokaj types.
Atisara is mainly caused by Vata dosha. Vataj atisara is marked by painful loose motion with gases and sounds. Pittaj atisara causes motion with a burning sensation that shows offensive odor. Kaphaj atisara is sticky, oily, whitish motion with a foul odor. Sannipatik atisara is caused by the vitiation of all three doshas and have mixed characteristics. Bhayaj and Shokaj atisara are caused by fear and grief respectively.
Ayurvedic treatment for Diarrhea
In Ayurveda, there are numerous herbs that deal with all the signs & symptoms related to diarrhea patients. This ayurvedic treatment provides the best results to diarrhea patients as all the signs & symptoms are treated with the use of the ayurvedic medicines mentioned below in detail:
1. Detox Standard Powder
The powder contains a combination of natural and pure herbo-mineral ingredients which is the best remedy for the treatment of diarrhea problems. The mixture contains ingredients like– Parwal pishti, Giloy satav, shankh bhasam, Sutshekhar ras, Sudhyog tab, shwet parpati, Tal sindoor, Akik pishti, Jahar mohra, & Moti pishti. It relieves the body from the condition like general weakness, loose stools, fatigue, abdominal pain, cramps, etc.
Recommended Dosage: Take 1 sachet twice a day with normal water.
2. Sheetdhara Syrup
It is a very good antacid that neutralizes stomach acid and relieves heartburn, indigestion, or an upset stomach. This herbal syrup is used in health conditions like gastritis, belching, bloating, abdominal cramps, etc. This syrup commonly used to treat symptoms like hyperacidity, heartburn, abdominal cramps, and pain in abdomen conditions. It is used for extra gas and feeling of pressure, discomfort in the stomach or gut of your body.
Recommended Dosage: Take a half teaspoon twice a day with four teaspoons of water on an empty stomach.
3. Kutaj Ghan Vati
Kutaj Ghan vati is a purely herbal formulation. It is very useful in curing diarrhea, intestinal infection, and dysentery. These herbal tablets deal with all signs & symptoms related to diarrhea patients. Kutaj ghan vati contains ingredients like Kutaj (Holarrhena antidysenterica), Ativisha (Aconitum heterophyllum) that manage the symptoms like abdominal pain, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, loose stools, general weakness, fatigue, etc. The herbs in these tablets show antioxidant, anti-diarrheal, anti-inflammatory, etc properties.
Recommended Dosage: Take two tablets twice a day before a meal with water.
4. Liver care syrup
Liver Care syrup helps in balancing Pitta dosha. This Syrup enhances the regeneration of liver cells, promotes functions of the liver, and improve blood flow from the liver. It helps in the treatment of fatty liver, liver cirrhosis, Hepatitis, and obstructive Jaundice. It contains Ingredients like Kalmegh (Andrographis paniculata), Kutaki (Picrorhiza kurroa), Bhumi amla( Phyllanthus niruri), Giloy(Tinospora Cordifolia), Yavakshar( Hordeum vulgare), Imli Kshar( Tamarindus indica), Mukta Shukta pisti, etc. These herbs show Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, Hepato-protective, properties. This syrup improves digestion, enhances appetite. All signs & symptoms related to diarrhea are treated with the regular use of this syrup.
Recommended Dosage: Take 2 teaspoonful twice daily.