Most people are familiar with the signs of diarrhea – they include bowel movements (often very frequent) with stools which are loose and watery. Diarrhea is fairly common and usually harmless, only lasting a couple of days at most and not requiring any treatment. However, some people have diarrhea as part of irritable bowel syndrome or other chronic gastrointestinal disorders.
Diarrhea occurs when food and fluids pass too quickly and sometimes in a large quantity through the colon. When it functions normally, the colon absorbs liquids from the food you eat, leaving a semisolid stool. But if the colon is not absorbing the fluids, the result is a watery bowel movement known as diarrhea.
Diarrhea symptoms are categorized in two ways; uncomplicated (or non-serious) diarrhea and complicated diarrhea. Symptoms of uncomplicated diarrhea include:
- Loose, watery stools
- Sense of urgency to have a bowel movement
- Bloating and cramps in the abdominal area
- Nausea and vomiting
Complicated diarrhea symptoms may indicate that a more serious illness is present. Complicated diarrhea symptoms include those listed above and also:
- Blood in the stool
- Weight loss
- Abdominal pain
Causes of Diarrhea
Causes of diarrhea can be varies but the most common is a virus that infects the gut. The infection usually lasts for two days and is sometimes called stomach flu’. Other causes of diarrhea include:
- Infection by bacteria, also referred to as food poisoning
- Consumption of foods which upset the digestive system, often because of sensitivities
- Infections by organisms
- Gastrointestinal disorders such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis)
- Over-use of laxatives
- Digestive tract surgery
- Lactose intolerance
- Artificial sweeteners
- Malabsorption (where the body is unable to adequately absorb certain nutrients)
- Alcohol abuse
A diarrhea diagnosis is fairly easy to do since the symptoms are straightforward, but the important thing for a practitioner to determine is what is causing the diarrhea.
A conventional doctor may perform a physical exam which could include a temperature check for fever and an examination of the abdomen to see if pain is present. He may review the medications the patient is taking and if there is no clear cause of the diarrhea, he may order blood and stool tests.
At LifeWorks Wellness Center, a diarrhea diagnosis is performed by making a functional evaluation to assess the function of the intestine. A stool test may also be ordered to evaluate the physiology of the gastrointestinal tract, e.g. Is there inflammation in gut, what is the enzyme activity in the pancreas, is bacterial overgrowth or parasites present and what is the immune status in the gut?
When to See a Doctor for Diarrhea
It is advisable to see a doctor for your diarrhea if it persists after two days, if you become dehydrated or if you have severe abdominal pain. A doctor should also be consulted if you have black or bloody stools or have a high fever.
Natural Diarrhea Treatment
Most people with diarrhea do not want to rely on over-the-counter or prescription medication for a prolonged period and so they seek natural diarrhea treatment. Natural diarrhea solutions depend on identifying the underlying cause, and this is the route taken at LifeWorks Wellness Center.
When a patient presents with symptoms of diarrhea, the LifeWorks’ practitioner will perform a functional evaluation to help to determine cause(s) of the diarrhea. The natural diarrhea treatment is tailored specifically to the individual patient, who will be evaluated to see what kind of nutritional supplementation will be required to re-establish the proper functioning of the colon.
Clearwater & Tampa Diarrhea Treatment
Lifeworks Wellness Center is long recognized as one of the foremost natural health clinics in the US. At our Clearwater, Florida alternative medicine office we have been offering treatment for diarrhea for a long time and many of our patients have benefitted from it. Our patients fly in from all over the world because they simply can’t find clinics offering solutions to their diarrhea problems and natural medicine for their diarrhea where they live.
We have helped many patients regain their health and we would love to help you, too. To become a patient, or for more information, feel free to call our New Patient Coordinator at (727) 466-6789 or simply submit an online web form with your request.
*Disclaimer: Individual patient results may vary based on a patient's medical history and other factors.