Diarrhoea results in loose, soft or watery stools. When you get diarrhoea, your main mission becomes how to stop it fast; if it continues, diarrhoea can cause dehydration. Diarrhoea may be caused by a viral or bacterial infection, tainted food, parasites or poison and is the result of your body trying to rid itself of the toxin. However, if diarrhoea persists, you should consult a doctor.
Over-the-counter medicine is one of the fastest ways to stop diarrhoea. Try a medication such as Imodium, DiaClear, Kaopectate or Pepto-Bismol. However, they can cause side effects, such as headaches or nausea. If a side effect does occur, stop taking the medicine immediately and talk to your doctor.
Eat foods that will help produce a firmer stool. Such foods include brown rice, bananas, applesauce, toast and yoghurt. These foods are easily digested and can help stop diarrhoea within the day. You can also eat a baked potato, boiled eggs and cooked carrots, plain rice and unsalted crackers. Unseasoned chicken without the skin can also be eaten.
Ask your doctor about activated charcoal pills. These are not recommended for everyone, which is why you should talk to your doctor first before taking them. Activated charcoal can help alleviate inflammation and stop diarrhoea.
Stay hydrated. Drink water or an electrolyte drink such as Gatorade to help you stay hydrated while you have diarrhoea. Avoid milk, alcohol and caffeine, since they can prolong the problem.
Avoid high-fibre foods while you have diarrhoea, along with oils, sugars, milk and cheese. These are complex foods and can increase the diarrhoea. Get plenty of rest.
If diarrhoea lasts more than four days or you have severe abdominal pain, a fever, bloody stools, or your diarrhoea started during or after a trip to a foreign country, see your doctor immediately.
Tips and warnings
- Avoid high-fibre foods while you have diarrhoea, along with oils, sugars, milk and cheese. These are complex foods and can increase the diarrhoea.
- Get plenty of rest.
- If diarrhoea lasts more than four days or you have severe abdominal pain, a fever, bloody stools, or your diarrhoea started during or after a trip to a foreign country, see your doctor immediately.
Things you need
- Over-the-counter medication (Imodium, Pepto-Bismol, Kaopectate or DiaClear)
- Brown rice
- Baked potato
- Boiled eggs
- Cooked carrots
- Plain rice
- Unsalted crackers
- Unseasoned chicken
- Electrolyte drink