Problems in bowel movement result in diarrhea and constipation. When bowel movement is not frequent or faces difficulty to release then it is constipation. On the other hand, diarrhea is when stools become watery. Short episodes of diarrhea or constipation are very common. If the condition persists for a long time then there might be some serious underlying problem.
- Less than three bowel movements weekly.
- Bowel movements are painful or difficult
- Hard and dry stools
- You might feel you have not released the full stool
If you are experiencing such symptoms for more than a week then you must check with a specialist. You will be able to get relief with the prescribed medicines.
There are several causes of constipation. If you eat something which you usually don’t, it might result in shirt team constipation. Other reasons for short-term constipation can be not drinking enough water, anxious feelings. If constipation persists for a longer time then you might be having some underlying health problems.
Some possible causes are:
- Blockage in the colon, small intestine.
- Issues with the nervous system affecting the contractions responsible for the movement of food in the intestines which may be because of Parkinson’s disease or spinal cord injury.
- Hormonal imbalance
- Frequent bowel movements
- Loose or watery stools
Diarrhea is often accompanied by fever, nausea, abdominal pain. It depends on the reason because of which you are having diarrhea.
You should consult a specialist if the symptoms last longer than a few days. In children and infants dehydration quickly causes diarrhea.
- Some infections because of bacteria, parasites, or viruses by the intake of contaminated food or water.
- Consumption of medicine whose side-effect is diarrhea
- Not able to digest some food items like lactose
Gastrointestinal disease results in chronic diarrhea. Gastrointestinal diseases like IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), celiac disease, or inflammatory bowel disease.
Diagnosis of Diarrhea and Constipation
Your specialist will ask you about the symptoms you are experiencing during the physical examination. A blood test might be conducted but it depends on whether you are having diarrhea or constipation.h
If you are having constipation blood test will tell about the hormonal imbalances which might have resulted in constipation. For evaluating bowel obstructions x-ray or MRI is also done. Some other tests might be conducted depending on the patient’s condition.
If you are having diarrhea blood test can tell about the infection which has caused diarrhea. For knowing the specific infection, stool test might be conducted.