North Texas Gastroenterology Associates PLLC
Gastroenterologists located in Sherman, Anna, & Across North Texas
While nearly everybody experiences diarrhea from time to time, chronic diarrhea indicates a medical problem requiring treatment. At North Texas Gastroenterology Associates PLLC in Sherman and Anna, Texas, Joseph Kim, MD, Jermaine Clarke, DO, MBA, and their exceptional team treat diarrhea and its causes to reduce your risk of dehydration, nutritional deficiencies, and other complications. Call the office or schedule an appointment online today.
What is diarrhea?
Diarrhea occurs when you experience loose, watery stools three or more times a day. Acute diarrhea lasts just a day or two, while chronic diarrhea can linger for more than a few days. Because constant diarrhea is a sign of an underlying problem, see the North Texas Gastroenterology Associates PLLC team for an evaluation.
What are the symptoms of diarrhea?
Possible symptoms associated with diarrhea include:
- Abdominal cramps
- Loose, watery stools
- Abdominal pain
- Blood in your stool
- Mucus in your stool
- Abdominal cramps
- An urgent need for bowel movements
- Loss of bowel control
Complications that can occur because of untreated diarrhea include excessive thirst, dehydration, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, lightheadedness, and nutritional deficiencies.
How does my provider diagnose diarrhea?
To diagnose diarrhea and its root cause, your specialist asks you questions about your medical history, the medications you’re taking, and your symptoms. They complete a physical exam and might recommend that you undergo blood tests and stool tests. A colonoscopy or sigmoidoscopy will give your doctor an in-depth view of your inner gastrointestinal tract.
What causes diarrhea?
Many things can cause diarrhea. Among the most common causes are:
- Lactose intolerance
- Other food intolerances
- Fructose (a sugar found in fruits)
- Artificial sweeteners
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Other digestive disorders
- Stomach surgery
The cause of diarrhea isn’t always known. If it’s severe or long-lasting, see the North Texas Gastroenterology Associates PLLC team for an evaluation.
What are my diarrhea treatment options?
Depending on what kind of diarrhea you have, how severe it is, and what’s causing it, your GI specialist will recommend one of the following treatments:
Things you can do at home to ease diarrhea and speed up your recovery include:
- Avoiding caffeine and alcohol
- Drinking plenty of fluids
- Consuming electrolyte drinks or broth
- Avoiding dairy, fatty, high-fiber, and spicy foods for a few days.
Take probiotics supplements if your doctor recommends them.
Taking over-the-counter or prescription medications can reduce the duration or severity of your diarrhea. If your current medicines are causing your diarrhea, ask your specialist about changing your medications.
Your GI specialist will suggest that you have intravenous (IV) fluids to treat severe dehydration or an electrolyte imbalance.
Treating the underlying cause
If diarrhea is linked to inflammatory bowel disease or another gastrointestinal problem, your specialist works with you to develop a personalized treatment plan.
Don’t live with severe or long-lasting diarrhea and its complications when help is within reach. Call the North Texas Gastroenterology Associates PLLC office today or book an appointment online.
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