Diarrhoea is common in adults, children and babies.
It can be very distressing and upsetting for the patient – mainly because its onset can be sudden – which can be a major problem when out in public.
Obviously watery stools being passed very frequently is the main symptom of diarrhoea, but there are other symptoms, which can accompany this, making the condition worse for you.
Nausea and vomiting
Weakness and fatigue
Causes of diarrhoea
In most cases, diarrhoea is caused by:
Bacterial infection such as salmonella or E coli
Viral infection, such as rotavirus
Medical conditions such as Crohn’s or Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Diarrhoea can, however, also be caused by lifestyle – with anxiety and stress, changes to diet and excessive alcohol often contributing to the condition.
Under the Minor Ailment scheme, you can have a consultation with one of our pharmacists and receive both advice and medication to help alleviate your symptoms.
There are two main forms of treatment which our pharmacist can provide you with:
Oral rehydration sachets – these work by replacing the water and salts that you will have lost from your body as a result of the diarrhoea. The sachets contain glucose and salts and are mixed with water so that you can take them in drink form.
Loperamide capsules – this medication slows down food as it goes through your system. This then means that your body can draw in more water from your intestines so that your stools become firmer – lessening the diarrhoea.
In most cases acute diarrhoea eases and goes away within a few days.
On some occasions, however, it may last longer and you may be at risk of dehydration. Infants and elderly people are particularly susceptible to dehydration. In severe cases, dehydration can lead to hospital admission.
During your consultation with our pharmacist, you’ll be given dietary advice and information about rehydration.
While in most healthy adults, fluid intake will be sufficient, those who may be over 60 years of age, ill or frail, may be advised to consider supplementing fluid intake with oral rehydration salt solution.
After you are fully rehydrated, our pharmacist may advise you to take only small, light, non-fatty and non-spicy meals for a while, until your system has settled down again.
If you experience a bout of acute diarrhoea, call into Toome Pharmacy or call to book a consultation. Our pharmacists will be able to provide you with support and medication to improve your condition and to ensure that you remain hydrated.