What is it and how can I treat it?

Diarrhoea is a loose or watery poo. It is usually nothing to worry about. A common    reason for diarrhoea is infection of the gut (gastroenteritis).  Sometimes this happens    from infected food or drinking infected water – hence the advice to drink bottled water when visiting some countries.  You can also get diarrhoea from a virus that spreads fro one person to another by close contact or when an infected person prepares food for others.

Other causes can include anxiety, overindulging in some types of food and alcohol and an underlying medical condition.

In most cases, diarrhoea eases and goes within several days, but sometimes it takes    longer. The biggest risk is dehydration so make sure you have lots to drink mainly water but include some diluted fruit juice and/or soup and try to eat as normally as possible. Small light meals rich in carbohydrates – like bread, rice and pasta and best to be eaten as soon as you feel like it and avoid spicy, heavy and fatty foods. Salty foods such as soup can help replace any lost salt from your system.

Medication is not usually necessary but you buy anti-diarrhoea treatments from your    pharmacy or supermarket.  Always read the label before taking medication.

You can prevent the spread of infection by washing your hands thoroughly when preparing food and after going to the toilet.

See a doctor if suspect you are dehydrating or if you still have diarrhoea after a week but no other symptoms.

Visit www.nhs.uk for more information on diarrhoea