Watery, loose bowel movements passed many times a day. Measures for Self-Care
- Drink plenty of liquids; for example, lime juice, lassi (whipped up curds or buttermilk with salt or sugar), fruit juice and soft drinks (after releasing the fizz).
- Try an over-the-counter medication, such as Imodium or Lomotil, if your condition does not improve even after 12 hours. You may need to take a tablet after each bowel movement.
- Once the diarrhea has subsided, you can eat small amounts of soft foods, such as cooked potatoes, yogurt (curds) and rice.
- If a small child (less than three years old) has diarrhoea, then start him on oral rehydration therapy. You can use rice kanji, the ORS solution available at the chemist's, or make it up at home yourself (by adding eight teaspoons of sugar and a half a teaspoon of salt to a litre of water). Continue breastfeeding (or his regular food) - don't starve him!
- Diarrhea that has lasted 48 hours or more.
- Diarrhea which entails bowel movements more than eight times a day in an infant or a chronically ill person.
- Diarrhea that has started only after taking medication (s).
- Dehydration (symptoms: passing very little or no urine, being very thirsty and lightheaded, dry skin that doesn't spring back after being pinched, sunken eyes, and disorientation).
- Severe abdominal or rectal pain or blood in the stool.