Diarrhea in Children
Diarrhea is a condition in which loose, watery stools are passed with greater
frequency than normal.
What is going on in the body?
Diarrhea occurs when the colon or large intestine becomes irritated. This can
be caused by many things, including infection, chemical toxins, inflammation,
stress, or anxiety. The
colon responds to this irritation in the following ways:
The amount of water and mucous in the stool is increased.
The amount of water the colon reabsorbs from the stool is decreased.
The intestine empties the stools from the
body with increased frequency.
What are the causes and risks of the condition?
Most of the time, diarrhea in children is caused by the viruses that cause
gastroenteritis. Diarrhea is often associated with vomiting.
There are other causes of diarrhea, such as:
bacteria that invade the intestinal tract
gastrointestinal disorders, such as irritable bowel
inherited birth defects, such as cystic fibrosis
the introduction of a new food
toxins from contaminated food