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Diarrhoea is a common medical condition that everyone has experienced in their lifetime. Despite being common, it’s one of the most uncomfortable situations. Not only does it affect day-to-day life, but the frequent bathroom trips are frustrating.

There are many causes of diarrhoea, but it typically occurs because of either eating contaminated food or unhygienic practices. Apart from these two causes of diarrhoea, it can surface as a side-effect of medications, diabetes, and even allergies to certain foods. There are practices such as hand hygiene that can prevent diarrhoea that spreads through touch, so using products such as Dettol hand wash is highly advisable. Apart from that, let’s take a look at the 5 major causes of diarrhoea and how to prevent them.

Bacterial Infection

Bacterial infection is one of the most common causes of diarrhoea. Bacteria such as E.coli, salmonella and campylobacter can contaminate food and drinks. Commonly, these bacteria attack stale or uncooked food. Food prepared in unhygienic conditions can also be infected by E.coli or campylobacter.
How to Prevent?
The best way to protect against these bacterial infections is by proper storage and refrigeration of food. Cooking food and consuming it hot is also necessary to avoid bacterial infection that causes diarrhoea. Other than that, maintaining hand hygiene and preventing cross-contamination of food is important. Use Dettol hand wash to wash hands before cooking food and eating it.

Viral Infection

A viral infection caused by norovirus or rotavirus can induce chronic diarrhoea. It cannot be treated with antibiotics like a bacterial infection, so it’s critical to protect against this infection.  Viral infection can cause stomach flu such as gastroenteritis.
How to Prevent?
Just like a bacterial infection, food and drinks must be kept out of contamination. Maintain proper hand hygiene while cooking food. Use Dettol hand wash before eating to maintain optimum hygiene. Also, while travelling or in situations when washing hands with Dettol hand wash is not possible, use Dettol hand sanitizer to kill microbes that linger on the hands.

Food Intolerance and Allergies

Many people have a food intolerance, which is caused by a lack of enzymes that are required to digest that food. Lactose intolerance is the most common one and occurs because of the lack of ability to digest sugars in milk. Consuming food that one is intolerant to can cause diarrhoea and other conditions such as gas, pain and abdominal cramps.
How to Prevent?
The only way to prevent it is by avoiding the foods that trigger the condition. It can cause diarrhoea which may last for over four weeks.

Artificial Sweeteners

Alternative sugars are also a leading cause of triggering diarrhoea in people. Artificial sweeteners including saccharine, aspartame and sugar alcohols disrupt the biology of the intestines entirely and cause diarrhoea. For people with IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) cutting on artificial sweeteners is necessary.
How to Prevent?
Avoid eating diet versions of fizzy drinks or foods such as dessert. Instead, have small portions of your favourite sweet foods that contain regular sugar. Artificial sugars can cause diarrhoea and may even lead to IBS.


Even if the food is cooked and free from bacteria and virus, one can still get diarrhoea because of the spice in it. Spicy food is another leading cause of food-induced diarrhoea. It especially surfaces when eating a spice that one is not familiar with because it will irritate the stomach lining. Spice can cause bloating, burning, gas and lead to chronic diarrhoea.
How to Prevent?
Don’t go overboard with spicy food. However, if spice is a necessity then use mild products such as ground paprika or even mustard to add that required kick.

An episode of diarrhoea can be uncomfortable. Following the best hygiene practices is the best way to prevent diarrhoea that is caused by microbes. Washing hands with Dettol hand wash before cooking and eating food can prevent diarrhoea to a considerable extent. Other than that, avoiding food that can trigger diarrhoea is important. There may be many causes of diarrhoea but being informed and aware of one’s own physiology can help avoid such cases to a large extent.

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