Causes and Symptoms of Traveler’s Diarrhea

Food poisoning, nausea and sickness concept. Portrait of young man and woman tourists feeling stomach ache, suffering from diarrhea after they ate some exotic food during journey in Asian country

Nothing can be more disruptive to your day than bad or frequent bowel movements. When you’re on vacation or a business trip, diarrhea is the last thing you want to deal with. So how do you know if your sudden symptoms are due to a travel-related illness?

Keep reading to learn about the causes and symptoms of traveler’s diarrhea!

Traveler’s Diarrhea Symptoms Include Gas 

Have you been drinking tap water in a place without proper filtration? If so, you may be exposed to viruses or dangerous E. coli bacteria. Similarly, eating raw foods washed in contaminated water can lead to traveler’s diarrhea.

Traveler’s diarrhea happens when viruses or bacteria cause problems in your digestive tract. This can lead to fever, fatigue, and cramps. You may encounter nausea, too.

What are other travelers’ diarrhea symptoms? Making frequent trips to the bathroom is a common one. But there are other telltale signs.

You may experience gas and a bloated stomach, for instance. A combination of bacteria and vapors in your digestive system results in gas. And if this gas builds up, it can cause intense bloating and unpleasant odors when released.

Consider Where You’re Traveling 

Sometimes traveling to foreign countries can contribute to an onslaught of diarrhea. This is because not all countries have the means to filter contaminants out of water. You may wind up with a bout of Montezuma’s Revenge on a trip to Mexico!.

When you head to another country, try to stay away from tap water. Likewise, stick with meats that are thoroughly cooked to avoid bacteria. This is particularly true when you’re visiting a hot climate.

Traveler’s Diarrhea Can Linger a Few Days

Worst of all, traveler’s diarrhea can hang around for up to a week. In other words, you may end up spending a sizable chunk of your vacation in the bathroom. And you may lose your appetite during that period, too.

In some instances, you’ll experience traveler’s diarrhea symptoms quickly. Symptoms can strike within hours of ingesting contaminated foods or beverages.

How quickly you experience symptoms may hinge on the viral load at exposure. For instance, you may be eating contaminated food with a low viral load. Then you may not experience the effects for a few days.

Replenish Your Fluids to Recover

When you’re having more frequent bowel movements or throwing up, this can leave you dehydrated. As part of recovery from traveler’s diarrhea, make a point of rehydrating.

Stick with filtered water during this process to avoid further problems. And turn to medical practitioners for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

They may recommend 550mg Rifaximin to help fight off the bacteria making you feel terrible. Additionally, they may recommend fluids fortified with electrolytes.

Manage Travel Related Illness

Constant trips to the bathroom and severe abdominal pain can knock you off course. If you’re struggling with traveler’s diarrhea, you may be fighting the symptoms for up to a week. Fill up on fluids and seek medical attention for a speedier recovery.

For the latest tips to stay healthy, check back for new articles.

Hemant Kumar
Hemant Kumar is a project manager at Tridindia with more than nine years of commendable experience in writing about LMS, translation, and IT. His unmatched talent and passion for digital marketing gave him the opportunity to work as a multi-tasking project manager at TridIndia’s sister company, Link Building Corp. Today, he contributes to the world by imparting knowledge on SEO, link building and internet marketing etc., that helps business owners grow their online business.