When a child’s bowel pattern changes suddenly to a loose and watery bowel movement (BM, stool, or poop) and occurs more often than usual, he or she has diarrhea. Diarrhea is a common symptom of illness in young children. In the United States, children younger than 4 years may have diarrhea 1 or 2 times each year.
Diarrhea can be acute (lasts a short time) or chronic (lasting more than 2 weeks). Here is information from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) about acute diarrhea, as well as how to manage the symptoms, and how to help reduce your child’s chances of getting diarrhea.
Most diarrhea in children is caused by viruses. Diarrhea can also be caused by bacteria, parasites, changes in diet (such as drinking too much fruit juice), problems with the intestines (such as allergy to foods), and the use of some medicines.
Most of the time mild...