It is natural to not pay much attention to taking a dump; it is as normal as tying your shoes or brushing your teeth, isn't it? Things may be different if you start pooping 10 times a day. While it is common for adults to experience changes in bowel frequency, a sudden change may make you ask, "Why am I pooping a lot?"It could be due to recent dietary changes or an underlying medical condition. Keep reading to learn more.
When Are You Pooping Too Much?
Some people think they are pooping too much, but in reality, they are not. How many times a person should have bowel movements a day varies greatly. What is normal for someone is not enough for someone else. It is all fine if you are having a bowel movement at least three times a week.
Many people believe everything is normal if they go to the bathroom once or twice a day. It is normal so long as you are not experiencing any abdominal pain. What is more important is consistency. If you have a bowel movement once a day every day of the week, you are just fine. If once a day is your frequency and you notice it change and become five times a day, there is something wrong.
Why Am I Pooping a Lot?
If your bowel frequency changes suddenly, it is obvious to ask this question. This may happen due to many different reasons. For instance:
When food or fluid that you consume passes too quickly through your colon, you develop diarrhea. It is the responsibility of your colon to absorb liquid from what you eat and leave semisolid stool. It fails to do it properly when food passes too quickly, and it results in a watery bowel movement. You may develop diarrhea due to a number of reasons. For instance:
- Viruses: Your vomiting and diarrhea could be due to a viral infection. Viral strains that cause diarrhea are usually highly contagious. You may contract it by sharing utensils, drinks, and food with someone who is infected. People who do not exhibit any symptoms may still play a role in spreading these viruses.
- Bacteria and Parasites: Contaminated water or food can transmit bacteria and parasites and leave you with diarrhea. Cryptosporidium and Giardia lamblia are the most common parasites responsible for causing diarrhea. Bacterial causes of diarrhea may include salmonella, campylobacter, Escherichia coli, and shigella.
- Medications: Certain medications may cause diarrhea as a side effect. Antibiotics are the most common culprit. These medications destroy good bacteria in your gut and change the natural balance of bacteria. This causes an infection that can often lead to diarrhea.
- Lactose Intolerance: Lactose is a sugar present in dairy products and milk in particular. Many people find it difficult to digest lactose and end up developing diarrhea when they eat something that contains lactose. Some people just do not have the enzyme required to digest lactose.
- Fructose: Just like lactose, fructose is also a sugar but is found in honey, fruits, and beverages. If you have trouble digesting fructose, you may develop diarrhea.
Why am I pooping a lot suddenly? The answer could be related to your menstrual cycle. Your body produces hormones called prostaglandins to start menstruation, but some women produce these hormones in larger quantities. The excess hormones often make it to the bowels and stimulate it. This leads to diarrhea.
3. High Level of Stress
You may develop diarrhea or your symptoms may become worse due to stress. This usually happens in the periods of increased stress, such as the first weeks on a job or last week before exams. Your brain communicates your feelings to your digestive tract and makes it to behave erratically.
4. Alcohol and Caffeine
Are you drinking too much of alcohol or enjoy caffeinated beverages a lot? This could be the answer to your question, "Why am I pooping a lot?" Caffeine leaves negative effects on your digestive system. However, some people may experience a decreased need to use the bathroom, while others may experience the complete opposite.
How to Poop Less Often
When you know the answer to your question,you may want to know about some ways to make you poop less often. Here are a few steps to take:
1. Do Not Eat High Fiber Foods
Eating food rich in fiber will increase the frequency of bowel movements. It is a good idea to cut back on vegetables and fruits that contain loads of fiber.
2. Be Sure to Drink Plenty of Water
It is even more important to drink water if you are on a high-fiber diet. You should drink at least 8oz of water every 2 hours to keep your digestive tract well hydrated.
3. Take Medications with Extreme Care
You should pay attention to the package insert before taking any mediation. Read if they have mentioned diarrhea or any bowel related changes in side effects. Laxatives, misoprostol, and stool softeners can cause diarrhea. Talk to your doctor if you develop diarrhea after taking certain medications.
4. Meditate to Keep Stress Under Control
You should avoid as many stressors as you can. Avoid getting in an argument with a difficult coworker, and avoid high traffic areas, or anything that makes you feel stressed. Find a hobby and spend some quality time with your family. Always communicate with respect, and try some relaxation exercises to reduce stress.
When to See the Doctor
While you usually do not need to worry and ask, "Why am I pooping a lot?" you may want to talk to your doctor if you notice some other symptoms as well. For instance, you should consult your doctor if you notice quick changes in the volume, consistency and appearance of your bowel movements, such as ribbon-like stools, watery stools, etc. See your doctor immediately if you also have abdominal pain and notice pus, mucus, or blood in your feces.