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How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels?

How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels? - Official Rapid Tests

Kasim Javed |

How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels

The bowel, also known as the intestine, is an integral part of our digestive system. It is made up of the small bowel (small intestine or gut), and the large bowel (comprised of the colon and rectum).

Around 43% of Brits have experienced digestive problems at some point in their lifetimes, but only 59% of those people have ever discussed them with a doctor. This illustrates that most people are reluctant to discuss bowel problems, despite them being so common among the population.

In this article, we will answer the question ‘how do you know if you have damaged your bowels?’, which we hope you will find useful.

What is the function of the bowel?

Our digestive system is designed to break down the food that we ingest and get rid of the waste.

Firstly, the bowel helps the body absorb the minerals, nutrients and fluids from the foods we consume. The bowel is a long, continuous tube, running from the stomach to the anus.

Then, the leftover waste from the food are stored in the bowel, until they are emptied from the body in the form of a bowel movement.

What problems can occur with the bowels?

There are many health problems that can occur, if the bowels are inflamed, infected, develop a tumor, or do not work properly. These include:

How do you know if you have damaged your bowels?

How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels

Your bowel can weaken, become infected, or damaged, due to various reasons. So, how do you know if you have damaged your bowels?

Here are some signs and symptoms to look out for:

  • Blood in your stool or on toilet tissue
  • Severe pain or discomfort after eating
  • Severe stomach pain, which does not go away
  • Abdominal pain or cramping
  • Unexplained changes in bowel movements or urine
  • Painful bowel movements
  • Urgent need to have a bowel movement
  • Diarrhoea or constipation, or both
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Vomiting blood
  • Excessive wind
  • Bloating
  • Discomfort or pain when swallowing
  • Intolerance to certain foods
  • Reduced appetite
  • Swollen abdomen
  • Pain or tenderness when you touch your abdomen
  • Severe heartburn
  • Abnormal skin tags (on the buttocks)
  • Burning or itching of the anus
  • Mouth sores
  • High temperature
  • Fever or chills
  • Fatigue or lack of energy
  • Back ache
  • Swollen or painful joints
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Anxiety and depression

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical attention as soon as you can. The sooner you visit a doctor, the quicker you can get an accurate diagnosis and receive the help, care and treatment you need.

If you suspect your bowel is obstructed (blocked), this is a medical emergency, so you should go to your local Accident & Emergency (A&E) department straight away.

Where do you feel bowel pain?

Usually, bowel pain presents itself in the stomach or abdomen, especially after eating food, or when passing a bowel movement. It is common to feel pain around the belly button, or on the lower left and lower right sides of the abdomen.

Some people may also feel a sharp, stabbing pain, or dull ache in the rectum, just above the anus.

When should I see a doctor with bowel problems?

Most of us get an upset stomach every once in a while, which can go away on its own.

However, if your symptoms are persistent, and worsen over time, then it is important to visit your GP as soon as possible.

Your doctor will ask you questions about how your symptoms started and how severe they are. They will also ask you about your medical history, any medicines you are taking, and whether anything makes them better or worse.

Also, the GP may examine your back passage, to feel for any lumps or swelling.

From there, the GP may give you a diagnosis and recommend any treatment, or they may refer you for further testing. You may need to submit a stool sample, or take additional tests, such as a colonoscopy.

The earlier you visit a doctor, the quicker you can access advice, treatment and support.

How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels

How can I keep my digestive system healthy?

There are many things you can do to maintain good digestive health, such as:

How Do You Know if You Have Damaged Your Bowels

About Official Rapid Tests

At Official Rapid Tests, we are a UK Government listed testing provider. We are a team of medical industry experts, with a combined experience of 40 years in the testing, diagnostic and medical services sector.

With our services, it couldn’t be easier for you to test yourself (or your loved ones) for Covid-19. All you have to do is buy one of our Covid tests, which can be delivered the next day. Alternatively, book a Covid test at one of our test centres, as we have over 120 clinics all over the UK.

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We hope we have answered the question ‘how do you know if you have damaged your bowels?’

Read more articles on travelling, Covid tests and health tests on our blog here, such as Traveling With Incontinence 7 Tips and Randox V Official Rapid Tests.