Kid’s Diarrhea in Summer
During summer in Shanghai, the weather is hot and humid. Many mothers are noticing changes in the color, shape, and frequency of their kids' stools. These stools are thin and watery, with an increased frequency. How does TCM understand this and what methods can help kids?
Why Are Kids More Prone to Diarrhea in Summer?
- Improper feeding: such as excessive consumption of raw, cold, sweet, and greasy foods, and excessive lactation.
- Exposure to external factors, such as summer heat, dampness, and cold.
- Inherent weakness in body constitution.
- Inadequate physical care following illness.
According to the theory of the Five Elements of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), summer, dampness, and the spleen and stomach belong to the Earth element. During Summer the spleen and stomach are in charge, with a humid climate and frequent rain. In some cases, such as during the Huang Mei Ji period, it could rain continuously. Children's organs and functions have not yet fully developed, and the above factors can lead to dysfunction of the spleen and stomach, resulting in symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and more.
According to TCM "without dampness, it will not cause diarrhea", therefore treatment focuses on strengthening the spleen and the stomach, resolving dampness, promoting digestion, and eliminating pathogenic factors. This approach aims to stop diarrhea and restore the body to a healthy state.
What TCM Therapies Can Treat Kids’ Diarrhea?
Chineses Herbal Medicine
This therapy uses specific formulation of herbs from plants, animals and minerals to balance the organs’ energies.
Moxibustion is a heat therapy using mugwort herb to improve blood circulation and dispel coldness.
Acupuncture involves using needles to stimulate specific points along the meridian（energy high way） in order to move the Qi（energy).
A method of using hand’s techniques to stimulate acupoints, to make the meridians unobstructed and circulation of Qi and blood, in order to adjust the function of the organs.
A method of utilizing the natures of food to regulate the body's functions in order to achieve health or prevent and treat diseases.
Based on comprehensive consultation, doctors choose single or multiple therapies to treat a child's diarrhea according to the condition's needs.
When choosing traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) therapies for children, doctors consider the physical characteristics and acceptance level of the kid. The chosen therapies should be gentle, non-irritating, flexible, safe, and effective in terms of drug selection, administration methods, and specific operations.
Regardless of whether the diarrhea is acute or chronic, it is important to seek medical attention from a Western medicine doctor immediately if dehydration symptoms such as extreme thirst, lack of urine, dry and inelastic skin, or restlessness occur.