Change in bowel habit

When you have a usual bowel habit and it changes, it is worth seeing a doctor. Most short term changes are nothing to worry about but if it lasts for more than a week or so or you are worried, seek help. One of the biggest concerns is making sure you do not have bowel cancer. A changed bowel habit is different for everyone and it may be more or less frequent or a changed consistency of the bowel motion.

Associated symptoms may include blood or mucus in the bowel motions, general discomfort in the abdomen (feelings of bloating, fullness, pain or cramps), constant tiredness, being weak and pale and marked weight loss.

Having these symptoms does not mean that you definitely have bowel cancer but is important to be assessed and in most cases, have an examination of the bowel called a colonoscopy.