We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

How Can I Treat Loss of Bowel Control?

By Nicole Long
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Several treatment options exist for the loss of bowel control, often referred to as bowel incontinence. Treatment will depend largely on the cause of the loss of bowel control. This can include medication, dietary modification, therapy, and sometimes surgery.

Not to be confused with urinary incontinence, the loss of bowel control involves the passage of stool on an involuntary basis. The severity of the condition can range from occasional difficulties to a complete loss of function. The amount of stool leaked can also vary depending on the circumstances. Bowel incontinence is more prevalent in women over the age of 65 than men in the same age range.

Common causes of bowel incontinence have been identified, including chronic constipation, severe diarrhea, and stress. Some people suffering from the condition may have the inability to recognize the need to have a bowel movement. Other causes can include those related to surgery of the rectum, prostate, or bowel.

Medication can often help treat the loss of bowel control. In those that suffer from a loss of bowel control related to severe diarrhea, medication containing loperamide may be recommended to help reduce the frequency of bowel movements. Other medications and supplements that can be helpful include those containing activated charcoal or fiber.

Several dietary modifications may be helpful for those experiencing a loss of bowel control. This includes increasing fiber and reducing the amount of caffeine or alcohol in a person’s diet. Identifying foods that may trigger episodes of bowel incontinence is also an important part of dietary modification. This can include eliminating dairy products for those with lactose intolerance. Other dietary modifications include drinking plenty of fluids and getting regular exercise to help promote normal stool consistency and reduce the possibility of bowel incontinence.

Various therapies also exist as possible treatment measures for bowel incontinence. Those with difficulty controlling sphincter muscles may benefit from exercise programs specifically designed to increase muscle control. For some, especially the elderly, the process of getting to a bathroom may be preventing them from properly acting on the need to have a bowel movement. In this instance, assisting them to the bathroom after meals and on a regular basis can help reduce the possibility of a loss of bowel control.

Most cases of bowel incontinence are treatable with medication, dietary modification, and therapy, but surgery is an option for those who don’t respond to these treatments. Surgery options include repair of the muscles surrounding the anus and artificial bowel sphincter surgery. In severe cases, a colostomy may be performed.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

Discussion Comments

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.