Constipation or diarrhea are signs of abnormality in bowel movements; blood in the stool can also signify a problem, according to WebMD. The color of bowel movements can also be indicative of a digestive issue or other problems.
Constipation can result when there is not enough fiber in the diet or when someone doesn't drink enough water. It can also be caused by lack of physical activity, certain medicines and a slowing of the body's metabolic system. Inversely, diarrhea is a type of abnormal bowel movement that can be caused by viruses, bacteria or gastrointestinal problems. Constipation or diarrhea that occurs over an extended period of time should be evaluated by a doctor.
Blood in the stool is a cause for alarm, although it can be caused by tears in the anal tissue from straining during constipation periods, or it can result fromhemorrhoids. However, it can also be an indicator of colorectal cancer, so it should be evaluated.
The color of stool can indicate an individual'shealth. For instance, black stools can be a sign of internal bleeding as a result of cancer or a bleeding ulcer. Still, black stool can be caused by the use of bismuth or iron medications. Stool that is black and tarry requires consultation with a doctor.
Abnormal bowel movements that areaccompanied by symptoms such as dehydration, abdominal pain and fever should not be ignored, as it can be an indicator of gastrointestinal trouble, such as viruses, food poisoning or appendicitis.