Get help from a health care professional, or talk to your supervisor or care coordinator if:
Most people have their own regular pattern of bowel movements. A change in bowel habits means that there has been a change in someone's normal pattern. Bowel habits can change because of a short-term problem, e.g. an infection like gastroenteritis (gastro), or because of a major health problem, e.g cancer. The reason for a change in bowel habits needs to be worked out quickly.
The person you support should go to their general practitioner (GP) or other health care professional as soon as possible if they:
It's important to collect information about the change in bowel habits, so that you can tell the person's GP or other health care professional when you see them. Take note of:
Need more help? Call the National Continence Helpline on 18OO 33 OO 66 and talk to a continence nurse advisor.
This information is not a substitute for independent professional advice.