What Are the Most Common Causes of Morning Diarrhea?

Bananas can help bulk up stool in those with diarrhea.
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  • Written By: C. Daw
  • Edited By: O. Wallace
  • Last Modified Date: 17 April 2014
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There are many various reasons that can cause morning diarrhea, but the most common factor that attributes to it is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Other simple problems such as stress can also soften the stools in this manner, as can more serious medical problems such as Crohn’s disease and colon cancer. The most accurate, and safe, way to find the cause of morning diarrhea is to schedule a visit with a licensed medical provider and have some tests completed, which will usually consist of lab work and various other tests, including a colonoscopy if needed. Some basic tests will be done first to rule out some of the most common factors, and then more involved ones will be done until the cause of the diarrhea is found.


Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is the most common cause of morning diarrhea and is usually the first medical condition that will be checked for when these types of symptoms surface. Of course, a gastrointestinal infection will be ruled out first, meaning that the colon will be checked along with tests for Crohn’s disease. IBS is caused when the intestines and colon do not contract as smoothly as they are supposed to, and can usually be contributed to the diet. Changes in basic eating patterns will usually effectively solve this problem, whether it is simply eating earlier in the evening or eating healthier. Allergic reactions to specific foods can also cause IBS, so these daily patterns will have to be analyzed until the problem is found, and then changes to remove those problems will have to be implemented.

Some medications can also affect the stools. Antibiotics have been shown, in numerous studies, to cause morning diarrhea. This problem can actually occur at any time of the day, but early morning diarrhea is extremely common because as the body and mind wakes up, so does the internal organs of the body. Various other medications can cause loose stools, so the medical provider that evaluates the patient will need to know about every medication that is being taken.

Various diseases can also cause problems with the stools in the morning. Morning diarrhea can be caused by Crohn’s disease, colon cancer, and colitis, as well as some more milder problems such as food poisoning and E. coli. If IBS is ruled out, and the analysis of the diet and lifestyle does not find a cause for the problem, then specific tests will be completed in order to rule all of these afflictions out. Morning diarrhea symptoms can be attributed to a number of factors, so various tests need to be done by a professional medical provider in order to isolate the problem, which is the first step in solving it.


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Post 1

I am an 83 year old female and for the last two or three years get morning diarrhea. I have about four or five liquid movements, and then the whole day I am fine. What could be the cause? Please help.

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