White Mucus in Stool Causes – Parasites or IBS?
Seeing white mucus in stool remains can be rather startling. After all, feces do tend to come with some characteristic coloration, and white tinges simply aren’t often one of them. There are some common and uncommon causes of white mucus showing up on the commode contents left behind following a bowel movement. But, it’s important not to jump to conclusions.
Mayo Clinic explains that bowel mucus is actually quite common. In fact, it provides much needed moisture and lubrication to the intestines. If the digestive system is thought of an engine, then mucus can certainly be considered the bowel engine oil, that all essential lube that is pertinent to keeping the moving parts moving smoothly. Typically, bowel mucus is yellow to white or clear in color. It becomes a greater concern only when its incidence or amount increase or its accompanied by other symptoms because when present, white mucus in stool remains can be a symptom of underlying conditions.
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common causes of a whole host of digestive ails. Essentially, it’s a generalized condition of the large intestine that carries a wide range of symptoms such as constipation, abdominal cramping and a loss of appetite. There is no single identified cause to IBS; however both heredity and lifestyle are thought to play a role. Holistichelp.net explains that constipation, a very common symptom of IBS, can cause white mucus in stool. This is because just as the fecal matter has a difficult time passing, so does the beneficial and lubricating mucus. This can result in a buildup, which can make white mucus in stool even more apparent and noticeable. Since the symptoms of IBS can vary significantly from person to person, seeing unusually hued mucus in stool is often not enough to tell whether or not Irritable bowel syndrome is to blame. And, an investigation into other consistent symptoms is needed before a chronic case of IBS can be identified.
Colonspas.com discusses in vivid detail the relationship between parasites and mucus, where not uncommonly, parasites that are invading the digestive tract are expelled via fecal matter and are often found in remaining mucus, if not apparent on the stool itself. Fortunately (or, unfortunately depending on how you feel about the matter) there are often very telling symptoms of parasites that are far more noticeable than just white mucus in stool remnants. Aside from a less than normal mucus color, parasites like pinworms are often responsible for anal itching, restlessness and insomnia. Hookworms can create an itching sensation on the bottoms of the feet. And, threadworms can cause coughing and itchy, rash-like symptoms around the anal opening. It’s very likely that long before stool mucus color starts to instill worry, these unpleasant symptoms will pose a much larger problem first.
In most cases, white mucus in stool remains is little to worry about. It’s a natural byproduct of the body that is incredibly useful in helping keep the bowels functioning properly. Most often, its quantity is small enough that it’s barely even noticeable. However, seeing it doesn’t necessarily mean that there is anything to be concerned about. But, there are some cases of color such as black mucus in stool that is visible, where a consultation with a health care provider should be scheduled. This can be a sign of a serious underlying health condition. And, green mucus in stool that is apparent should also be considered a cause for consultation, particularly if symptoms persist. While white mucus in stool can be nothing more than a relatively normal component of healthy digestion, like other colored mucus, it can also be a sign of health conditions aside from parasites and IBS. Conditions like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis and even cancer can all have white mucus as a related symptom.
Watch this educational YouTube video provided by TheDoctors show to find out potential causes of mucus in stool:
It’s important that when stool mucus becomes apparent that all symptoms are evaluated to determine if it requires medical care or could be indicative of a health concern such as irritable bowel syndrome or a parasitic infection. The length of time that the white mucus in stool has been present, the quantity, the onset of symptoms, as well as other symptoms being experienced are all important to determining if there is a sinister cause behind the mucus. In most cases however, mucus is a friend to the digestive tract, whether considered another gross byproduct of bowel movements or not.