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Apr 2024

Everything you need to know about constipation

Posted By Suborna Fermi Posted on Apr 12, 2024

Constipation is one of the most common digestive complications. This occurs when you have dry bowel movements or have difficulty passing down stools. This can cause various uncomfortable symptoms, including pain, nausea, and bloating. Changes in diet, side effects of medications, and other factors may cause constipation. According to the cause, home remedies or medication may help.

What is constipation?

Generally, constipation is defined as having less than three bowel movements in a week. However, how often one poops varies from person to person. Everyone has a unique pattern of bowel movement, as long as it is normal. Factors that generally define constipation:

  • Having bowel movements that are painful or stools that are hard to pass.
  • Stools that are hard and dry
  • Having a feeling that your bowel have not fully emptied

How does constipation happen?

Constipation occurs when your large inytestine or colon absorbs excessive water from your poop. This dries out the poop and makes it hard in consistency, which leads to difficulties pushing it out of the body.

Partially digested foods that pass from the small intestine to the large intestine and become stools. Your colon absorbs water from the stool, which makes it hard. For people who have constipation, food moves too slowly through their digestive system. This gives the colon more time to absorb water from waste, leading to constipation.

What causes constipation?

Various factors may contribute to constipation; the most common causes include:

  • Diet that is low in fiber and high in meat, milk and cheese
  • Older age
  • Dehydration
  • Lack of exercise
  • Pregnancy
  • Changes in daily routine
  • Certain conditions, including underactive thyroid gland, diabetes, stroke, and Parkinson’s disease
  • Complications in colon, such as IBS, intestinal obstruction, or diverticulosis
  • Side effects of certain medication, including antacids, diuretics, pain medications, or others

How is constipation treated?

Generally, constipation resolves on its own without the help of any medical treatment. If you seek medical help, then doctors may prescribe you laxatives. However, if the condition does not improve, then your doctor may suggest an abdominal imaging test or a colonoscopy to identify the underlying cause.

Two of the most common causes of constipation are a diet low in fiber and dehydration. That is why, if you experience fewer bowel movements, then consider adding more fiber to your diet and drinking more water. Also, make sure to consult a doctor if the symptoms get worse.