Constipation

Difficulty in passing stool or passes once in 2 / 3 days, stools can be hard or soft is termed as constipation. Even ineffectual urge or a sensation of incomplete stools can be termed as constipation.

CAUSES:

  • Modern life style – not eating enough and drinking little water, lack of exercise.
  • Emotional or psychological problems.
  • Sedentary life.
  • Eating too much of meat and dairy products.
  • Chronic abuse of laxatives.
  • Bottle fed babies.
  • Pregnancy.
  • Certain drugs like antacids, iron, calcium, blood pressure medications.
  • Certain digestive tract diseases.
  • School going children are shy to tell teacher, and later develops a habit to ignore the urge.
  • Cooking in aluminum, iron vessels.

SIGN AND SYMPTOMS:

  • Stools every 2nd or 3rd day.
  • Difficulty in expelling feces from rectum.
  • Painful evacuation of feces.
  • Pain sometimes remains for hours after passing stool.
  • Hard stools.
  • Occasional blood in stool due to fissure, fistula or piles.

DIETARY MANAGEMENT:

  • Do not suppress the urge to pass stools.
  • Get a regular time fixed to the toilet.
  • Drink at least 2-3 liters of water a day.
  • Eat high fiber diet – whole grains, bran, oat, green leafy vegetables, peas, beans, potatoes, raw vegetables, salads, dried fruits and fresh fruits.
  • Eat fruits and vegetables with the skin.
  • Avoid food that can cause constipation like pomegranate etc.
  • You can take one spoon isubgul (fiber, Psyllium) in water before retiring to bed.
  • Walk after every meals.
  • Drink 2- 4 glasses of warm water every morning.
  • Limit intake of laxatives.