Constipation is a term that almost everyone would be aware of. It is important to note that constipation can occur to anyone and its causes are many. In this article we are going to discuss the causes and then highlight the ways through which constipation can be relieved.
For most people constipation is a highly irritating condition and many people would want to know the ways by which it can be relieved.
Let us start off with a basic idea of what constipation is. Constipation can refer to infrequent stools, hard stools, difficulty in passing stools, or a sense of incomplete emptying after a bowel movement. So there are different types of constipations and each individual may face one of these types. The causes of each type may be different. Talking about it in medicinal terms, constipation refers to a situation where a person has less than 3 bowel movements in a week.
The following could be the possible causes of constipation:
- Intake of certain medicines like narcotic pain relievers including Tylenol #3 and Dilaudid.
- Intake of antidepressants such as Elavil and Tofranil
- Intake of iron supplements
- The habits of people. For example if one changes their habits of bowl movement too frequently or tries to control the bowl movement (suppress it in some cases)
- The diet of a person matters a lot in constipation. Fiber is extremely important in maintaining a soft and a bulky stool. One should eat lots of vegetables and fruits and avoid too much intake of low fiber foods.
- Another reason could be the over use of laxatives
- Hormonal disorders can also cause constipation
- There are also numerous diseases of the colon that can give rise to constipation
If a person feels too uncomfortable trying to relieve constipation, there are certain measures they can take. There are natural measures and other measures available too. Of course it is recommended that a person first tries the natural measures and if they don’t work only then go for medicines.
Steps to control constipation
There are certain natural steps that a person can take to relieve constipation. It may be noticed that these steps might actually require a person to change their lifestyle or habits for some time. But once they get used to it, they will notice that their life is easier and more comfortable.
The steps are as follows:
- Those people who have had these problems since a long time can try drinking more and more water. In this case, fluids other than water might not help. Pure water is the best remedy. An individual must intake about eight to nine glasses of water. But again make sure that you opt for pure water rather than juices or milk which can actually worsen the condition of constipation. Keep the consumption of alcohol to a low level and make sure you drink lots of water early morning and the rest of the day as well.
- Moreover a person should realize the importance of high fiber diets and how they can help relieve constipation. High fiber foods are extremely important for the health of an individual. Remember to always add new fiber foods to give your body time to settle down. Do not change your diet too fast! Some high fiber foods include apples, apricot, bananas, blueberries, figs, grapefruit, oranges, peach, pears, plums, raisins, raspberries and strawberries. Some high fiber grain foods contain almonds, black beans, bran cereal, bread, brown rice, cashews, flax seeds, kidney beans, lentils, lima beans, oats, quinoa, pasta, peanuts, pistachio nuts, pumpkin seeds, soybeans and walnuts etc. some high fiber vegetables include avocado, beets, broccoli, brussels, cabbage, carrots, coleslaw, collard greens, corn, celery, green beans and tomatoes etc.
- One of the important relieving mechanisms for constipation is good exercise. Studies prove that those people who exercise regularly and have a regular activity in their daily routines do not face the problems of constipation as much as those people do who like sitting idle and do not spend time in exercises. Even doing it for about 30 minutes a day would help! Go out for a walk in the park, or grab a basketball and try putting it in the hoop or do anything that you feel you are good at but the point is make sure you do some exercise regularly as this is going to solve your problem of constipation.
- Most importantly, try to avoid constipating foods such as pastries, cheese, ice cream, whole milk, processed foods, fatty meats and other foods with hard animal fats. Do not make it a routine to eat such foods almost daily. Some foods that may cause constipation include deep fried foods such as chips, dairy products such as cheese, fatty meats, refined grains, highly starchy foods, fast foods including pizzas and burgers and refined foods such as cakes and pastries.
- To have a healthy bowel movement it is also important to sit in a position where you can easily squeeze out the fetus. Sit in a naturally squatting position for a healthy bowel movement. You can also try putting up your feet on a stool and raising your knees when you sit on the toilet.
- It is important for those people who face the problems of constipation regularly to focus on remaining healthy and fit and to concentrate on those diet plans which help relieve constipation. For example, yogurt would be a good idea to have when a person faces this problem.
So our discussion above clearly proves that although constipation is a very common problem amongst people especially in the modern world, there are still so many ways through which you can treat this problem. So whoever faces such problems need not worry about this problem and before taking any medicines must realize that there are other natural remedies too which might actually be more helpful. But of course if you have already tried these remedies and feel that they don’t work then you need to contact your doctor immediately.