Also known as constipation, constipation is when a person feels the need to have a bowel movement, but simply cannot. This is because the stool is hard or dry, resulting in a lot of abdominal pain, pain in the rectum and other consequences. Constipation can affect anyone, including babies and children in general. It is also common during pregnancy. When you are constipated, bowel movements occur with many days of separation between each of them. There are people who usually go to the bathroom just once a week; this is a serious problem of constipation.
Constipation in babies is easy to notice, since normally breastfeeding children defecate at least twice a day. When a change is made in their diet, at least for a few days they present constipation.
Types of Constipation:
There are mainly two types of constipation:
- Passive constipation:occurs from time to time and for a defined time due to an unusual event in people’s lives, such as pregnancy, diet change, momentary sedentary lifestyle, an unusual intake of “heavy” foods, usually on weekends or on vacation, stress or for a treatment of a disease.
- Chronic or habitual constipation:occurs several times for many months and for an indefinite period.
What are the Main Symptoms?
It is difficult for some people to know if they are constipated or not, especially since they do not take note of the average number of times they go to the bathroom during the week. Maybe he doesn’t talk about it with other people to compare symptoms. On the other hand, if you have always suffered from constipation, you may feel that this is normal. These are the symptoms of constipation in most people:
- Stool accumulation, which becomes large and difficult to expel.
- Some blood or white mucus in the stool.
- Swelling in the belly
- Go to the bathroom to evacuate, do it in small quantitiesand feel that you should evacuate again
- Feeling of needing a great effort to expel stool.
- Feel strong pains, but evacuate very little.
- Feel intestinal or rectum obstruction.
- Key symptom:defecate less than three times a week.
What are the Causes of Constipation?
Bad nutrition: like everything in our body, what we eat is a fundamental part of our integral health. If your foods are very processed products, with little (or no) amount of fiber, for example, you may experience constipation on occasion.
“Medications can also cause constipation, such as analgesic or flu”.
Dehydration plays a very important role in each bowel movement, especially when it is not possible to expel stool. If you drink too little water during the day, you may have problems in your intestines that cause constipation. Other common causes are pregnancy, sedentary lifestyle and old age. So are diseases such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, strokes, diabetes and hypothyroidism. Constipation in babies is caused when the infant begins to be fed whole milk or solid foods for the first time. They usually have a hard time starting to digest them.
Consequences of Constipation:
The consequences of constipation vary between simple and complex. Some people constantly suffer the ravages of this condition, while others tend to live with it without having major concerns.
- Faecal accumulation (they get bigger).
- Tearing of the skin surrounding the anus.
- Hemorrhoid problems
- Rectal prolapse (when a small part of the intestine leaves the anus).
What Medications can Cause Constipation?
Medications can also cause constipation. Special care should be taken with the following:
- Medicines for hypertensive.
- Cold medicines.
- Calcium and iron supplements.
How to Avoid Constipation?
Some people live with constipation and take it as a normal routine, not knowing that they could improve their lives if they modified their eating habits, which is a direct solution to constipation.
- Drinking water. If every time you go to the bathroom you suffer from skin tearing it may be because the stool is dry. This avoids drinking water constantly.
- Eat foods with fiber. This regulates bowel movement. To do this you must eat between 20 and 35 grams of fiber daily. Beans contain fiber, cereals such as rice, wheat and others, fruits and vegetables.
- Physical exercises help improve activities in the intestinal tract so that regular bowel movements occur.
- Do not wait to go to the bathroom. There is no reason not to try to evacuate if there is no physical or other impediment. Do not leave it for later.
- Do not self-medicate. Some painkillers can slow the digestive system. Although they are prescribed, you should be very careful with the intake of this type of medicine. Check with your doctor if you have constant constipation.
Treatments for constipation:
- An enema is a type of wash that occurs when a liquid that helps to defecate is introduced directly into the anus. When the situation becomes alarming, some people go to the doctor to perform this procedure.
- Prescription drug. There are several drugs that serve to combat the causes of constipation. Depending on why we maintain that condition, the medication prescribed by the doctor will depend.
- If the problem results in damage to the intestine, it is likely to require an operation. This of course will end with constipation, at least for a good time.
What Foods are Good?
It is necessary to make changes in our diet to combat constipation. Although there are multiple home remedies, nothing more effective than maintaining a diet high in vegetable fiber and with few servings of fat and protein. Some of the foods you can add to your diet to cure this problem:
- Wholemeal bread.
- Grains such as beans, peas, beans and chickpeas.
- Nuts in general.
- Integral rice.
- Wheat bran
- Wholegrain Pasta
- Sunflower, flax and other seeds.
- Potatoes and sweet potatoes.
- Lettuce, chard and spinach
Likewise, we must accompany the diet with regular exercises, with good hydration and, if necessary, the help of laxatives. If you think it is necessary to test laxatives, you must first take into account that it should not be a continuous practice, as this could bring more dehydration and other problems.