Constipation is one of the most common stomach upsets experienced by many. It is a condition in which there is difficulty in emptying the bowels, usually associated with hardened faeces. Normally, when a person has less than one stool per week ie, less than one bowel movement per week. the person is bound to be constipated.
Certain things ranging from food substances such as low fiber diets, medications, and lifestyle, might just be the culprits behind that constipation. Constipation can be caused by the slow passage of digesting food through any part of the digestive system. Constipation can also be caused by the slow movement of material through the colon (large bowel). The two disorders limited to the colon that cause constipation are colonic inertia and pelvic floor dysfunction.
In a situation where the symptoms include loss of weight, or is not responding to simple, safe and effective treatments, it is very essential to see a doctor for further investigations.
There’re indications to show that a person is constipated, they can include the following symptoms:
- Lower abdominal discomfort
- A sense of incomplete evacuation (the feeling that you still have to “go”) after a bowel movement
- Straining to have a bowel movement
- Hard or small stools
- Rectal bleeding and/or anal fissures caused by hard stools
Constipation does not show any form of threat to life; but if the symptoms is asssociated with loss of weight, vomitting, some medications can be recommended to ease the bowel
Usually, some natural ways can be very effective in relieving constipation. The treatment may include foods high in fiber, non-stimulant laxatives, stimulant laxatives.
In some cases, hot drinks work well. Herbal tea or a cup of hot water with a little lemon juice (a natural laxative) or honey may stimulate the colon as well. Coffee is also a diuretic.
Generally, staying hydrated is the surest way of avoiding constipation, however, drinking adequate water at least, 8 glasses can help lighten the stool.
Contipation in children can be improved also by feeding children foods high in fibre, and water must be included in their daily diets.
Please take note: Hot water must not be poured in the anus of babies to help the baby pass out feases, this may cause more damage.