Constipation is a common digestive problem. If a person does not pass stool at least once in 24 hours, he is considered to be constipated It may be difficult for you to have a bowel movement, or your bowel movements may be infrequent. One should be constipated if have fewer than three bowel movements a week. Normal bowel movement pattern is one bowel movement per day. Your stools may be very hard, making them so difficult to pass that you have to strain. Or you may feel like you still need to have a bowel movement even after you've had one. Constipation also differs in degree of severity- a person may suffer from occasional mild, severe, acute or chronic constipation. Causes of all these types of constipation differ from each other.


Symptoms of Constipation


Following are the major constipation symptoms:

  • Straining or difficulty in passing stools.
  • Sense of incomplete evacuation after a bowel movement.
  • Cramping in a lower abdomen.
  • Infrequent stools.
  • Hard stools
  • Acute constipation might show such symptoms as rectal bleeding, abdominal pain and cramps, nausea and vomiting.

Causes of Constipation


Following are the major constipation causes;

  • Irregular and improper diet.
  • Low fibre diet.
  • Lack of exercise.
  • Travel affects regular habits of eating, sleeping, and normal bowel routines. However, this type of constipation might get over as soon as normal routine is resumed.
  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy slow down the intestinal activities which might lead to constipation.
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) that is the functional bowel disorder characterized by chronic abdominal pain, discomfort, bloating, and diarrhea often alternating with periods of constipation.
  • Certain medications like narcotic pain medications, antidepressants, anticonvulsants, iron supplements, antacids containing calcium or aluminium etc.
  • Mental factors like, insomnia, nervousness, stress also cause constipation as do medical causes like, fever, infections and being bedridden for long.

 Home Remedies for Constipation


There are many simple home remedies for constipation treatment. 

  • Drink a glass of warm milk before going to bed for an easy evacuation in the morning. In case of severe constipation, add two teaspoons of Castor oil in the milk.
  • Drink lemon juice mixed with warm water two to three times a day to ease constipation problem.
  • Mix Plum (allu bukhara) with honey and take it regularly for constipation relief.
  • Mix 2 tsp husk seed (Isabgol) in 1/2 a cup of hot milk. Drink it every night.
  • Take a glass of warm water with 1/2 a lime juice and 1 tsp honey. Drink it daily in the morning for relief.
  • Take one or two teaspoons of aloe gel twice a day.
  • Take a teaspoon of Triphala Churna with warm water or milk before going to bed.
  • Ginger tea is also an effective home remedy.
  • Eat papaya before breakfast everyday.         

 Constipation Treatment and Advice

  • Eat oatmeal, rice, wheat germ, corn bran, prunes, raisins, apricots, figs and apple.
  • During constipation, take such diet that is easily digestible.
  • Have plenty of fruits, vegetables and salads.
  • Do not take too much of fried foods, beans, gas forming vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli. Do not mix too many kinds of foods in one meal.
  • Do aerobic exercise such as walking, running and swimming.
    Take high fibre diet.
  • Drink eight to ten glasses of water daily.

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