Dr.. Osama Abu al-Rub – Al-Jazeera Net 8/29/2020
What is constipation? What are its symptoms? Two questions may seem simple, but it is not so simple. In this comprehensive report, we learn about the definition of constipation, its signs, causes and treatments, so let’s go.
Definition of constipation
Constipation is defined as a person going to defecate three times a week or less, and the stool can be hard and dry, and sometimes the process of defecation is painful, according to the US National Library of Medicine.
Signs of constipation
1- Defecation at a rate of 3 or fewer times per week.
2- Hard stools.
3- Dry stools.
4- Difficulty defecating.
5- Pain during bowel movements.
6- The person feels after a bowel movement that his intestine has not completely emptied.Advertising
However, people can have different patterns of bowel movement, and only you know what’s normal for you, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases in the United States.
Is constipation a disease?
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases in the United States, constipation is not a disease, but it may be a symptom of another medical problem. Constipation may last for a short time or for a long time.
How does constipation happen?
Constipation occurs when waste products (faeces) that form after food are digested move very slowly as they pass through the digestive system, and when stools move slowly, a lot of water from the stool is absorbed into the gut, and the stools become hard and dry, according to the American College of Gastroenterology. College of Gastroenterology).
The progressive expansion of the rectum and poor coordination between the pelvic muscles and the anus sometimes lead to or cause constipation, and sometimes a combination of these causes occurs.
Another cause of constipation is bowel obstruction, which is a serious condition.
Who are the people most likely to suffer from constipation?
1- Women, especially during pregnancy or after childbirth.
2- The elderly.
3- People who eat little fiber.
4- People taking certain medications or nutritional supplements, such as antacids containing aluminum and calcium, anticholinergics, antispasmodics, anticonvulsants, calcium channel blockers, and diuretics. Iron supplements, medicines used to treat Parkinson’s disease, narcotic pain medicines, and some medicines used to treat depression.
5- People who suffer from certain health problems, such as functional gastrointestinal disorders.
When should I see a doctor immediately?
You should see a doctor immediately if you experience constipation and any of the following symptoms:
1- Bleeding from the rectum.
2- Blood in the stool.
3- Constant pain in the abdomen.
4- Inability to have a bowel movement, which may indicate a bowel obstruction.
7- Low back pain.
8- Unexplained weight loss.
It must be emphasized here that if you suffer from symptoms such as fever, bleeding, or the inability to defecate, you should see a doctor immediately or in an emergency room. The inability to defecate may indicate a bowel obstruction.
A person’s sudden constipation accompanied by severe pain or nausea is an indication of intestinal obstruction, which is a medical emergency that requires urgent intervention.
Intestinal obstruction is a dangerous condition that may lead to interruption of blood supply to parts of the intestine, “gangrene”, infection, and a perforation of the intestine, which may also lead to death.
Treatments for constipation
For treating constipation, the following is generally recommended:
1- Drink enough fluids, 8-12 cups of water or fluids daily.
2- Eat more fiber-rich foods. Depending on your age and gender, adults should get 25 to 31 grams of fiber per day.
3- Go to defecation as soon as you feel the need to go, do not sheathe faeces.
4- If you think that some medications or dietary supplements are causing you constipation talk to your doctor, who may change the dose or suggest a different medicine that does not cause constipation. Do not change or stop any medication or supplement without first talking to a healthcare professional.
5- Your health care professional may recommend a laxative for a short time, and he will tell you which type of laxative is best for you, such as fiber supplements and osmotic agents – which are laxatives that keep large amounts of water in the large intestine and make stool Stool softeners and others.
If you’ve been taking laxatives for a long time and can’t have a bowel movement without taking a laxative, talk to your doctor about how to slowly stop using them.
Prevention of constipation
1- Drink enough fluids, one and a half liters to 3 liters a day.
3- Follow a diet rich in fiber.
Useful magic foods to prevent constipation
3- Pulses, such as beans, lentils, chickpeas, peas and beans.
4- Light soups, not prepared with cream.
5- Olive oil.
6- Wheat bran.
Source: Al Jazeera + websites + agencies