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Self Care

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Constipation

 

Constipation is the passage of hard, dry, or infrequent stools and is usually easy to cure naturally. The fairly easy thing to do is emptying one’s bowel as the bowel sends a signal when they are ready to pass a stool.Most frequently, the cause of constipation is ignoring this signal.

The large intestine draws water from stools, so the longer stools remain there, the more water the large intestine will absorb, making the stools harder and more difficult to pass.

Each person has his or her own natural schedule. Some people may move their bowels two or three times a day, while other may have a bowel movement once every three to five days. How often doesn’t matter (unless the frequency has changed a lot); it is the consistency of the stool or the discomfort that tells you if you are constipated.

Stress triggered by toilet training can lead to constipation. Seniors, who may become less active as they age, sometimes complain of constipation. With both age groups, a change in diet can get the bowels back on course. Fresh fruits and vegetables have a natural laxative action and also provide fiber. Foods such as bran, celery, and whole-wheat breads also add fiber, which draws water to the stool. Extra fluids also are a good idea, particularly plain water and fruit juices.

Sometimes constipation signals an underlying, more serious problem. One common health problem is an irritable colon, causing alternating bouts of diarrhea and constipation.

Mild laxatives, such as milk of magnesia, or enemas, can relieve temporary symptoms of constipation but should not be used often as an aid to regular bowel movements. Diet, particularly adding natural fiber, will work as well. Fiber supplements can also be used.

Signs and Symptoms :

  • Constipation and abdominal pain, vomiting , fever, or loss of appetite .
  • Persistent pencil-thin stools .
  • Suspicion that a drug is causing the constipation.
  • Only mucus and fluids will pass .
  • Self-care steps do not help after a week, or discomfort increases .


  • Self care steps :

    If you have no other symptoms, relax .

    Your body will signal you when it is ready for a bowel movement. When you discover the natural time during the day for you to have one, try to set aside that time each day. Try to heed this call. Relax while sitting on the toilet.

    Change your diet. Increase your liquid intake. Plain water and fruit juices are best. Add fresh fruits and vegetables and whole-grain breads to your diet.

    Reduce the amount of taking milk and dairy products.

    Exercise more. Because exercise not only helps your bowels move more frequently, it helps reduce the stress that may make you temporarily constipated.

    Use a stool softener, mild laxative, or nondietary fiber product to relieve temporary symptoms. Once your bowel movements have returned to normal, use diet modification, exercise, and stress reduction techniques to stay regular.

    Take 2—3 teaspoons of mineral oil at bedtime for up to 3 days to help ease constipation.

     


     
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