Constipation normally means too hard, too small or too infrequent bowel movements. Infrequent bowel movements are common complaints although bowel activity is highly individual.
Constipation is caused mainly due to lack of good eating habits.
- Absence of green vegetables in adequate quantity and fruits in the regular meals. Their residue material is essential to form the ‘base’ of the stool.
- Drink sufficient quantity of water to keep the stool soft as the bulk of the stool is due to its water quantity.
- Reasonable time should be given for passing stool. Most people because of a fast schedule give very less time for proper defecation.
- Also if one makes a habit of holding on and not attending natures call in time, in due course, even a full rectum stops sending calls. This leads to development of chronic constipation.
- Gastro-colic reflux is the reflux phenomenon whereby, anything reaching the stomach stimulates the colon which results in calls to evacuate. Many people take a glass of water, a cup of tea or a cigarette to take advantage of reflux. Though this is not wrong but good eating and defecating habits are the one sure remedy.
- In women, the tone of the abdominal and pelvic muscles is lost due to repeated child bearing. Most of the women do not tone abdominal muscles through exercise.
- Other common causes for chronic constipation are drugs taken for hyper acidity, high blood pressure and commonly used pain killers and anti-inflammatory drugs. Strong purgatives also cause constipation after long use.
- Many people indulge in daily consumption of purgatives and by doing so, make the bowel completely empty and there is not enough residue for a stool to be formed the next day one gets dependent on the laxative/purgative for the next passage of stool, thereby setting off a vicious cycle.
- People with sedentary life style are bound to have constipation, as there is less amount of body activity.
- People who indulge in junk food, fried, oily and spicy food usually come across complaints of constipation.
- Anything in excess is harmful whether its tea, coffee, smoking or drinking. All can give rise to constipation.
Home Remedies To Relieve Constipation
- Dry ginger powder and senna leaves powder to be taken in equal quantity and mixed well. 5 grams of this powder should be taken along with a cup of lukewarm water before going to bed. This helps in easy passage of the stools.
- Cardamom is a highly useful home remedy; 5 grams of its powder can be taken with water.
- Take 5 grams of fried asafoetida, black salt, cardamom and dry ginger. Make fine powder, mix well and store. 1/2 teaspoon of this powder should be taken with lukewarm water 2 to 3 times a day which instantly gives relief.
- A single glycerin suppository may induce defecation within 30 minutes of use.
- Enema may also induce defecation within 30 minutes. Use a single pint of water or salt water. Avoid over the counter enemas.
- Above all eating healthy food with good amount of fibers will help to get rid of constipation.