What is exactly constipation?
Most people have a bowel movement ( in common language- motions/ stools/ potty ) daily, more or less on a specific time.
Having motions daily, but with difficulty, straining , pain or bleeding is a sign of constipation.
Having dry & hard stools .
For some its not regular, it may be 5 times a week or on different times.
If this causes any discomfort in anus, feeling to bloating / fullness in the abdomen, it need to be addressed.
KIDS often suffer from constipation because of various reasons-
1. Toddlers and younger kids tend to hold potty for various reasons like while playing or at school.
2. Pain may cause holding it further.
3. Diet poor in fibre ( vegetables, fruits) if one major cause.
4. Too much intake of processed food like pasta, cheese, noodles , biscuits .
5. During a phase of sickness, kids tend to eat and drink less , so this leads to constipation.
6. Poor water intake.
7. Iron supplements
8. Excess intake of meat, eggs, milk , in absence of fibre to balance diet.
ADULTS may have constipation due to above mentioned reasons and the following-
1. Thyroid disease
2. OC pills or hormone pills
3. IBS or Irritable bowel disease , where there are phases of loose stools followed by phases of constipation .
4. Working in shifts and irregular sleep timings.
6. High protein diet
What happens if I have constipation for long time?
Straining may cause a tear at anus, commonly known as ANAL FISSURE.
This causes further pain, bleeding and itching .
Prolonged constipation may cause a vein to become swollen and pop out of anus in the form of PILES or HEMORRHOIDS.
Piles can be internal ( not seen , but bleed) , or external ( come out of anus , felt as small bumps , which may bleed at times.
Infection may occur in addition to this forming a FISTULA , in some patients .
Besides this, there are things like bloating, feeling gassy, irritability and dullness of mood , poor appetite which is experienced if one is constipated.
HOW TO GET RID OF CONSTIPATION AND RELATED ISSUES?
Changes in diet and lifestyle is the foremost thing, besides taking medication .
Alternative therapy provides safe and non- habit forming medicines for constipation. Also non-surgical treatment for piles, fissure and other symptoms.
DIET FOR CONSTIPATION:
1. Increased intake of water, it should be enough to have light colored urine and soft and easy stools.
2. Vegetables smoothies – made from commonly available vegetables like cucumber, carrots, tomato, ginger, lemon , spinach etc. Increased intake of vegetables in general and LEAFY ones in particular.
3. Dried fruits like apricots, dates, raisins on a daily basis.
4. Sweet fruits like mango, chiku, papaya, figs
5. Curd & yoghurt , I recommend use of home made one.
6. Increasing intake of fibre in form of whole grain ( dalia, hand pounded rice) ,whole dal , roasted channa is one big sources of fibre.
7. Switching to healthy snacks like makahna, fruits, whole wheat biscuits, nuts, pop corn, channa , rather then having maida bisutis, vada pav, Maggie.
8. While fasting- instead of having SABUDANA , instead having raita, fruits, salads.
9. Intake of GHEE or clarified butter improves bowel movments.
1. Avoid sitting for long hours.
2. Applying ghee/ Vaseline/ coconut oil around anus, keeps skin moist and soft.
3. Exercise daily
4. Avoid sleeping immediately after meals.
5. Learn to cook , order less food from outside, uninstall apps to order food, as they send discount offer to lure customers.
6. Sleeping & eating on regular time.
7. Mindful eating.
Seeking medical help timely is important as many times the illness gets worse and turns into a painful , emergency.
Thanks for reading!