Constipation: Sign, symptoms and treatment for this common, yet complicated problem

With lifestyle and diet changes and self-healing techniques like Sujok, the problem can he managed

Rajshree VoraUpdated: Sunday, May 29, 2022, 12:14 PM IST
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Constipation has become a common health problem these days. From children to elders, many are experiencing it. Constipation does not cause pain and, hence, often goes unnoticed in children. Parents need to observe the bowel movements of children to identify if they are suffering from constipation.

Constipation is a condition when there is difficulty in emptying bowels and is usually associated with hardened stools. It occurs when the colon absorbs more water from the waste. That makes the stool dry and it becomes difficult to pass it. A person, at times, has less than three bowel movements a week. Even after passing a stool, the person feels unsatisfied. In severe constipation, bleeding occurs with the passing of stool. Many individuals need a doctor's help to seek relief from constipation.

Causes

  • Eating food that is low on fibre

  • Certain medications

  • Stress

  • Pregnancy

  • Drinking less water

  • Genetic

  • Advancing age

  • Some neurological problems

  • Spine-related problems

  • Lifestyle

  • Routine change

  • Travelling

  • Frequently controlling the urge to have a bowel movement

Damage caused by constipation

  • It damages muscles of the pelvis due to overstraining while passing stools

  • Muscles damage can lead to urine leakage with coughing, sneezing or laughing

  • Causes haemorrhoids

  • Can cause anal fissures by tearing the lining of the anus

  • Toxins can get accumulated in the body that can make a person sick

  • It causes diverticulitis in extreme cases

  • Sometimes stool piles up in the colon, causing trouble

When to consult a doctor?

  • If constipation is severe, even after taking proper care

  • If you see blood in the stool

  • In case of haemorrhoids or fissures

  • Sudden weight loss

  • Severe cramps while passing stool

Self-care in constipation

  • Drink more water

  • Do yoga or floor exercise

  • Eat food rich in fibre

  • Eat whole fruits, with the skin

  • Consume leafy vegetables, chawli and amaranth bhaji

  • Avoid caffeinated drinks and alcohol

  • Avoid non-vegetarian food, mainly eggs, meat

  • Avoid food which causes constipation

  • Avoid reading or using while sitting on the toilet

  • Some Ayurvedic remedies like Triphala, isabgol (psyllium husk), harde, fresh amla etc. can help manage constipation

Sujok Therapy: Massage on the line (see the palm photo) or apply seeds.

(The author is an obesity consultant, dietitian and nutritionist, Sujok therapist, counsellor, and a yoga therapist)

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